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Photos and video: Oklahoma church’s 10th Missions Sunday raises more than $700,000



Permit me to boast just a bit about what God’s doing through my home congregation.

A sign in the foyer of the Memorial Road Church of Christ points to the pavilions set up for Missions Sunday. (Photo by Erik Tryggestad)

The Memorial Road Church of Christ in Edmond, Okla., just completed its 10th Missions Sunday. In the past decade, church members have contributed more than $6 million to mission efforts around the globe — including Kenya, Australia, Austria and Brazil. The church supports medical missions in Guatemala, multiple ministries in Honduras, the Give A Goat ministry that serves the Philippines and sponsors a ministry apprentice program called Helpers in Missions.
The church also supports work in Oklahoma, including the Capitol Hill Church of Christ, the Luther Church of Christ, the Spanish-speaking Southeast Church of Christ and an outreach at an apartment complex near the church’s building.
For its 10th Missions Sunday, the church transformed classrooms in its building into six regions of the world where is supports work — Latin America, the Pacific Rim, Brazil, Africa, Europe and Oklahoma City.
During Bible class and after Sunday worship, church members and visitors got the chance to carry water on their heads (something children at the Village of Hope in Ghana do everyday), hammer nails into a simulated Honduran house and sample cuisines from around the globe, including Brazilian bonbons known as “brigadeiros” (loved them) and authentic Australian Vegemite (did NOT love it).
Weeks before the event, church members were issued “passports” describing each of the regions and the financial goals of Missions Sunday. During the Sundays leading up to Missions Sunday, the members added “visa” stickers for each of the regions. Each of the six pavilions had immigration stations, complete with passport stamps. (Yes, you even had to go through customs to get into the Oklahoma City pavilion.)
The church set a goal of $707,500 for this year’s Mission Sunday. During an afternoon devotional after the offering, missions ministry director John Wilguess announced the total — $724,446.98.
A few photos from the event:

Pat Beckloff, missionary to Mombasa, Kenya, sets up a Kenyan home in the Africa pavilion. (Photo by Erik Tryggestad)

Gwen Antwine, former missionary to Germany, stands next to the simulated Berlin Wall in the Europe pavilion. (Photo by Erik Tryggestad)

Ralph Burcham, former missionary to Vietnam, reads from Hebrews 9 during the Lord’s Supper. (Photo by Erik Tryggestad)

A Chinese dragon roams outside the Pacific Rim pavilion. (Photo by Erik Tryggestad)

Allen Dutton Jr., a second-generation missionary to Brazil, speaks after Bible class in the Brazil pavilion. (Photo by Erik Tryggestad)

Woody Loden Jr. supervises construction of a Honduran house in the Latin America pavilion. (Photo by Erik Tryggestad)

Ben Langford, former missionary to Uganda, supervises children as they transport water in the Africa pavilion. (Photo by Erik Tryggestad)

Photos in the Oklahoma City pavilion display the church’s local work. (Photo by Erik Tryggestad)

Visitors to the Pacific Rim pavilion were treated to music from an Australian didgeridoo. (Photo by Erik Tryggestad)

The Memorial Road church combined its two Sunday services for Missions Sunday. (Photo by Erik Tryggestad)

  • Feedback
    How many members does Memorial have?
    We thank God for what you did to help bring many lost souls to Christ.
    We also thank you for setting such a great and wonderful example for all of the rest of us.
    Jerry Tindel
    July, 17 2012

    Jerry: MRCC has somewhere in the neighborhood of 2,500 members, I would estimate.
    Erik Tryggestad
    July, 17 2012

    I am most interested in the picture of Ralph Burcham—He looks just like a teacher I remember at Sweetwater, OK back in the 50’s. I also served in the US Army Nurse Corps in 1968 in Vietnam and worshipped with a group of Christians that met at an Air Force chapel on the Vung Tau air base not too far from the 36th Evac Hospital. I would love to know more about Ralph Burcham’s work in Vietnam, years there, etc.
    Judy Matlock Coomer
    July, 21 2012

    Judy: Ask and ye shall receive. Please see this <a href=”https://www.christianchronicle.org/blog/2011/10/church-members-remember-terror-and-triumphs-of-mission-work-in-vietnam/” rel=”nofollow”>earlier blog post</a> about Burcham’s experiences in Vietnam, and <a href=”https://www.christianchronicle.org/blog/2012/03/christians-mourn-two-stalwarts-of-the-church-in-vietnam/” rel=”nofollow”>this post</a> about the death of longtime Vietnamese church leader Can Van Tran.
    Erik Tryggestad
    July, 21 2012

    To Judy Matlock Coomer; the teacher at Sweetwater was my dad, Scott Burcham. My wife and I and our two children served in Vietnam as full-time missionaries from 1966 to 1968, when we had to leave during the Tet Offensive; then I returned for four months in 1969; my wife and I worked in Vietnam for four months in 1973. When Vietnam fell in 1975, our congregation sponsored many of the Vietnamese Christians who were able to get out. Ralph Burcham
    Ralph Burcham
    July, 24 2012

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