- Faith & Family
In the past week, the Reverend Stephanie E. Russell of Our Father’s House of Prayer Ministry Church in Miami Gardens has been forced to face trying times with the sudden death of one of the church’s associate pastors and a long-time friend, the Minister Robert Blunt.
“I am trying to keep things in perspective outside of this tremendous pain of the great loss of one of my senior ministers who was up for ordination for pastoral leadership; our prayers are with him and his entire family,” she said.
Once again she is relying upon her faith to sustain her.
“I heard a voice speak to me telling me to have confidence in the midst of this conflict,” Russell said. So, “yes, I’m resting on that.”
The beginning of Our Father House of Prayer Ministry
Ten years ago, Russell’s life was going through a period of turmoil but she was also able to weather the storm.
“At the time, I was divorcing, I was wrestling with whether or not my future lay in pastoral leadership position outside of the church where I was or inside and I was transitioning from my previous job field,” she recalled. ”The more confusing part was figuring out how could God transition me in all areas of my life at one time. But the confidence part was knowing that God was doing just that even if I didn’t understand it.”
By the time everything was settled, Russell had gone on to found her own ministry — Our Father — in Miami Gardens in 2002. The church’s congregation has grown to approximately 150 members and it offers a variety of ministries such as Young Adult and Men’s Ministry. Russell has also worked to ensure that the church offers a thriving Couples Ministry to help strengthen worshippers’ relationships.
“The Bible is based on relationships and no man or woman should feel like they are alone — everybody needs somebody,” she explained.
In addition to personal and spiritual enlightenment, Our Father’s House of Prayer Ministry also offers information to address physical health and nutrition. Three times a week at 7 p.m. — Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays — Russell teaches an aerobics class at the church.
“I believe in holistic training — not only of the body of Christ — but the physical body as well,” she said.
By Kaila Heard