Editor’s Note: Dr. David Silvernail Jr., senior pastor of Potomac Hills Presbyterian Church in Leesburg, Va., left the 41st General Assembly feeling good about where the PCA is going. Despite the debates and the all-too-evident theological tensions, Silvernail sees God at work in the PCA, and he points to seven of the clearest examples.
Mission to North America (MNA) placed 43 new church planters on the field in 2012. During the past three years, we’re averaging 52 church plants per year — one a week — for a three-year total of 156 new PCA churches (see Commissioners Handbook, page 603). That’s 156 church plants! That’s awesome!
Look at the list of ministries MNA has going now: African American, Church Planting Spouses, Haitian American, Hispanic American, Korean Ministries, Leadership and Ministry Preparation (LAMP), Native American/First Nations, Network of Portuguese Speaking Churches, Urban and Mercy Ministries, Western Church Planting Network, Chaplain Ministries, English as a Second Language, Metanoia Prison Ministries, Ministry to State, SecondCareer, Disaster Response, and Special Needs. That’s reaching out to a lot of people with a positive effect on our local churches!
Christian Education and Publications (CEP) Dr. Stephen Estock is the new coordinator of CEP, and he’s bringing a renewed emphasis to the ministry, equipping the local church to more effectively disciple our men, women, youth, and children.
Reformed University Fellowship (RUF) We have RUF chapters on 140 college campuses in the U.S. — eight schools this year alone. In my own state of Virginia, we have nine RUF chapters. RUF is reaching college students and bringing them into our churches.
RUF-Global is at work on college campuses overseas, and RUF-International is reaching out to thousands of international students who have come here to study. We’re forever reading about how the local church is losing college students. Here’s one way to fight that trend: Find the RUF chapter closest to your church and support it financially.
Mission to the World has 641 career missionaries, 119 two-year missionaries, and 354 one-year missionaries. Those 1,114 missionaries now serve in 85 countries alongside 1,005 National Partners.
Ridge Haven Conference and Retreat Center was on the brink of financial ruin just a few years ago. Now, under the leadership of executive director Wallace Anderson, Ridge Haven is no longer in danger. More camps and conferences, new and improved facilities, greater financial stability — thanks be to God.
Covenant College and Covenant Theological Seminary are both doing well, and both have new leadership. We need to be praying for Derek Halvorson and Mark Dalbey, that with and through their leadership God will further the Reformed Faith and a biblical worldview among our students. Halvorson has asked us to pray, promote, and provide for the college; I’m sure Dalbey would appreciate the same for CTS. My church has had several graduates of both schools, and they’ve had a profound impact on the congregation.
Behind the Scenes. And there’s the key work of the PCA Foundation, PCA Retirement & Benefits, and the Administrative Committee, where I had the privilege to serve. These may not be as glamorous as the others, but we don’t function well without them. They deserve our prayer and support.
The one thing that was abundantly clear at this year’s Assembly was this: God is at work in the PCA.