Providing Shelter: Offering a Safe Haven in the Storms of Life

Providing Shelter: Offering a Safe Haven in the Storms of Life

July 25, 2005

After spending ten years as a youth minister, Ed Irvin was burned out. He left ministry, entered the secular arena, and became a successful businessman. Many people only dream of the wealth and opportunity Ed encountered. However, he soon realized not even a large salary can buy happiness. "The Lord blessed my business," said Ed of his career. "But I was miserable inside."

This void between having everything and having nothing pushed Ed back into ministry. This time around, working in the area of counseling, Ed is finding spiritual wealth and prosperity in helping others.

Today, helping men, women, couples, and families of all ages has become Ed's passion. This became evident when he started New Haven Counseling Center in Sioux Falls eleven years ago. More than just a center that offers counseling services, New Haven operates with clinical experience, Biblical wisdom, and human compassion. Then, when a beautiful 15-acre facility south of Sioux Falls, formerly known as the Manna Retreat Center, was donated to New Haven, the center�s philosophy of offering "a safe haven in the storms of life" amplified.

"There's just something about being in a tranquil setting with a beautiful lake that allows people to leave the craziness of life behind," said Ed. "Our approach is graceful and safe. We meet everyone as they are and seek to offer the hope and freedom that only Christ can give."

Equipped with a staff of six fully trained and experienced
professionals, New Haven offers a wide array of services including marital, addiction, family, crisis-pregnancy, and eating disorder counseling as well as divorce recovery and stress management.

In addition, New Haven operates Planning Life, a center for pregnancy care, located near Roosevelt High School. The center offers free pregnancy tests, ultrasounds, and information for pregnant young women in a time of need. Since operating Planning Life, Ed has discovered a real need to minister to pregnant teens, especially those who have a family member in ministry. One of New Haven's greatest requests is to provide a place to stay, pray, and seek God's direction. Now praying for an outlet to help these young girls, Ed also hopes to open a Planning Life center near each high school.

The spiritual element on which New Haven operates is essential to its mission. Not only does the philosophy of living life with God enter into each counseling session and event put on by New Haven, it also radiates through the staff. In addition to vacation and holidays, Ed offers each staff member one day a month to spend time alone with the Lord.

Although a difficult thing to do, Ed has relied solely on faith that the Lord will provide. And He has. New Haven is able to offer their services and facilities to individuals, couples, and families in need at no cost. In fact, since deciding not to charge fees, income has increased. God has also provided for the staff of New Haven. Responsible for raising their own support, each member manages to see a full schedule of clients referred to them by local physicians and ministers.

Blessed by the experiences he has had in seminary, ministry, and the secular world, by his wife, family, and staff, and by receiving daily encouragement from the Lord, Ed gives thanks. Humbled, he realizes that "only in heaven will I be able to know the full impact of my ministry."

However, during the past eleven years, over 200 clients have accepted Christ, and many abortion-bound women have chosen to carry their babies to term. By living out his passion through New Haven, Ed Irvin is making an Impact.

Is God calling you to become a Christian counselor? Know of anyone who could use a safe haven from the storms of life? If so, Ed Irvin would love to visit with you. Please call 605.743.2228 or log on to