OPHUS FAMILY

I grew up in Palatine, IL, and Krista grew up as a missionary kid in La Paz, Bolivia. Eventually her parents moved to the Chicago area, where her father worked at International Teams. Because of the connection to Alpine with people like the Knoxes, her family began attending Alpine in 1993. I met Krista in high school and she invited me to Alpine. I came to know the Lord at Alpine when I was 17 years old, and I was baptized there in 1996. Eventually Krista’s family moved to Costa Rica, and served as Alpine missionaries with International Teams for 17 years. Krista and I dated through college and we were married on January 1, 2000 at Alpine Chapel. After we were married, Krista and I worked with youth and kids ministries at Alpine until we left to be missionaries to Queretaro, Mexico. After working there for over two years, we moved to the Mexican immigrant community of Little Village, Chicago, where we have been the last 11 years. While living in Little Village, our family has grown. We have 3 kids: Jonathan (7), Hannah (5), and Isaac (2).

About four years ago, our ministry changed in the neighborhood, and we were asked to start a new church plant of New Life Community Church in the west side of our neighborhood. Our church plant has steadily grown over the time we have been here, and this growth has come through making new disciples. Our goal as a church is to cooperate with God in making disciples of Jesus, and this is done one on one as well as in small groups. Discipleship is emphasized at every level of ministry, whether it is mentoring at-risk youth, working with children, or reaching out to adults through services or small groups.

Primarily, our ministry serves people living on the west side of the Little Village neighborhood of Chicago. As a church we see the neighborhood as our “parish” and we take responsibility for issues impacting our community. Our goal is that no part of this parish would be invisible. My secondary roles include church planting in both other neighborhoods of Chicago as a part of New Life, as well as other global cities through our international ministries known as New Life Cities. My role in these ministries is primarily coaching and mobilizing.

As a local church pastor, we are obviously deeply integrated with our local church, but we also collaborate to varying degrees with other local churches in our neighborhood. We are fortunate that several of the local churches have a true kingdom mentality and during the last year we saw 5 local churches join together for fasting and prayer, community events like our annual Mexican Independence Day parade, a prayer march, and we even held a joint Sunday service in a local park. We are hoping to grow this collaboration for the good of the Kingdom and the good of Little Village.

As a church we see the neighborhood as our ‘parish’ and we take responsibility for issues impacting our community. Our goal is that no part of this parish would be invisible.