Maximizing Efforts for Relief, Care and Youth Worldwide

The Benevolent Arm of the International Christian Churches
Overseen by Nick and Denise Bordieri

Nick & Denise Bordieri with their daughters – Sonrisa and Makaela!

Nick and Denise are dearly beloved disciples by all of us in the City of Angels Church, where they serve as one of our shepherding couples. They also are integral members of the central leadership of the SoldOut Movement of churches. Nick was born in Hartford, Connecticut in 1959. At Trinity College, he received a BA in Intercultural Studies – Asian Focus. During those years, he was selected Second Team Small College All-American safety in football and an All-Eastern Conference catcher in baseball. After college, he moved to Asia to pursue his passions of mastering Mandarin Chinese, the martial arts and international business.

Nick learned Mandarin and attained a second degree black belt. In addition, he was hired by Nike and during his 20 year career was very fortunate to assume different positions in various parts of the world with the company, including Nike’s world headquarters in Portland, Oregon. This was where he met Denise Martus. Denise was born in San Bernardino, California in 1967, then raised in West Linn, Oregon. In time, Denise worked for the Albany Chamber of Commerce in Oregon, became a co-owner of ELDE Designs, yet in God’s sovereignty, she began to work at Nike’s world headquarters, where she met the man of her dreams, Nick Bordieri.

Nick and Denise were married in 1993. They served Nike not only in Portland, but also in Asia and South America. Though the Lord blessed them with two beautiful girls, Sonrisa (9) and Makaela (8), as well as great success in their careers, their marriage began to flounder. They even considered divorce. It was during these trying times that a disciple at Nike asked them to visit the Portland Church. At their very first service, they cried, because they found hope for their lives. They were baptized in 2001. Two years later, Nick was the non-full-time leader in charge of the church and was key to our moving to Portland in the summer of 2003.

Like Aquila and Priscilla with Paul, the Bordieris quickly became instrumental in Elena’s and my ministry to revive the Portland Church, as well as in initiating a new discipling movement to evangelize the nations in a generation. Indeed, they were the first couple Elena and I asked to go on the LA Mission Team to plant the City of Angels Church in 2007. After Nick and Denise wrestled for a week in prayer, Nick resigned his 20 year job at Nike and moved to LA! God blessed their sacrifice as Nick now works in upper management for Mattel Toys. Yet I believe that everything in the Bordieris’ backgrounds and even their painful life experiences have been God’s way of preparing Nick and Denise for His purpose for them – to lead the benevolent arm of the SoldOut Movement churches. And to God be the glory! KM

“There will always be poor people in the land. Therefore I command you to be openhanded toward your brothers and toward the poor and needy in your land.” Deuteronomy 15:11

“He who oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honors God.” Proverbs 14:31

“He who is kind to the poor lends to the Lord, and He will reward him for what he has done.” Proverbs 19:17

“Rich and poor have this in common: the Lord is the Maker of them all.” Proverbs 22:2

“A generous man will himself be blessed, for he shares his food with the poor.” Proverbs 22:9

“He who gives to the poor will lack nothing, but he who closes his eyes to them receives many curses.” Proverbs 28:27

“Seek justice, encourage the oppressed. Defend the cause of the fatherless, plead the case of the widow.” Isaiah 1:17

“The poor you will always have with you.” Matthew 26:11

“Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress.” James 1:27

After Kip and Elena asked us to consider leading the formation of a benevolent arm within our movement of churches around the world, we reflected on our experiences living, working and traveling in different regions of the world where we witnessed first-hand the poverty, despair and hopelessness of so many. We went back home to study the Scriptures to better understand what God had to say about the poor, the needy and the destitute. As we read, God made it very clear that there will always be the poor, the widows, the orphans and those who are in need among us. What was also very clear was His command, as disciples of Jesus Christ, to “give”, “defend”, “encourage”, “share”, “look after” and “be kind” to them. If we follow Jesus’ example of love and compassion for those in need, “we will honor God”. (Proverbs 14:31) However, “if we close our eyes to the poor we will receive many curses.” (Proverbs 28:27) As we read and prayed, we were broken and convicted seeing God’s heart toward those who are in need.

We are very excited and extremely humbled to be appointed to lead this effort for God’s new movement. At the 2008 Jubilee, we kicked it off with a contest to name our new benevolent organization. We received an overwhelming number of responses. Thank you to all who submitted names. After reading the many entries and through much prayer, we are very excited to announce the name of the new organization: MERCYworldwide, an acronym for Maximizing Efforts for Relief, Care and Youth worldwide. The winner of the contest is Shay Vloet.

MERCYworldwide seems a fitting name, as it reflects the character and the humble beginnings of this new movement. Just a few short years ago, God began gathering a remnant of sold-out, like-minded disciples from all walks of life and from different parts of the world in Portland, Oregon. Out of God’s MERCY, He raised us up from the ashes of despair, giving us a new life. With this small remnant, He began working powerfully to rebuild His Kingdom. Today, we stand as a unified movement of God, with over 30 congregations in 17 countries. The unique advantage we have to affect change in the world, both as a movement and as MERCYworldwide, is the unified, focused effort of all the disciples in our congregations around the world.

MERCYworldwide will start small, like the mustard seed in Jesus’ parable. To begin, each church planting in our young movement has agreed to contribute 2% of their weekly contribution to support the building of the MERCYworldwide organization. Initially, programs will minister to the needs of our local communities. In 2009, a Day of MERCY will be designated, at which time each of us within our local congregations will Maximize Efforts for Relief, Care and Youth in need within our communities. In time, the scope of our charitable work will broaden to national and international programs, which prayerfully will attract sponsors from the private sector, both individuals and corporations, and partnerships with larger benevolent organizations for greater impact.

MERCYworldwide will be led out of Los Angeles, but there will be MERCYworldwide representatives within each of our local churches, with specific responsibilities that include:

  1. Developing and coordinating programs for our local communities.
  2. Remaining connected to the central organization as we develop and implement programs at the national and international levels.

Nick in Vietnam in 1987!

We are thankful that Kip and Elena, who are leading our young movement of churches, gained tremendous experience in building a global, faith-based charity in HOPEworldwide. In 1991, the McKeans asked Bob and Pat Gempel to lead this fledgling effort to minister to the poor and needy around the world for the Boston Movement, which in 1994 was named the International Churches of Christ (ICOC). In 10 years time, HOPEworldwide built projects in over 80 countries, which included building homes for lepers in India, a free hospital in Cambodia, job training for young women who renounced their lifestyle of prostitution in Thailand, AIDS information and treatment in South Africa and Ivory Coast, partnering with orphanages for adoptions from China and Romania, soup kitchens in Russia, and in the United States, there was nationwide immunization canvassing, as well as free computer mentoring of less fortunate teenagers. This short list recognizes but a few of the amazing efforts of HOPEworldwide. During those years, Kip served as the Chairman of the Board for HOPEworldwide. As the leader of the movement, Kip, along with all the World Sector Leaders, was able to mobilize every member of the ICOC to participate in designated HOPEworldwide projects. Sadly, today the Gempels have retired from leading HOPEworldwide. The present HOPEworldwide leadership has expressed that they have no desire for any involvement from the new movement. Perhaps most discouraging of all the consequences of the ICOC reverting to the Mainline Church of Christ’s government of autonomy is, no longer can the entire ICOC fellowship be mobilized. However, with a central leadership, the SoldOut Movement, the International Christian Churches, will inspire and mobilize each and every member to be a volunteer force whether local or global, participating either personally and/or financially. Therefore, if you are “partners in the gospel” within the SoldOut Movement, it is now our honor and privilege to share with you in the work and blessings of MERCYworldwide!

By faith as a movement, we will take the gospel to all nations in this generation! Therefore, we envision programs in all the nations that meet the needs of “as many as possible”. Be assured, our benevolent dreams are not an end in themselves, but another way to testify to the light of Jesus in this very dark world. Therefore, by the MERCY of God, by the power of His Spirit unleashed through our tearful prayers, and by the unified volunteers from all of our churches, God will Maximize Efforts for Relief, Care and Youth worldwide! And to God be the glory!

Nick and Denise Bordieri

Mercy Worldwide Directory