Our Leadership


The Bible shows us that Jesus Christ alone is the head of the church. He exercises His rule by His Word and Spirit. Jesus has appointed leaders to represent His rule in the church through a plurality of elders and deacons. Elders oversee the teaching and spiritual life of the church, while deacons serve the church by showing mercy and charity to those in need. We believe that churches should be members of churches. We are accountable to a group of churches known as the United Reformed Churches of North America.

  • Pastor Dan Ragusa -  pastorragusa@merfnyc.org


    Daniel was raised in a Christian home in Long Island, NY. He grew up attending a Pentecostal church, but when he was a senior in high school became convinced of Reformed teaching and became a member at West Sayville Reformed Bible Church (URCNA). He graduated with his M.Div. in 2016 from Mid-America Reformed Seminary. He then began his Ph.D. studies at Westminster Theological Seminary. He served as Stated Supply at Pompton Plains Reformed Bible Church (URCNA) for two years before accepting a call to pastoral ministry at Messiah’s Reformed Fellowship. 

  • Pastor Paul T. Murphy - ptmurphy@merfnyc.org


    A native New Yorker, Paul was raised in an Irish-Catholic neighborhood in the Bronx. At the age of 29 he was confronted with the claims of Jesus Christ. Thinking them foolishness, he sought to refute Christianity with the teaching of secular philosophy. The Lord broke down the barriers of his heart and captivated his life. Like the apostle Paul, this Paul can say “to live is Christ.” Prior to spearheading the founding of Messiah’s Reformed Fellowship in 2003, Rev. Murphy pastored Dutton United Reformed Church in Dutton, Michigan, for 13 years. He lives in New Rochelle, NY with his wife Julie. 

  • Elder Cesar Santana - cesar@merfnyc.org


    A native of New Yorker, Cesar was born and raised in the South Bronx. Cesar came to know Jesus in his early 20s. He now lives in Westchester with his wife and two kids.

  • Deacon Willie Avery -  willie@merfnyc.org


    Willie is a native New Yorker, born and raised in the Bronx, and attended Pentecostal church for the majority of his childhood. In his early 20s, he became convinced of Reformed theology. He is honored to serve alongside his brothers and sister in Christ. Willie now lives in Jersey City with his wife. 

  • Deacon Fredy Pinto -  fredy@merfnyc.org


    Born in the country of Colombia, Fredy was raised in the Roman Catholic faith by his parents. During his early 20s, he came to embrace faith in Jesus Christ as his savior and became a member of a Pentecostal congregation. After moving to New York in 2013, he understood Reformed teaching as the way to “glorify God and enjoy him forever” and now feels blessed to be part of the MeRF family. He lives in Astoria with his wife and son.