Archive for the ‘Military & Veterans’ Category

Volunteers needed for Stand Down on the Delta in Antioch Sept. 8-11

Wednesday, August 30th, 2023

Delta Veterans Group to serve homeless and other military veterans, members of the public

By J.R. Wilson, Founder/ President, Delta Veterans Group

The next Stand Down on the Delta will be held in September 8-11, 2023, at the Contra Costa Event Park (fairgrounds) located in Antioch, CA presented by Delta Veterans Group (DVG).

DVG was proud to bring the first homeless and at-risk of becoming homeless veteran “Stand Down on the Delta” of its kind to Contra Costa County in September 2015. Stand Down on the Delta was a four-day, three-night event in which veterans were provided full medical treatments, court and legal services, DMV, chaplain services, housing, addiction and mental health counseling, employment and a myriad of other community services. During the event, veterans were also provided with clothing, meals, showers, sleeping tents, live entertainment and a safe place to “stand down” for the duration.

We will do the same for our veterans, this year as well.

Volunteers are needed to help serve our military veterans because VETERANS SERVED THEIR COUNTRY AND VETERANS SERVE THEIR COMMUNITIES!

Most services on Saturday, Sept. 9 will be open to the general public. You do not need to be a veteran to receive services that day.

Veterans and volunteers can register and obtain more information by visiting

Delta Veterans Group is comprised of both veteran and civilian volunteers who wish to serve veterans in their community. We strive to bring our veterans the four pillars of success – Housing, Employment, Health and Education – one which will not work without the other three. Through the four pillars of success as a veteran myself, I was able to find peace and balance in my life, and a chance to bring about positive changes for veterans in our community. Our goal is simple – to bring together all of the Veteran Service Organizations in our communities and champion support for our nation’s finest men and women veterans.

Delta Veterans Group 501(c)3 was founded in Contra Costa County in 2012 by Army veteran J.R. Wilson, DVG has now grown to provide services to surrounding Northern California areas including Alameda, Monterey, Napa, San Joaquin, San Francisco, and Solano counties.

Antioch missionaries share their experiences of Niger trip during military coup

Friday, August 18th, 2023
Mission team member Bobbi Jennings shares about her experience during the trip to Niger, as photos of her and fellow team member, Elidia Bird, with the pilots in the cockpit of their flight home, and with people in Niamey showed on the screen behind her during the Welcome Home Service at Cornerstone Christian Center on Sunday, August 13, 2023. Photos by Allen D. Payton unless noted

“what do we do? I’ve never been in a coup before…So, our team got together and prayed and worshiped the Lord… Let’s skip the panic part and say ‘the Lord will rescue us’. And you guys came together here and prayed. Then we said, let’s get to work,” – Pastor Steve Miner

“somebody from the embassy said the airport has refused fuel. But make no mistake we are leaving on this plane, today.” – Maria Miner

“The Lord is faithful, and I knew he was going to get us home” – college student Madison Heyer

By Allen D. Payton

During a Welcome Home service Sunday morning, August 13, 2023, 10 of the 11 missionaries from Antioch’s Cornerstone Christian Center and School shared their experiences while stranded for a week in Niger, following a military coup that shut down the West African nation’s borders. The only one who wasn’t there for the reunion was the youngest team member, Madison Heyer, the daughter of Principal Logan Heyer, as she had already returned to college preparing for the fall semester. (See related articles here and here)

Pastor Steve Miner speaks during the Welcome Home Service on Sunday, Aug. 13, 2023. Video screenshot

Pastor Steve Miner Shares About Trip

“We went to put on a camp for 250 children in the Niamey region. Our theme for this camp was the Kingdom of God over the kingdom of darkness. We felt attacks from the kingdom of darkness from the minute we got to SFO,” Pastor Steve Miner shared Sunday morning about the challenges they experienced on the trip.

“That’s Thursday night,” he continued. “We get to Niger on Saturday and all 22 bags don’t make it. We called Turkish Airlines. Sunday night we get a call from the airport and all 22 bags were there. We get there and they won’t release the bags to us. It was a shakedown. They wanted some money from us. They shake us down for $200. It’s all we had.”

“Then we faced an African rainstorm. By this time, it was well into Monday morning,” Miner said. “But we put on a camp. It was wonderful. The second to last day we were told it was a coup de tat. I think we learned of it from people back here. I thought ‘what do we do? I’ve never been in a coup before’.”

“It was the last day, we were supposed to go on an excursion to see the hippos. We were to go to the Radison Hotel the nicest one in Niger,” he continued. “We learned that day we weren’t going anywhere, and we couldn’t go on the hippo ride.”

“For Americans being told not to go where we wanted to go” was difficult the pastor explained.

But they had the help of “a Christian General from the American Air Force, we had the head of security from Samaritan’s Purse who started to text me. It was such a blessing.”

“Our airline tickets meant nothing, now,” he stated. “The Holy Spirit put a verse in my heart. Psalm 31. It was David who wrote, ‘Praise be to God for he showed me his love while I was in a city under siege,” reading from Psalm 31:21-22. “David was in fear.”

“We forget the thing the Lord brought us through last week, last month,” Miner continued.

“Yet, you heard my cry for mercy,” he finished reading the Bible passage. “So, our team got together and prayed and worshiped the Lord.”

“Let’s skip the panic part and say the Lord will rescue us,” Miner stated.  “And you guys came together here and prayed. Then we said, let’s get to work.”

“We got to put desks together. Fix desks. Sanded, primered. We washed walls,” he explained. “We were getting ready for a new school year.”

“We came back last Sunday. Praise the Lord,” Miner exclaimed.

The Cornerstone Christian Center and School mission team to Niger (L-R) Pastor Steve Miner, Maria Miner, Bobbi Jennings, Elidia Bird, Jennifer Bartoni, Jill Lawrence, Margret Rickli, Holly Heyer, Scott Wells and Nutce Castelluccio share during the Welcome Home Service on Sunday, August 13, 2023.

“Fox News who did the initial interview with us. They asked, ‘Would you do it, again?’ Everybody on the team said, ‘yeah, we’d do it again’. Because they understand what it means to be a disciple.”

“We are on mission here in Antioch. We have been sent,” he continued and saying “As the Father has sent me I am sending you,” quoting John 20:21.

“You feel the weight of people’s prayers lifting you up. You experience the presence of the Lord,” Miner stated.

“I wouldn’t trade living in the middle of a coup for anything. We get interviewed. It gives you a story to tell about God’s faithfulness,” the pastor continued.

“They said ‘yes, we’d go back’. And I said, “yes. We’re making disciples’,” he concluded.

Elidia Bird shares about her experience on the mission trip while photos of her and some of those in Niamey they went to serve showed on the big screen behind the team Sunday morning, Aug. 13, 2023.

Team Members Share of Their Experiences

Elidia Bird was the first to share saying “My biggest take away from this trip is the power of prayer…the partnership with God. The enemy was trying to stop us at the gate. But God had a plan.”

She then shared about a girl named Zarah (in photo) and that she wrote a letter to one of the girls.

“There’s no language barrier that can stop the Word of God,” Bird stated.

Nutce Castelluccio shares of his experience with the congregation as the team members look on and laugh.

“I wouldn’t want to be led by anyone else,” Nutce Castelluccio said of Pastor Steve and Maria Miner, when sharing of his experiences on the trip. “The kids. They were so joyful. When we worshiped, they’d be dancing and dancing.”

Pastor Steve’s wife, Maria Miner was next to share saying, “This is a faithfulness of God celebration.”

“I do know the reason this team was so amazing was we were supported by your prayers,” she continued.

She chose the Armor of God as the theme for the week. Maria read from Ephesians 6:10-18 which describes the parts of the armor and then said, “You will be proud to know that all of the children left that camp with that entire passage memorized.”

“I have never felt the schemes of the devil like I did in Niger, Africa,” she stated. “The final day we taught during the storm…all the power went out. There is a battle between the kingdom of God and the kingdom of darkness. Our weapons are invisible. I felt harassed by the enemy. When I felt weak…I reached out to people to pray with me. We would worship and pray and go do what the Lord had for us to do. We were not battling against flesh and blood.”

Maria Miner, Pastor Steve’s wife, shares about the theme of the Armor of God for the Vacation Bible School the team held while in Niger.

“We got to the airport. The airport was closed. There was one plane there, our plane,” Maria stated. “About four hours in somebody from the embassy said the airport has refused fuel. But make no mistake we are leaving on this plane, today. We may have to go to another country to get fueled. It was at that point I felt the Lord saying start praying.”

“Nine hours later we were on the plane and told to unbuckle…when we were refueling,” she continued. “Then they announced we have enough fuel to get to France.”

Jennifer Bartoni shared next saying, “We’re going back. I want to thank all of you guys for your prayers and support. My plan was to go to Mexico on a mission trip. But my passport didn’t come in on time. God had a plan for me to go to Niger.”

“I was scared. I reached out to God for strength,” she stated. “Before the trip I was afraid to fly, afraid to speak in front of people.”

Bartoni then quoted Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.”

“I asked God to help me face my fears. So, He did,” she stated.

When it was her turn to share Jill Lawrence said, “He knew this coup was coming. We didn’t.”

She spoke of facing health issues before they went.

“I sing on the worship team. Worship really speaks to my soul,” she stated.

“After the coup happened, I was asked to go share my testimony at a church there,” Lawrence continued. “We felt like the early church. We felt like we were in the Old Testament. We were tramping through the sand. The whole church, everyone was one accord. It was after the coup had happened. Had we left we would not have experienced it.”

 “We were able to tune into our local church service and worship with you” while at a home in Niger, she shared with the congregation. “It’s that one accord. God’s got you in the palm of his hand. That was what was so life changing about this trip.”

Team member Margret Rickli shares as a photo of her and two of the students and of her cleaning one of the classrooms in Niamey, Niger shows on the screen behind the team.

Margret Rickli shared next, saying, “This is my second year to go on the trip. I know on mission trips I hear God a little bit clearer. This one morning I heard very clear ‘wait’.”

“I’m a planner. I make my plans. My plan was to be home that week and set up my classroom. I was thinking ‘wait’? The plan was to be home. God spoke to me and said my plans are what’s best. This weight came off my back.”

She spoke of cleaning and organizing the classrooms in Naimey.

“I would have never had that experience had I not been there,” Rickli stated.

“A group of girls came running up to me and I said those are my girls,” she continued. “My family was back here…sometimes at 3 and 4 in the morning I was on the phone with them.”

They set up her classroom back here.

“That’s one of the ways God showed me the waiting,” Rickli shared. “God was not just working in us, there he was working in you. I just needed to see, let go, let God. Be patient. I just thank Him for that opportunity, this year.”

Antioch missionaries Scott Wells with his daughter, Holly (left) and granddaughter Madison Heyer at the airport in Niger preparing to fly to France on Friday, Aug. 4, 2023. Photo courtesy of Logan Heyer.

Scott Wells, Holly Heyer’s father and Madison’s grandfather shared next saying, “What I learned is God can use you no matter how old you are.”

“We’re missing someone up here. Maddy’s back at college,” he continued. “My wife stayed home. Sheila (his other daughter who lives in southern California) came up and stayed with her.”

“We worked. We couldn’t go home. We prayed. We worshiped every morning,” Wells said. “We said, ‘OK, God. We’re here, what do you want us to do?’”

“I was a teacher, a principal for 41 years and that’s what we did,” he stated. “It was familiar to me to go to the school every day…and fix desks. We worked for the Lord.”

“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord…for it is the Lord Christ you are serving,” Wells said quoting Colossians 3:23-24.

“It was a blessing to me just to help that school. We got to do a little part to help them for that school year coming up,” he added.

Holly Heyer, whose husband, Logan, is the principal of Cornerstone Christian School, and was on the trip with their daughter and Holly’s father shares about her experience as photos of her in Niger show on the screen.

Holly Heyer, Wells’ daughter and Madison’s mother shared last saying, “We were a trio. Dad, me and Madison. But this team is my family. We lived that way for a while.”

“Our bonus time we were there, as we called it…some of us were scared. I never felt more peaceful in my life,” she continued. “We’re here. We’re working together and we felt the peace of God. I know that was from your prayers, here.”

“We were just praying. People were in random, different rooms. If a song came up to somebody, we were just singing. Praying for the preschool kids because this is where they’re going to meet Jesus,” Heyer said. “It was a blessing for us just to be praying for the kids. They’re just the same people. They have a school, it’s just in Niger. I got to pray for them. I got to see some of the kids. They’re so precious. I wanted to bring them home with us.”

“Scraping gum for Jesus,” she said with a chuckle.

Bobbi Jennings shared about their trip home.

“We land in Washington DC. We’re all still together. Then the separation starts,” she stated. “We came as a team. We wanted to leave us a team. But that was not to be. It was hard. Steve and Maria were frantically trying to get flights for us. So, we went in four groups. I wanted to be with our team, with our family. It was on the last flight, that last plane in Texas we were able to be together.”

She and Elidia were together on the flight. They were able to get into the cockpit and take a photo with the pilots after sharing about their trip and photos.

“I said, ‘you know, you’re our final flight home. Can I pray over you?’ So, I prayed over our pilots,” Jennings said. “I said, ‘when I get home, I’m going to get down on the ground and kiss it’ and I did.”

“I give all the thanks and glory to God,” she added.

Pastor Steve closed out the sharing time and service saying, “I have to say thank you to you and to Hannah (Foster) and Logan (Heyer). I think they lost more sleep than we did.”

“We all had a part in this. My mom in Texas went to her Senator’s office,” he continued. “There’s nothing better than to be a part of the family of God. We had people back home working their tails off. I just want to thank you.”

“We are on a mission and Antioch needs us. And the Lord has placed us here for a reason,” Miner stated. “We’re going to be strong abroad. But we’re going to be really strong, here…where we live. We’re going to get after it.”

Madison Heyer (back row left in lavender shirt) and team in Niger. Madison (right) with her mother, Holly on the plane to France on Friday, Aug. 4, 2023. Photos courtesy of Logan Heyer

College Student Madison Heyer Shares About Her First International Trip

When reached for comment about her experience, Madison Heyer, a 2022 graduate of Cornerstone Christian High School said, “When everything went haywire with the coup, I was thinking, this is a bummer, I have to get home and get back to school. But I had to rethink and change my heart and determine what the Lord wanted me to do. I thought, ‘you have to go where the Lord wants you to go and do’.”

She’s a sophomore at California Baptist University and a Resident Assistant in one of the apartment complexes on campus which required her to return before school starts September 5th. Madison is studying elementary education, following in her grandfather’s, grandmother’s, dad’s, mom’s and older sisters’ footsteps who have all been or are currently educators. She’s also minoring in Christian Studies.

About her trip experience Madison said, “the whole time, I was really excited to go, it was VBS (Vacation Bible School) and something I wanted to do for my career. I was doing the most as possible since I was the kid. No one required me to. But I wanted to be as helpful as I could.”

“This was my first international trip and what a story,” she exclaimed.

“My first thought was disbelief. Especially with the missionaries (Pastor Neil and Dannette Childs) who are there,” Madison shared. “With the news, there, it isn’t always accurate. It was initial fear. Then lots of questions came to mind. How was I going to get back to school? Are we able to fly home? Can we finish Vacation Bible School?”

“I was thinking, I’m going to finish that VBS program, then decide what else to do,” she continued. “We rallied around with the team and prayed. Pastor Steve was really great. We didn’t let the kids know about the coup.”

They did finish the VBS and “we ended up deciding to help even more to get the school ready for when the school year starts in October,” Madison shared.

“I was helping out the same way (as the others on the team), cleaning the classrooms. What I did, specifically was scrape the gum off the floor,” she said with a laugh. “I did a lot of sweeping. I was happy to do it.”

“I was communicating with my boyfriend (who is a student at CBU) through Whatsapp, and he was kind of freaking out. So, he called the White House,” Madison shared with another laugh.

About the trip home she said, “That was one of the scariest points. We were in the airport, and we could see the plane. They said, ‘we don’t have any gas for this plane’. So, I was praying a lot about that. Then we got on the plane, and they said we have enough gas to get to France. That was such a relief.”

Asked about her future plans and what she wants to do with her degree Madison responded, “I’ll go on mission trips in the future. That’s what the Lord has called me to do. I have a strong call for missions. I want to teach overseas, probably teach missionaries’ kids. Teach children in different countries, especially about Jesus.”

“With my mom being there, that was a blessing. It was such a comfort. So was my grandpa. It was so exciting being there with her. It’s something my siblings didn’t get to do. She’s truly amazing,” Madison stated.

“The Lord is faithful, and I knew he was going to get us home,” she added.

Pastor Steve Thanks Senator, Congressman

Pastor Steve gets a hug from Principal Logan Heyer during the first church service after the trip on Sunday, August 6, 2023.

During the previous week’s service, Pastor Steve offered thanks to those who helped the team leave Niger and return home.

“First of all, I am so grateful to be part of such an incredible family. The support and efforts from people back home have been incredible. We would not be home today if it were not for their prayer and actions,” he said. “Hannah and Logan galvanized so many people into action including our government. If it wasn’t for our people making them aware there is no way they would know we were even there.”

“And I am grateful that Senator Feinstein’s and Rep. Garamendi’s offices listened and went into action,” the pastor continued. “When the State Department called me in Niger to tell me they were going to take our team, I thanked him and he said, ‘You can thank your congressmen and senator for this’. So, I am grateful that they truly did represent their constituents.”

“I hope everyone can experience the power of Jesus through a healthy church as we during this crisis. If everyone did we would have less coups in the world!” he added.

For more information about Cornerstone Christian Center and School visit their websites at and

Antioch missionaries stranded in Niger on flight to France Friday morning

Friday, August 4th, 2023
Antioch missionaries serving in Niamey, Niger and at the airport Friday morning, August, 4, 2023. Photos courtesy of Cornerstone Christian School.

Niger had refused to refuel plane, State Department negotiated

“Just pulled up from the runway. Super emotional.” – Pastor Steve Miner of Cornerstone Christian Center

“They have passed the borders and are three-and-a-half hours out of Paris.” – Logan Heyer, Principal, Cornerstone Christian School

Holly and Madison Heyer on the plane to France Friday, August 4, 2023. Photo courtesy of Logan Heyer

By Allen D. Payton

A team of 11 missionaries from Antioch’s Cornerstone Christian Center and School were stranded in the West African country of Niger, following a military coup, last week. They were supposed to fly back last Friday, July 28 and be home by Saturday. But they were not permitted as the borders had all been closed. (See related article)

According to Ron Eckstein, spokesman for U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein’s Office in Washington, D.C. in a phone call at 11:45 AM Friday, August 4, 2023, “the 11 individuals are on a flight to France. We were told by the State Department. It departed about 11 AM Pacific Time. Our office has been working on it since Tuesday, August 1.”

“I was not expecting such a positive resolution. But good news,” he added.

A post on Corrnerstone Christian School’s Facebook page at  11 a.m. Friday reads, “On behalf of Cornerstone Christian Center and Cornerstone Christian School we are so incredibly grateful to be able to announce that our Niger Mission team is safely on their way home. We would like to thank the offices of Senator Feinstein and Congressman Garamendi for their consistent support and vital information over these trying days. We are so thankful for the help of the State Department and the U.S. Embassy in Niger. We would also like to recognize the effort of KTVU FOX 2, KRON 4 and the Antioch Herald for their assistance in spreading awareness of this serious situation and their care and attention for our family members back home. The professionalism and concern that was demonstrated for this situation by our local media was truly amazing. Last, and most importantly, we would like to thank our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ for his continuous protection and care for our team while they were serving in Niger.

Our focus now turns solely to the people of Niger and our thoughts and prayers will be directed for peace in that nation and that democracy will continue to be pursued so that the nation of Niger can be free. Thank you for all your prayers and support during this challenging time. The people of Cornerstone are what make this place one of a kind and I am personally grateful to be a part of such a special place. Our team landed in Niger 16 days ago with the goal of making much of the name of Jesus and we return knowing that His name was high and lifted up.”

School Principal Says Niger Was Not Going to Refuel the Plane

When reached for details at 12:15 p.m., school principal Logan Heyer, whose wife, Holly and daughter, Madison are among the 11, exclaimed, “They have passed the borders and are three-and-a-half hours out of Paris.”

“They got to the airport about 2 AM our time, which was 10 AM their time and sat there for about an hour but Niger was refusing to refuel the plane,” he shared. “So, I got a hold of Senator Feinstein’s office and they said they had been in contact with the State Department who were already negotiating with whoever is in charge of Niger, at this point.”

“I got a Whatsapp from Holly saying, ‘we’re on the plane. We don’t know where we’re going,’” Heyer stated. “Then a few minutes later she shared ‘it looks like we have enough fuel to get to France.’”

“Then we got the photos from them in the airport and one of Holly and Madison in the plane,” he continued. “Then I got a Whatsapp message from Pastor Steve that read, ‘just pulled up from the runway. Super emotional.’”

Asked if they expect to be back in Antioch tomorrow Heyer said, “She didn’t even have time to tell me the rest of it. She just knew they were going to Paris. They’re expected to arrive in about three hours.“

“Senator Feinstein’s and Congressman Garamendi’s office have been very helpful. They’re everything you could hope for in a representative. I was proud to be an American, today,” he added.

Antioch missionaries stranded in Niger following military coup

Thursday, August 3rd, 2023
Instagram post on July 28, 2023 of Cornerstone Christian Center & School missionaries in Niger. Source: Hannah Gabrielle

Team of 11 from Cornerstone Christian Center and School

“We sent our team to Niger to make much of the name of Jesus in that country and believe they are still doing that, and we are trusting in Him to bring them home, safely,” Principal Logan Heyer

By Allen D. Payton

A missionary team from Antioch’s Cornerstone Christian Center and School, led by Pastor and Superintendent Steve Miner has been stranded in Niger, Africa following a military coup.

In a post on her Facebook page on Wednesday, August 2, 2023, Hannah Gabrielle wrote, “My family is stranded in Niger Africa. The US government has evacuated part of its embassy staff but has been unhelpful in helping us get our family out! Help me spread the word. Share and pray. Whatever you can do. Email a congressman or senator. Call the local news. Anything helps. They are in a group of 15 US citizens ages ranging from 11 to 73.

On Friday, the team posted a photo from capital city Niamey, Niger, on the church’s Instagram page that reads, “Our Cornerstone Team has had an amazing week serving at Vie Abondante kids camp in Niger!”

Photos courtesy of Logan Heyer, Cornerstone Christian Center & School.

A Sunday report by the Marine Corps Times confirmed her information about the U.S. Embassy that reads, “The Marine security guards stationed at the American embassy in Niger will remain there as the United States evacuates all but essential staff because of a coup in the country.”

A Wednesday, Aug. 2 post on X (formerly Twitter) by U.S. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken reads, “Today, we ordered the temporary departure of non-emergency personnel and eligible family members from Niger. The U.S. is committed to our relationship with the people of Niger. The embassy remains open, and our leaders are diplomatically engaged at the highest levels.”

Logan Heyer, Principal of Cornerstone Christian School, said about the missionaries, “They were supposed to be back on July 29.”

He learned of the coup, early last week.

“I looked at an article in the news that there was a coup in Niger, and I heard about it on the 25th,” he stated. “The coup closed all the borders in Niger.”

The team left for their trip on July 20th.

“They were supposed to leave on Friday, July 28th to return,” Heyer shared.

Asked if any students are on the trip, Heyer said, “No. One former student, my daughter, Madison. My wife, Holly is also there and my father-in-law, Scott Wells. School starts again on Aug. 21st. No teachers. But our head pastor and school superintendent is over there, Steve Miner, with his wife, Maria.”

“There are 11 from our church and school, about 15 total,” he added.

“We have partnered with a missionary that lives there in the country,” Heyer explained. “They went to do a Vacation Bible School and get their school ready for the fall, too.”

This is the second time the team has gone to Niger.

“Pastor Steve has led two teams,” he added.

“It sounds like, from what I understand, the Royal Guard kicked out the president. It’s not targeted at Christians.

According to a July 27 report by NPR, “Soldiers in Niger have announced a coup, imposing a curfew and closing borders in a country that is a key U.S. ally in West Africa. The president of…Niger was removed in a coup late last night, local time, despite frantic diplomatic efforts to save his government.”

Asked about efforts to get the team out of the country Heyer said, “We saw online that Senator Ted Cruz got missionaries out from Niger – teenagers on a mission trip not from our group. But they met up with them. Their parents were very frightened, like we are. Senator Cruz was able to get them out of the country on an Italian plane. We saw that the Italians and French got people out.So, we contacted Senator Feinstein and Congressman Garamendi on Tuesday, and they have been pushing whomever at the State Department to get our people out.”

A KRON4 News report about the stranded missionaries, quotes Garamendi saying, “My team is working closely with the state department and the constituents to get them home safely. However, I cannot share additional details at this time due to operational security issues.”

According to a report by Reuters early Wednesday, Niger has reopened it’s borders with several neighboring countries “a week after a coup that has sent shockwaves across West Africa’s Sahel region, one of the poorest and most unstable in the world.”

‘The land and air borders with Algeria, Burkina Faso, Mali, Libya and Chad are re-opened from today, August 1, 2023,’ junta spokesperson Colonel Amadou Abdramane said in a televised address.”

“We sent our team to Niger to make much of the name of Jesus in that country and believe they are still doing that, and we are trusting in Him to bring them home, safely,” Heyer stated.

Private prayer vigils are being held for the team, he shared.

Antioch to honor those who sacrificed all during Memorial Day ceremonies Monday, May 29

Tuesday, May 23rd, 2023

By J.R. Wilson, Delta Veterans Group

The annual Antioch Memorial Day ceremonies and activities will be held Monday, May 29 in remembrance of those service men and women who gave their lives for our country at the Oak View Memorial Park Cemetery on 2500 E. 18th Street.

The day begins with a Pancake Breakfast hosted by the Antioch Rivertown Veterans Lion’s Club at 8:00 a.m. followed by the Memorial Service at 10:00 a.m. Our speaker is Assemblyman Tim Grayson. We will also have youth speakers, followed by the Reading of the Names of Antioch Veterans that have passed away, an explanation of the 13 folds of a U.S. flag, the P.O.W. Table, recognition of our First Responders by laying a rose at their memorial and much more.

The day’s activities will conclude with a Memorial Day BBQ beginning at 1:00 p.m. at the Antioch VFW Post 6435 located at 815 Fulton Shipyard Road

Antioch Police to hold annual community meeting on use of military equipment Thursday

Wednesday, May 10th, 2023
The APD Rescue Vehicle, a Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicle, is an example of military equipment periodically used by the department. Herald file photo.

By PIO Ashley Crandell, Antioch Police Department

On Thursday, May 11, 2023 at 4:00 p.m. the Antioch Police Department is hosting a community meeting pertaining to Assembly Bill (AB) 481 – Military Equipment Policy (#706) Annual Report.

This meeting allows the community the opportunity to discuss and ask questions regarding the annual military equipment report and the law enforcement agency’s funding, acquisition, or use of military equipment.

Please refer to the meeting’s agenda.

Celebrate Antioch Foundation announces 2023 Rivertown Events

Tuesday, February 28th, 2023

Celebrate Antioch Foundation and the Rivertown Merchants announces their 2023 list of events in Antioch’s historic, downtown Rivertown in beginning in April. Some events will be hosted by or with other community partners. Download, print and post this flier on your refrigerator or save it in your phone’s photo album and add the list below to your calendar as reminders! To participate or for more information visit or

2023 Celebrate Antioch Events

  • April 8 – Easter Egg Hunt – Rivertown Merchants
  • April 22 – Keep Antioch Beautiful – Antioch Parks & Rec Department
  • May 13 – Rivertown Wine Walk & Artisan Fair – Celebrate Antioch Foundation
  • June 17-19 – Juneteenth Celebration – DVG/Celebrate Antioch Foundation
  • June 18 – Father’s Day Car Show – Celebrate Antioch Foundation
  • August 19 – Hot August Cruise Night/Movie at El Campanil Theatre – Celebrate Antioch Foundation/El Campanil Theatre
  • September 9 – Rivertown Peddler’s Faire – Celebrate Antioch Foundation
  • October 7 – Fall Fest/BBQ Cook-Off – Celebrate Antioch Foundation
  • October 28 -Rivertown Trunk or Treating Car Show – Hot Rods 4 Paws/Celebrate Antioch Foundation
  • November 11 – Veteran’s Parade – DVG – Delta Veteran’s Group
  • November 25 – Small Business Saturday – Rivertown Merchants
  • December 2 – Holiday Sip & Shop Craft Fair – Celebrate Antioch Foundation

Help with Stand Down on the Delta 2023 to benefit veterans in Contra Costa

Thursday, February 9th, 2023

Join Virtually

March 7, 2023
April 11, 2023
May 9, 2023