Small Ontario Migrant Ministry Has Big Impact

The Mexican migrant ministry of Springdale Christian Reformed Church and Holland Marsh CRC in Ontario has helped spread the gospel all the way to Mexico. “We are part of this amazing ministry that is sending the gospel message around the world,” said Rev. Richard Bodini, pastor of Holland Marsh CRC.

Each Sunday from May to October, a Spanish-language church service is held in Holland Marsh, an idea initiated by the Lise and Verkaik families. Volunteers from both churches help serve a meal, lead English classes and Bible studies, and assist with a clothing bank.

It was during their combined summer service that volunteers discovered the impact their ministry was having. The congregations, together with Bethel Community CRC of Newmarket, had gathered for worship and communion. They were holding a special collection to help support a member of the Mexican congregation, Margarito Valle, whose son Alejandro had died of injuries sustained in an accident. They collected almost $2,500. When they presented the check to Valle, they learned how the ministry in Ontario was having an impact in Mexico.

Since 1993, Alejandro Valle had come each summer to work in the Holland Marsh area; he started to attend the services at Holland Marsh in 2001. After being warmly embraced by those serving in this ministry, he became a Christian. He shared his faith with his family, and they also became believers. Valle began a house church, and since 2001 several other home churches have been planted from the Valles’ home in Mexico.

“We were stunned when we heard Valle’s testimony,” said Bodini. “Here is a quiet foreign home ministry that we had no idea existed. A ministry that has blessed hundreds of men has sprouted churches in another country. God is richly blessing and expanding his kingdom, one person at a time.”

The Mexican migrant ministry looks forward to beginning its 30th year of witness and fellowship this May.

Members of all the congregations enjoy a potluck after the combined worship service. The annual Dutch-Mexican soccer game is a beloved tradition for the Mexican migrant ministry.

About the Author

Krista Dam-Vandekuyt is a freelance news correspondent for The Banner. She lives in Jerseyville, Ontario.

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