In Ireland, the most popular greeting is, “What’s the craic?” Craic means “news, gossip, banter,” and the greeting means something like, “What’s the news? What’s happening?” So here’s the craic at Ozark: last fall we welcomed Dr. Rick Cherok as our new church history professor. That’s good news because:
- He’s spiritually mature. Rick’s been following Jesus a long time, his faith is real, and Rick’s students and colleagues tell of his humble, down-to-earth attitude.
- He’s academically qualified. Dr. Cherok taught at Cincinnati Christian University for twenty years, serves on the Stone-Campbell Journal board, and earned scholarly honors.
- He’s ministry focused. Rick has served as a youth minister, preaching minister, and loves college students so much he was CCU’s men’s dorm residence director for thirteen years.
My favorite: he’s got a Great Commission heart. In 2012, Rick founded Celtic Christian Mission, an outreach ministry to Ireland. Like the rest of post-Christian Europe, Ireland has discarded its Christian past. Faith among young people is at an all-time low, and as a British professor wrote, “Christianity as a default is gone. The new default setting is ‘no religion.’”
But for several years, Rick Cherok has traveled with student groups to the Emerald Isle. This month, Dr. Cherok will lead a group of twenty college students—taking prayer walks, doing service projects, working with Irish youth, and casting a vision for Ireland’s need for kingdom workers. These students will have a “wee” bit of fun, meet some new “mates,” and when asked, “What’s the craic?” they can share the best answer: the good news of Jesus.
When you partner with OCC, you help faculty members like Rick Cherok train the next generation of Great Commission leaders. You are preparing students who will someday make disciples in America and Mexico, Uganda and Japan, Brazil and Australia, Turkey and Ireland (Matt 28:19-20). Thank you for your partnership! We are grateful for you, and as they say in Ireland, “Sìochàn leat.” (“Peace be with you.”)