Q. Why did you choose the name “Ephphatha”?
A. The word “ephphatha” is found in Mark 7:34. An Aramaic word within the Greek text, it is left untranslated in modern versions especially since the gospel writer translates the word for us as meaning “Be opened.” As Christ speaks this word of command to heal a deaf and speech-impaired man and as this man begins to “speak plainly,” we are provided with something of a metaphor for an open, plain-speaking ministry of the church through the power of Christ’s Spirit. After ten years of ministry as a pastor, it is my conviction that the church needs to speak and teach more openly and plainly in discipling her covenant children and evangelizing unbelievers. Thus Ephphatha is committed to being open and speaking plainly and to encouraging and equipping the church to do the same.
Q. How do you pronounce “Ephphatha”?
A. I pronounce it exactly as it’s spelled: ef- fah- thah, with the accent on the first syllable.
Q. Why should I give to support Ephphatha Reformation Ministries?
A. Ephphatha Reformation Ministries is committed to a grassroots revival of the rich heritage of the Heidelberg Catechism. If you love the Catechism, here is something you can do to promote its use and favor among Reformed believers. I am currently working on a family devotional, entitled Comfort in Christ, that follows the Heidelberg Catechism, and also on a version of the Catechism for children, entitled the Young Heidelberg. These projects are slated for completion by the summer of 2009. However, these are only two projects within a series called the “Heidelberg Heritage,” and there are other projects in “dream stage” pending the financial support of those who love the Reformed faith and the Heidelberg Catechism.
Q. Aren’t there enough publishing ministries and devotional materials already?
A. Those who are satisfied with what’s being published and sold in bookstores today will not likely see the need for this effort. I am convinced that there is need for devotional materials that deal seriously and soundly with God’s Word instead of simply providing clever stories and inspirational anecdotes. It’s time to study the Word, to uphold the Word, to teach the Word, and Ephphatha Reformation Ministries is committed to doing so.
Q. How will my financial gift be used by Ephphatha Reformation Ministries?
A. Our current budget for 2011-2012 provides for a part-time Director of Ministry and anticipated printing costs for the completion of our next project, “Comfort in Christ.” The board of directors approves and oversees all use of funds. Please give as generously as you are able in response to God’s grace to you in Christ.