By Carl Stagner
Louise Deines is ninety-eight years old. That hasn’t stopped her from continuing to love the Lord and the Lakota people. Her ministry through the Church of God in Scottsbluff, Nebraska, has stretched fifty years across both seasons of challenge and blessing. Though she was never ordained as a minister, her ministry of presence, teaching, and encouragement has proved vital to home missions in the region. While her qualifications could have taken her anywhere, her heart is with Native American ministry in Scottsbluff. Accolades aren’t what matter to Louise, though she was recently honored for fifty years of home missionary service. What really matters to Louise is love. Continue reading
Posted in All Church of God, Central, Home Missions
Tagged Award, ceremony, faces of the movement, Handel Smith, home missionary, home missions, honor, Kay Critser, Lakota, Louise Deines, Louise Patterson Deines, Native American Ministries, NE, Nebraska, recognition, reservation, Scottsbluff, Sherman Critser, South Dakota, teaching, tribe, tribute
Photo: Inside Klagetoh Shelter Mission Church of God.
By Emily Ploetz
Out in the remote, high desert of Arizona is a place of worship that has served the community on the Navajo reservation for many years. The Church of God outreach, Klagetoh Shelter Mission, is a guiding light for believers of all generations of local Native Americans. Pastor Ron Woodman has been involved in ministry for over forty years, and officially became the pastor at Klagetoh Shelter Mission in 1992. Since his ordination in Phoenix in 1973, he has been serving people living on the reservation through numerous ministries helping to speak truth and love into sometimes desperate situations. Continue reading
Posted in All Church of God, Home Missions, Western
Tagged Arizona, Emily Ploetz, home missions, Klagetoh, Klagetoh Shelter Mission Church of God, Maureen Woodman, Native American Ministries, Navajo, reservation, Ron Woodman
Photo: Dry desert landscape typifies much of the Navajo Reservation, on which the Church of God has an outreach at Klagetoh, Arizona.
By Carl Stagner
Time, drought, and poverty have caked layers of dust and grime between a toddler’s bruised and blistered toes. The boy’s father, unemployed for five years, is draped across a tear-stained sofa, too hung over to care. Across the mother’s wrinkled face, a blank stare speaks volumes. This is desolation on the reservation in America. Widespread addiction, abuse, and apathy have afflicted much of the Native American society. In Jesus Christ, hurt is met with hope and healing. Through the Church of God, renewed efforts are underway to take the hope of Jesus Christ to the often forgotten far reaches of our land. Great strides toward strengthening existing ministry and inspiring new outreach were made in January when leaders of the American Indian Council and devoted friends of Native American Ministries met together in Rapid City, South Dakota. Continue reading
Photo: Ryan Chapman prays for the Place of Promise at a groundbreaking ceremony in September 2013.
By Carl Stagner
Alcoholism, domestic abuse, and high unemployment are just a few of the issues that plague Native American culture in the United States. As if historical devastation and upheaval weren’t enough, today the communities that surround Church of God ministries on and near reservations deal with social ills that demand our attention. In recent years, the Church of God has taken steps to strengthen Native American Ministries. Next week, a team of Native American ministry leaders, advocates, and Church of God Ministries staff will convene in Rapid City, South Dakota, to plan strategically for the advancement of the kingdom on the home front. Continue reading