By S. Allen
ELKTON, Md.—New Beginnings Christian Fellowship has ministered to the needs of the hungry, homeless, and those struggling with addictions since it opened its doors in October 2011. A Baptist Convention of Maryland/Delaware church plant, the congregation has met it’s share of challenges while reaching out to a county where heroin addiction and overdoses are more prevalent than almost anywhere else in the state.
The church, however, is finding new ways to meet these challenges head-on.
“God is doing some awesome things right now!” said Pastor Phil Meekins.
Meekins, who planted the church a little less than three years ago, is a 21-year-recovered drug addict and alcoholic who uses his testimony to reach out to others who struggle with addictions. In 2011 he felt the Lord leading him to start New Beginnings Outreach Ministries, a ministry that currently distributes food to more than 50 families every week, and from that ministry New Beginnings Christian Fellowship was born.
Now, in addition to meeting immediate physical needs, the church seeks to nourish the spiritual needs of the community. A Celebrate Recovery group meets weekly there. The church has often mentored and financially supported those struggling with substance abuse throughout their recovery process. Now they plan to open their own recovery homes to directly meet those needs.
“We’re hoping to officially open a recovery home for men called “The Monarch House” around the beginning of May,” said Meekins “We’re also planning to open the very first women’s recovery home in Cecil County sometime very soon.”
In addition to opening recovery homes to meet the overwhelming need in the community, the church is also going outside of it’s walls to take the support out to those who need it most through it’s “Mobile Missions” project.
Pastor Meekins and other members take a trailer of supplies and go directly to the neighborhoods around the church to give out necessities to addicts and their families. They are also partnering with nurses and other medical professionals to bring health advice and care to these homes. And, most importantly, they share the Gospel with those families.
“There is a huge need we’re trying to meet,” said Meekins.
Tim and Kathy Grace, a couple who attend the church, also take the trailer to car shows and community events to hand out water and food items to attendees. This opens the door for many conversations about the Gospel.
“The Lord is the center of everything we do; we do not take any claim to His glory,” said Meekins. “We never look down on anyone unless we’re helping them up.”
For more information about the ministries of New Beginnings Christian Fellowship, visit newbeginningschristianfellowship.com. Food donations for the New Beginnings Outreach Ministry can be dropped off at 1 Sparkler Lane, North East, MD.