The purpose of this site is to spread the Good News to the Deaf Ministry worldwide. “Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another- and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” Hebrews 10: 24.
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DMICOC is very grateful for all the support worldwide.”
My name is Britney Garstka, and I became a disciple on March 15th, 2008. I had spent one short semester at the University of Toledo where I was reached out to by Nino Bradley. I moved back home and transferred schools and continued to attend the Cleveland Church of Christ and was finally baptized in Cleveland. It was an eventful night! I had grown up as what I thought was a Christian. My mom had gone to seminary school and raised me and my 3 sisters up in accordance with the bible. We would have family fellowship at home most of the time, which was led by my mom. Occasionally we did attend church and I remember going to Sunday school a few times. I remember church being boring and more for grown-ups than for kids. When I started studying the bible in Toledo, I came to learn much more about the Bible than I had ever known before. The hardest lesson for me to learn was about baptism and how people become saved. My mother had always taught me that if I believed in my heart and confessed with my mouth that Jesus is Lord, then I would be saved. I did not learn about baptism and studying the Bible and living out the scriptures until I was in college. I ultimately decided that Jesus himself got baptized, so how could I be exempt? I desired to wash all my sins away and to be sure of my salvation instead of doubting it.
I had an interest in sign language early on in my life. I remember teaching myself the manual alphabet and memorizing it when I was in elementary or middle school. When I was a senior in high school, I finally had the opportunity to take ASL as a foreign language class. I loved it! During my short time in Toledo, I had discovered that I could pursue sign language even more and chose to change my major from nursing to become a sign language interpreter. I love the variety of places I go and the people I meet. I am forever learning new things and I love the opportunities and challenges that I am presented with.
I met my husband, Cliff Garstka, at the Ohio Valley Youth Camp in 2010. We were both camp counselors for the teens and although we barely spoke at camp, we found that we shared a love for the outdoors. After camp, Cliff considered taking me on an encouragement date. We are 7 years apart, and because of our age difference, he almost did not ask me on a date! He thought I was too young, and I thought he was too old. He decided to encourage me anyways, and we both hit it off immediately. We began dating after our 3rd date! We were finally engaged in December 2011 and married on May 5, 2012. We continue to serve the youth in the Cincinnati church and are now leading and ministering to the “Pre-teens”, which are our 7th and 8th graders.
Although we work with the youth, my time is divided between the kids and the Deaf ministry. Cyndie Imfeld is a sister in the Cincinnati church who also signs. She and I studied the bible with Robin, a deaf woman, and baptized her this year! We are excited to see answered prayers and growth in the Deaf Ministry. My first dream as a baby disciple, was to be involved in and to lead a deaf ministry. After a few years, that dream started to fade, but God is faithful! My husband, Cliff, has adopted my dream for a Deaf Ministry as one of his own, and is pursuing taking sign language classes. With the help of Cyndie’s husband, Kevin, Cliff has had a few studies with a deaf man who has been visiting. We both wonder what God’s plan is for the Deaf Ministry as well as for us. Maybe one day we will no longer be leading the youth and will be leading a Deaf Ministry! In the meantime, I am working as an interpreter and I also serve by interpreting on Sundays at the Cincinnati Church of Christ and for other church events.
I am encouraged to see the Deaf Ministry grow and pray for it to continue to grow! I love meeting new people and learning more about their lives. I hope to be able to share the gospel to deaf and hearing alike, and to grow the Deaf Ministry!
My favorite scripture is Proverbs 19:21, “Many are the plans in a man’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.”
On May 4th, 2013, DOCM (Deaf Open-Caption Movies), viewed “Iron Man 3” for it’s 14th Deaf event. This is the 1st Anniversary since Joe Cepeda started this event on May 2012. This event was sold out for 147 tickets. DOCM monthly events are growing strong and popular for the Deaf Community in San Antonio. Joe couldn’t able to attend this event due to his wife passing away on May 2nd in Oakville, Ontario in Canada while Michael Razzen and Nikki Gomez temporary replaced Joe’s role as hosts the the DOCM. They had an anniversary cookie cake to celebrate for this event to the Deaf Community friends.
Robert Downing Jr. as Tony Stark, billionaire and popular armor suit for the third installment of Iron Man films. This is his fourth film of Iron Man includes Avengers. Tony made a huge mistake for giving his mansion address to Mandarin for live television reporters. Terrorists have destroyed Tony’s mansion. How would Tony survive without his back-up suits? What is Tony mission to capture or kill the Mandarin? Tony had stress disorder and lack of sleeps daily to work on his projects to improve his advance technology for hid new suit. Iron Man 3 is an inspiring action and technical film, that you don’t want to miss during this hot summer 2013. Don’t forget to stay at the end of the movie to watch the post credit scene.
Special thanks from DOCM fans and the Deaf Community to Brandon Arceneaux, CEO of Alamo Drafthouse Cinema and Liz Burtz, Director of Special Events. We applause Michael and Nikki for all their hard work with creating, making and promoting our monthly DOCM flyers at the San Antonio College Interpreter Program and Facebook since May 2012. Thank you Brandon & Liz for your support to the Deaf Community!
A friendly reminder, all of our DOCM events are on Facebook. Once logged on, you can view the selections offered and vote. If you are new, you can create a username and password, then join the fun. Please log onto Facebook and type in DOCM for the vote poll. If you have not signed up, please do so. Once signed in, you will be able to read the post and vote. The link for DOCM is www.facebook.com/pages/Deaf-Open-Caption-Movie-DOCM/210705502306722.
We look forward to seeing everyone again at the 15th DOCM event for this month. It will be another popular movie for the Deaf Community on the same month of May.
My name is Cyndie Imfeld, and I help interpret at the Cincinnati Church of Christ. I
became a disciple in the summer of 1982. While taking summer classes at the Cincinnati
Conservatory of Music in my hometown of Cincinnati, a classmate, Robyn Church, reached
out to me and invited me to a commuter bible talk. I noticed immediately that Christianity
was real for the students in this bible talk. They shared openly about their lives and how
they were putting the scriptures into practice. I wanted what they had, and I expressed to
Robyn how Romans 7:15 described my life completely (…what I want to do I do not do, but
what I hate I do.) After about 3 weeks of personal bible study, I was baptized into Christ.
During my last year of college I took an ASL class for a language credit. Not long after
I graduated, a sister, Cindy Schneider told me that she had Neurofibromatosis, a disease that caused tumors to grow inside her body. Two of those tumors were in her ears and she knew their removal would cause her to be completely deaf. Together we took several sign
language classes to help her to transition into the deaf community and me to learn how to
interpret for her at church. Through the years we met and studied with several deaf people
and at least two became disciples. One, a deaf-blind woman named Donna LePiors, remained a faithful member of the Cincinnati Church of Christ for more than 20 years. About five years ago she moved to Michigan for health reasons but remains in contact with us. Cindy Schneider passed away around 2006. For several years we had no deaf ministry. This past summer, I reconnected with a deaf man, Charles, who had come out to church several times when I was first learning sign language. I hadn’t seen him for nearly 20 years but noticed him at a “deaf take-over” event downtown and invited him to visit church again. He came and liked it so much that he told his sister’s friend, Robin Edwards about it. Robin was new to Cincinnati and looking for a church. She showed up one Sunday in November and was baptized in March. It brought tears to our eyes to look up and see Robin rise out of the water. There were hundreds of arms waving in deaf applause and praise from the congregation!
After being in the singles ministry for several years, I married Kevin Imfeld, in 1989.
We recently became “empty nesters”. We have two daughters who are both disciples. Our
oldest, Stephanie, 21, was married to Kyle Pollock in December, and our youngest, Samantha, is 19 and active in the campus ministry at the University of Cincinnati. Kevin has learned some sign language from me and is enrolled in an ASL class to begin in May. Samantha has also taken an interest and is enrolled in ASL class next semester at U.C.
What inspires me most about the Deaf Ministry ICOC is being able to go to a seminar anywhere in the country and enjoy an instant connection with deaf disciples and interpreters. It’s not a connection based on a common language, but one based on a common relationship with Jesus Christ. I love how God has allowed modern technology to strengthen our communication. Skype, Face Time and texting make it even easier for deaf disciples and interpreters to encourage one another.
One of my favorite scriptures is Ephesians 3:20-21: “Now to him who is able to do
immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.” Because of God’s power, I believe that the Cincinnati Church of Christ Deaf Ministry is going to grow tremendously in number, in faith and in unit. I also believe that there will soon be more interpreters and deaf people of all ages and backgrounds praising God in ASL! To God be the glory!
1.WHO REACHED OUT TO YOU?
I was talking to a friend from Michigan on Video Phone and asked her if she knew of a good church in Cincinnati that I could attend. I was new to the city. She helped me get in contact with her brother who lives here to get his advice. When I talked with him later, he said that he was currently visiting a good church called the Cincinnati Church of Christ. He suggested that I try it.
2. WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO BECOME A DISCIPLE? WHEN DID YOU GET BAPTIZED?
I learned from Britney, Deb and Cyndie as we talked about God, discipleship and how to follow God. We got together regularly to study the bible. I was amazed when they told me about light and darkness. I realized from that study that I was in the darkness. I learned that to become a disciple I had to hear, believe, repent, confess that Jesus is Lord, and be baptized. That is what I needed to do to go from darkness to light. New life. That’s what I wanted. On March 17, 2013, I was baptized into Christ. I feel so good! I am the new Robin.
3. HOW DID YOU BECOME DEAF? WHEN DID YOU LEARN ASL?
I would say “unknown” based on a few different comments from my aunt, uncle and mom. I was very young, but I have no idea exactly how I became deaf or when it happened. I was 4 or 5 when I learned sign language. I learned it when I went to Kendall School for the Deaf on the campus of Gallaudet University in Washington DC.
4. WHICH BIBLE STUDY WAS YOUR BIGGEST CHALLENGE? WHY?
Peter replied, ” Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit”. WHY? Because it was challenging to learn that I was still in my sins. I needed to repent and be baptized. I wanted to be in the light and have a new life. I always want to be learning about the Bible and God. I understand that I still sin today, but I am so thankful for God’s forgiveness and this exciting new life! I want to continue to gain understanding and faith in God.
5. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE SCRIPTURE?
1 PETER 2:9-10
“But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation and God’s special possession that you may declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness and into His wonderful light. Once you were not a people but now you are the people of God. Once you had not received mercy. But now you have received mercy.”
WHY? Because being on the dark side means you’re not a Christian and many things are blocking you from having a relationship with God. When I became baptized, I came into the light. I shine as a new person to God. I am God’s daughter, full of blessings from God!!
6. WHAT IS YOUR VISION FOR THE DEAF MINISTRY AT CINCINNATI?
I want to see deaf people in Cincinnati come to God as disciples and know how good it feels to have new life. They need to understand about the Bible and God. They need to believe in God.
On March 9th, 2013, DOCM (Deaf Open-Caption Movies), viewed “Oz: The Great & Powerful” for it’s 12th Deaf event. It is the highest sold out for 150 tickets ever for our event.
When Oscar Diggs, a small-time circus magician with dubious ethics, is hurled away from dusty Kansas to the vibrant Land of Oz, he thinks he’s hit the jackpot-fame and fortune are his for the taking-that is until he meets three witches, Theodora, Evanora and Glinda, who are not convinced he is the great wizard everyone’s been expecting. Reluctantly drawn into the epic problems facing the Land of Oz and its inhabitants, Oscar must find out who is good and who is evil before it is too late. Putting his magical arts to use through illusion, ingenuity-and even a bit of wizardry-Oscar transforms himself not only into the great and powerful Wizard of Oz but into a better man as well.
Special thanks from DOCM fans and the Deaf Community to Brandon Arceneaux, CEO of Alamo Drafthouse Cinema and Liz Burtz, Director of Special Events. We applause Michael for all his hard work with creating, making and promoting our monthly DOCM flyers at the San Antonio College Interpreter Program and Facebook since May 2012. Thank you Brandon & Liz for your support to the Deaf Community!
A friendly reminder, all of our DOCM events are on Facebook. Once logged on, you can view the selections offered and vote. If you are new, you can create a username and password, then join the fun. Please log onto Facebook and type in DOCM for the vote poll. If you have not signed up, please do so. Once signed in, you will be able to read the post and vote.
We look forward to seeing everyone again at the 13th DOCM event in April 2013.
Joe Cepeda has a vision to encourage everyone in our Deaf Ministry family by having monthly live Deaf Devo Conferences through Google Hangout. During this voiceless video conference we will have begin and end with prayer and preach a few scriptures. Each person will get the opportunity to share one at a time and join together for one Kingdom song. This will be a fun and inspiring conference for our ministry!
Colossians 3: 14 “And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.”
The goal is once a month on Saturday for 1.5 hours from 4pm-5:30pm ET. We are scheduled to have the 1st Deaf Devo Conference on Saturday, March 23, 2013. I encourage everyone to be on time so that we can finish our conference on time. Anyone who is not able to make this conference, please contact Joe one week in advance at firstname.lastname@example.org that he can able to search for replacement if needed.
If you haven’t signed up for a Google account then go to www.gmail.com and follow instructions to setup your gmail account. After you signup for your gmail account, then you can download Google+ app for FREE at the App store on your iPhone, iPad or iPod. You are also able to download it on your PC or laptop. Before you start Google Hangout, make sure to close all internet windows so that they won’t interfere for video conference.
Also make sure plug in your battery while using this program to keep your device running normal and to avoid low battery power. Once you login into Google Hangout, click Communities icon then search for the Deaf Ministry ICOC. It is a private Community page for members who are deaf, hard of hearing, interpreters, disciples who are currently studying to become a future interpreters, & disciples who are ASL signers. Free video conference up to 10 people by using your laptop or PC. It does allow up to 9 video conference on your iPad 2 or greater. Our focus at this time will allow 9 disciples on this conference per month.
Yanzeu Guy Merlin is a Deaf Ministry Leader at Abidjan in Ivory Coast, West Africa. He is an amazing, spiritual, admirable brother who is lead by faith to lead God’s people. PLEASE check out the Deaf Ministry’s Facebook page that he created on March 30, 2012 at www.facebook.com/
I’m not sure if you’ve heard all that the our brothers and sisters have been enduring in Abidjan, but please encourage them if you can!
I am calling the Deaf Ministry around the world, as family members, to be connected to them for spiritual support and friendships. It’s so exciting to see all that they are doing for God!
Carole moved to Canada on January 5th, 2013 for two reasons: to be closer to her family and to receive Canadian Health Care on April 2013.
Carole suffers from constant, daily pain and is easily fatigued. Even with the many medications she’s been prescribed, it’s a challenge even getting up in the morning.
I have been praying daily for God to work a miracle. I would love nothing better than being there for Carole in her time of need, however, my job keeps me in San Antonio, Texas. In order to receive the necessary health care, I need to continue working. My employer is willing to allow me unpaid days off to visit Carole every other week in Canada, but, as you can imagine, the transportation costs will be significant. Moving to Canada would be ideal, unfortunately, seeking Canadian employment is a difficult task. Many documents will need to be settled and signed – very time-consuming and time is a commodity we just don’t have.
I have resorted to accepting donations via Paypal. I will use any funds raised for airfare, re-locating and, of course, medical expenses.
Thank you for your prayers and support to us.
Please visit Carole’s Facebook Page.