Biography

The Rev Dr. Ricardo “Ricky” Orellana was born in the small town of Los Andes in the fifth region of the central part of Chile. His parents and grandparents were both farmers and he is the first from his family to leave the farm, enter university and become a professional.

Originally from a Roman Catholic family, Ricardo accepted the Lord as his personal Savior when he was 14 years old and became a member of the National Presbyterian Church of Chile. Ricardo studied mechanical engineering at Valparaiso Catholic University earning a bachelor’s degree whilst also studying theology in the extension program of Juan Calvino Seminary which later became the Evangelical Institute of Chile. Ricardo later completed a BA of Ministry from EIC. Ricardo was ordained by the presbytery in 1985 while in the midst of his first church pastorate. He began teaching at the EIC a couple of years later. He applied and was accepted at Calvin Theology Seminary in Grand Rapids, MI to further his education and training earning a master’s degree in Missions and Church Growth. He returned to Chile to continue teaching at the seminary and pastor a local church. Ricardo returned to the United States when he was called to Good Shepherd Church, a Hispanic Christian Reformed Church (CRC), where he worked as a pastor, taught in a evangelist training program, and was involved with church planting. He received his Doctor in Ministry from Drew University in 1999.

Ricardo helps with the spiritual and pastoral care of the Spanish-speaking players and staff. His duties include translation and helping connect and integrate players, staff, and their families into the surrounding community.

Ricardo is currently ordained in the Christian Reformed Church, Classes Rocky Mountains. He is father to four beautiful children Pablo, Sarah, Felipe, and Ramon. He is also known as “Tio” by his three granddaughters. Ricardo enjoys reading, gardening, swimming, mountain hiking, preaching, singing and playing the guitar. He is recently remarried to Sonia, from Dominican Republic, a CRC elder and missionary.  He was called to be a pastor of a small, Spanish-speaking congregation, Bethel RCA, and is in partnership with World Impact for new church planting developing cell groups or house churches with unchurched people. Dr Orellana also serves as a Substitute Teacher in Passaic County, NJ and is working with CRC classes Hackensack, East Coast, to transfer his ordination as an Evangelist-Missionary in Passaic, NJ.

Ricardo began serving with Soccer Chaplains United in 2009.

Education

BS, Mechanical Engineer (VCU, 1980)

BA, Ministry (EIC, 1987)

MA, Missions & Church Growth (Calvin Theological Seminary, 1992)

DMin, Hispanic Leadership, (Drew University, 1999)

4 Units CPE

Board-certified Chaplain (CPSP)

License candidate Drug and Alcohol Counselor, Passaic Community College, NJ

Personal Contact Information

ricardo@soccerchaplainsunited.org