The Word of Life Experience: Fall 2023

From Fear to Faith Interview with Greg Fowler

Disciples of All Nations Cross Cultural Internship

Issue 19

Cover Image: Lorelei Smith, '22 & '23 Word of Life Bible Institute Alum; Missions Reality Trip to Portugal 2023


02 04

A Note from Don Lough, Jr. From Fear to Faith: Greg Fowler on the Power of Consistent Ministry

10 14 18 24 27 28

Alumni Updates Alumni Weddings

Disciples of All Nations: How Cross Cultural Interns Are Advancing the Great Commission Global Report Dedications One for One Campaign

A Note from Don Lough, Jr. In Philippians 1:3–5, Paul writes, “I thank my God in all my remembrance of you… because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now.” I am so thankful for each of you and your faithfulness to the ministry of Word of Life. Because of friends like you, we are seeing lives forever changed by the good news of Jesus Christ. In this issue of The Word of Life Experience, you’ll read stories of believers who are being used by God to advance the gospel, both in the United States and around the world. I hope these stories of ministry happening near and far give you renewed encouragement to serve Christ no matter where you are.


Director of Word of Life Foundation – John Nelson Director of Marketing – John Yarosh Editor in Chief & Copywriter – Hope (Trimble ‘20) Cate Designer – Teresa Stursberg ‘14 Advancement – Kay Gross Alumni Engagement Manager – Rebecca Berga ‘15 & ‘16 Alumni Relations – Ken Hayden ‘86 International Marketing Coordinator – Joshua Paulhamus ‘14 & ‘15 Social Media Manager – Noah Haneman ‘18 The Word of Life Experience is a publication of Word of Life. We want to build a community where you can find longtime friends, share testimonies of what God has been doing, encourage others with stories of change, and learn how you, too, can be involved with the mission of Word of Life. ©Copyright 2023 — Word of Life Fellowship. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means without written permission. The perspectives of the author(s) in this magazine do not necessarily represent the perspectives of Word of Life Bible Institute and/or Word of Life Fellowship.

Join us on our Florida campus for a memorable weekend featuring encouraging fellowship with Bible Institute alumni, a 25th year celebration for the class of '99, and fun activities for all ages. This exciting event is open to Bible Institute graduates, students, families, and friends.

In His Service,

Watch for more information on social media.

Don Lough, Jr. ’84 Chancellor, Bible Institute President and CEO, Word of Life Fellowship, Inc.





The Word of Life Experience

The concept behind the Faith Community Church dodgeball ministry is simple: Local middle school and high school students are invited to the church to play dodgeball every Friday evening, and the gospel is presented during halftime.

Greg Fowler '15 & '16

Mr. Z

“I love serving in youth ministry. Being able to shepherd that flock – to disciple them, give them a foundation in the Word of God, and help them know who Jesus is and how much He loves them – I can’t ask for anything better than that!” These are the words of Greg Fowler, the youth director at Faith Community Church in Dover, Delaware. He and his wife, Brittany, live in the same area where Greg grew up. They serve in the same church where Greg first heard the message of hope found in Jesus. As I talk to Greg over a video call, it is immediately evident that he has a huge heart for his hometown – and that his deep compassion for local students stems from his own experience as a teenager. “I had heard about God, but I didn’t know who God was or what He did for me,” Greg explains. He grew up without any background of faith, and his early years were marked by fear and uncertainty. “I feared death and just about everything else in life. I knew that, if there was a God, I definitely wasn’t good enough to get to heaven. I was overcome by fear and anxiety from a very young age.” Greg shares that he was first invited to play dodgeball at Faith Community Church when he was twelve years old. “At that time, there were about 70 to 100 kids who grew up playing dodgeball every week, and almost all of them came from the local schools.”

students are invited to the church to play dodgeball every Friday evening, and the gospel is presented during halftime. Over the years, this consistent ministry has given Dover youths the opportunity to break away from the hurts and hardships of daily life through the avenue of sports. But for Greg and countless others, it was the example and fatherly care of the dodgeball ministry leader that made a lasting impact on their lives. “His name is Mr. Z,” Greg shares. “We used to call him ‘Gandalf the White’ because of his white beard and hair. He is the definition of what a life lived for Christ looks like. Christ is identified as perfectly balancing grace and truth. That’s what I saw in this man, and it’s something I had not yet been exposed to in my life. We trusted him, and we heard what he preached.”

From Fear to Faith: Greg Fowler on the Power of Consistent Ministry By Hope (Trimble '20) Cate

The concept behind the Faith Community Church dodgeball ministry is simple: Local middle school and high school

Faith Community Church where dodgeball evenings are held



The Word of Life Experience

the impact is not always apparent in the short term.

from dodgeball to the church for a Bible study on Thursday nights. He brought pizza, and we went through the Word together.” Greg explains that Mr. Z stayed consistent in this ministry, even when the results were not immediately evident. “There were only five of us who showed up on a weekly basis. Some weeks there was no one. And yet, he continued running it for many, many years.” Mr. Z’s faithful discipleship gave Greg the valuable opportunity to ask questions and learn how to navigate the Christian life.

‘Why I would want to do anything else but serve the Lord?’”

After coming to the dodgeball ministry for three years, Greg was invited to attend Word of Life Island through a camp scholarship. “People in the church sponsored ten kids from the dodgeball ministry to come to camp. We had no idea camp was expensive – they just sponsored ten of us to go.” Fifteen-year-old Greg thought a Bible camp sounded boring, but a friend convinced him to give it a try.

“The fruit can be slow sometimes. For me, it took three years of hearing the gospel every week. And yet, Mr. Z consistently poured into me. The Lord works on His time.” As we wrap up our conversation, I reflect on how God can use one willing person to plant countless seeds for the gospel. I think of Mr. Z’s faithful ministry and how his legacy is continuing through Greg and others – and I praise God that He can use something as simple as dodgeball to reap an eternal harvest. “With the dodgeball ministry, it takes a lot of patience,” Greg reflects as we close. “Kids come in, and we have no idea what the results may be. We may never see the results of the seeds planted, but it is a joy when we do. It’s more than I can ask for when I get to see the Lord transform lives. In the meantime, we continue the work.”

After completing the Bible Institute pro- gram, Greg returned to his hometown and became actively involved at Faith Community Church. “The pastors here poured into me for many years, giving me opportunities to learn in ministry, to preach, and to disciple.” Three years ago, Greg had the opportunity to take on the youth director position at his church. He is currently serving in this role while completing seminary training.

Students playing at a dodgeball evening

During the Monday evening rally at The Island, the gospel presentation

resonated with Greg in a new way. “It finally clicked,” he explains. “Up until that point, I had heard about Jesus, but I hadn’t believed.” That night, after hearing the gospel faithfully preached for three years, Greg understood the reality of Jesus’s sacrifice for his sins. “What really stood out to me was the truth that Jesus is not just a

Most recently, Greg has had the opportunity to help run the dodgeball ministry that had such a profound impact in his own life as a teen. “I work with three other guys who grew up in the dodgeball ministry. They’re brothers of mine, and we’ve learned and

“The fruit can be slow sometimes. For me, it took three years of hearing the gospel every week. And yet, Mr. Z consistently poured into me. The Lord works on His time.”

Mr. Z and Greg at a dodgeball evening

Greg went to Word of Life Bible Institute after graduating high school. “The first year at the Bible Institute, the Lord humbled my heart and showed me I was living for myself and not for God.” Greg dedicated His life to the Lord and entered his sophomore year with a desire to serve Him through full-time ministry. “I had my own reservations,” he shares. “In my mind, people who sought out ministry for a living were really smart and had known [the Bible] their whole lives. I didn’t go to church growing up, and even the Bible stories were all new to me at a young age.” Through the service opportunities at the Bible Institute, however, Greg grew to understand that the strength to effectively serve in ministry would come from God and not from him. “I dwelled a lot on the truth that in my weakness, the Lord is strong. When I was counseling teens on The Island, I realized I was very weak. And yet, the Lord was using me despite myself. I found a joy in that, and I wondered,

grown together.” He explains that the ministry was temporarily put on pause due to COVID-19. After the pandemic, Greg and these other men stepped in to restart the ministry. Greg describes this as an incredible, humbling opportunity. “It’s a simple ministry, but so effective.” Now that the dodgeball outreach is meeting consistently again, Greg is praying for opportunities to follow up with these teens throughout the week as Mr. Z did faithfully for so many years. He is especially excited to share that this is the first year they’ve been able to bring a group of students to The Island since the pandemic. “We hope and pray that the Lord will continue to build these avenues for us to further the discipleship beyond Friday nights.” Since he began leading the dodgeball ministry, Greg has had the opportunity to invest in teens who come from places of deep brokenness and pain. As he shares, I can hear his passion for pointing these students to the power of the gospel. He explains how this kind of outreach requires perseverance, as

person, and it’s not just a story. Jesus is God, and His death on the cross was because of His love for me.” Through the consistent ministry of Mr. Z and others, God had been preparing Greg to accept the good news of Jesus and to leave his fears at the cross. That night, at The Island, Greg’s heart was opened to this truth. “My whole life, I had been looking for some kind of peace. I was looking for joy because I couldn’t find happiness in the things of this world.” His face beams as he exclaims, “I made the decision to trust Jesus as my Savior that day.” Greg came home from The Island excited about his relationship with Jesus, but he quickly realized he was returning to habits and peers that were hostile to his faith. “When I came home, I was still in the world. I was among groups who were deep in sin. I needed to seek out discipleship.” Greg reflects on Mr. Z’s impact as a steady source of spiritual mentoring during this time. “He invited the guys

Teens competing in a game of dodgeball

Scan the QR to watch a video of Greg’s story.



The Word of Life Experience



Intersect Camp Miamisburg, Ohio Cold Springs, California

Pursuit Camp Hudson, Florida

Snowcamp Pottersville, New York

In one incredible weekend, students ages 12–18 can experience exciting activities, meaningful friendships, and biblical teaching as they are challenged to pursue a deeper relationship with Jesus. This year, we are excited to open a brand-new satellite location in Cold Springs, California! Book your student’s winter getaway today!



The Word of Life Experience

Danielle Mattson ‘89 lives in Tennessee and has five adult children: Sarah, Michael, Hannah, Sophia, and Angela. She also has five grandchildren. She is a certified nurse assistant for a private caregiving hospice, and she is also an assistant to an attorney. Ovidiu Toderic ‘89 and his wife, Lilly, live in New Jersey and have a son, Daniel (11). Ovi is a supervisory special agent for the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Michael Hernandez ‘95 and his wife, Lorie, live in Florida, and they have two adult children: Joel and Celina. Michael enjoys boating and works as an airline pilot. Claudia Ormrod ‘97 is a graduate of Word of Life Bible Institute in Recife, Brazil. She and her husband, Mike, live in England, and they have two daughters: Michaela (16) and Amanda (14). Claudia is a teacher and is working towards becoming an educational psychologist. At church, she is a youth leader, Sunday school teacher, and a worship team singer. Chad ‘98 and Leah (Hergatt ‘98) Clem live in the Capital Region of New York State, where Chad is the discipleship pastor at Starpoint Church. Pastor Chad is originally from Alabama. After graduating high school in central Florida, he attended Word of Life Bible Institute in Schroon Lake, New York. He then attended Liberty University and earned a bachelor’s degree in pastoral studies. He’s also a certified mental health coach. He has served the Capital Region as a pastor for 20 years. He and his wife, Leah, have been married since 2000 and have three amazing children. Chad enjoys all things gardening and Alabama football. Veronica (Gakuru ‘98 & ‘99) Marquis and her husband, Andrew, live in the Boston area, and they have two children: Sierra (10) and Eli (8). Veronica is a women’s health nurse practitioner. 2000’s Christi (Fredericks ‘00 & ‘01) Mack and her husband, Justin, recently moved from New York to Wyoming. They have four children: Jock (16), Adelaide (14), Gwen (12), and Hazel (2). Christi is the manager, personal trainer, and group fitness instructor at a local gym, Studio Thrive. She also is the owner of a virtual fitness class called Training with Christi. At church, she is a drummer in the worship band and a nursery worker. Randi (Vander Wiele ‘01) Stump and her husband, Graham, live in Schroon Lake, New York. They are the parents of four children: Wyatt (16), Keith (14), Fallon (11), and Craig (9). Randi is a stay-at-home homeschooling mom. Her family enjoys snowboarding and playing hockey in the winter. They volunteer at Word of Life in

the summer, helping run and organize the weekly Rodeo at The Ranch.

Timothy Lyttle ‘03 and his wife, Stephanie, live in the Southern Tier region of New York State. They have three children: Aiden (10), Zachariah (9), and Elijah (5). Tim works in mental health at the Greater Binghamton Health Center. He is involved in the men’s ministry at church. Michael Skaer ‘03 is married to Renee, and they live in Pennsylvania. Mike is a high school Bible and ESL teacher at Delaware County Christian School. Christie (Smith ‘05 & ‘07) Robbins and her husband, Nathan, are church planters in the city of Buffalo, New York. They homeschool their three children: Amelia (9), Margaret (6), and Haddon (4) and love to be involved in community activities. Rachel (Ruppert ‘06) Payne and her husband, Daniel, live in Tennessee. They have two children: Sarah (in heaven) and Maxwell (2). Rachel is a stay-at-home mom, and Daniel works for an outsourcing company. They recently bought their first home. Steve ‘08 and Sandy ‘09 Gerhart live in Florida, and they have four children and ten grandchildren. Steve is the pastor at First Baptist Hudson. Heather Elliott ‘09 lives in the Southern Tier Region of New York State. She works as an administrative assistant/office manager for a financial advisor. She is a published author of clean fantasy novels with a biblical worldview. Jessica (Craige ‘09 & ‘10) Sheridan is married to a fellow alumnus, Greg ‘08 & ‘10 , and they have two children: Aurora (10) and Joshua (8). They live in Pennsylvania, where Jessica is a stay-at-home mom, a worship leader at church, and a substitute teacher at a local Christian school. 2010’s Edward Huezo ‘11 is married to Ashley, and they live in Alberta, Canada. Edward is an associate pastor at Pathway Church – Cambrian.

“I have great memories of learning the Word of God from so many great profes-

sors, lecturers, and pastors. I made lifelong friendships that have lasted to this day. The year I attended Word of Life was the most foundational year of my life. The biblical princi- ples I learned at Word of Life Bible Institute have set in motion years of growing in the knowledge of, and love for, our Lord.” – Ovi Toderic ‘89 1990’s Paul Rickert ‘91 & ‘92 and his wife, Michelle, live in Maryland, and they have three children: Jacob (21), Sophia (20), and Chloe (17). Paul went on to Tennessee Temple University and Liberty University, and, in 1996, he went to the Police Academy. While a police officer, he attended grad school while Michelle was in law school. After Michelle finished her J.D., they returned to Liberty University, where Paul became assistant professor of criminal justice. In 2011, they moved to Shreveport, where Paul taught at LeTourneau and was assistant dean for graduate and professional studies. He completed his Ed.D. at Liberty in 2012 and then was dean for adult and graduate studies at Bryan College for a year. They moved to Maryland in 2016 to be closer to family after Michelle was in a car accident and sustained a traumatic brain injury. Paul now works for the University of Maryland-College Park in their College of Agriculture and Natural Resources as an area extension director. Dana (Brannen ‘94) Beetem and her husband, Don, live in Illinois. They have three children still living at home: Ricky (13), Caleb (12), and Elijah (12). Dana teaches fourth and fifth grade at Faith Bible Christian Academy. At church, where her husband is the lead pastor, she is a teacher for Awana.

Alumni Updates All the latest news from our Bible Institute graduates! 1970’s

Graham and Randi (Vander Wiele '01) Stump

also Word of Life Bible Institute grads: Paul, Sean, Katy, Carl ‘13, and Levi ‘17. Sylinda is a homemaker. Allen ‘79 and Darleen (Sawyer ‘79) Bacon live in North Carolina and have six adult children: Christine, Carolyn, Benjamin, Daniel, Candace, and Jonathan. They also have eleven grandchildren. Allen graduated from Liberty University in 2021 with a master’s degree in counseling and has started a counseling business called Great Expectations Counseling. 1980’s Cheryle (Riley ‘83) Hiking and her husband, Scott, live in Connecticut. Cheryle is a paraeducator for a transition academy.

She is involved at church teaching Sunday school, serving as part of the hospitality group, cleaning and scheduling cleaners, and helping with VBS. Suzette (Ramsey ‘86) Miller and her husband, Keith, have three adult children: Jonathan, Drake, and Aubri. Suzette is a special education teacher of students with severe and profound disabilities.

Craig Andes ‘73 recently completed his Ph.D. in organizational leadership from John Wesley School of Leadership at Carolina University. Craig and his wife, Sallyann, live in North Carolina. Bill ‘78 and Glenna (Storozow ‘78) Hall live in the Southern Tier region of New York State. They have three adult children: Will, Philip, and Megan. They also have two grandchildren. Sylinda (Birchard ‘78) Alfred and her husband, Martin, live in Pennsylvania, where they recently moved into a new log home in the “middle of the woods.” They have five adult children, two of whom are

“In 2021, God spared my life because of much prayer on my behalf. I was hospitalized

with COVID and resulting complica- tions. I was on a vent for 12 days, and the chances THEY gave me were very slim – BUT GOD!!!” – Suzette Miller ‘86

Ben ‘12 & ‘17 and Megan (Guiggey ‘12) Powell are missionaries with Word of Life in


11 The Word of Life Experience

What Is Your Favorite WOLBI Memory? “I loved my introduction and training in intentional ministry and discipleship. I spent my summers at The Ranch and fell in love with using the discipleship skills I was learning, so much so that I came back for three additional summers!” – Christie Robbins ‘05 & ‘07 “Vincent and I started dating in our first year at the Bible Institute. He asked me to be his girlfriend on the old bookstore porch (after meeting on The Island in 2013 [while I was] working STC Snack Shack and Vincent was a lifeguard), and here we are now, eight years of marriage and two beautiful girls!” – Sarah Berardelli ‘14 “I was always in the kitchen peeling potatoes with my friend, Lori Slyman, every Monday. We had a lot of fun together. I loved all our instructors, especially Joe Stowell.” – Cheryle Hicking ‘83 “One of my favorite memories was having a half day of class and getting to go down the tube hills with my friends and classmates in preparation for Snowcamp.” – Carl Alfred ‘13 “Being a part of the Unseen and Revive bands are experiences I will never forget. There were so many cool opportunities we had. I learned so much – from the good times and mistakes that I made – to lead me to where I am today. I attribute a lot to Word of Life Bible Institute and reference it often even as I preach. The professors, staff, students, and friends that I made are memories I hold dear.” – Micah Kitchen ‘15 & ‘16 “My second-year ministry team was the absolute best – to this day, we are still family to each other. I've never had a

Ontario, Canada. Ben is the camp director in Owen Sound and serves on the tech team at church. They have five children: Adelie (8), Gracie (6), Hudson (5), Sawyer (3), and Milena (3 months). Chloe (Hossann ‘12) Craiger is married to a fellow alumnus, Tyler ‘12 & ‘13 . They live in Pennsylvania, and they have three children: Lola (5), Barbara (2) and Lydia (9 months). Carl Alfred ‘13 lives in Pennsylvania, where he works as a shift supervisor at Sheetz. At church, he works with the A/V team and helps run Sunday school on the Sundays when he is not in the sound booth. Sharon (Einwechter ‘14) Shope and her husband, Jack, live in Pennsylvania. They both work for the State of Pennsylvania and enjoy having all the same days off!

pastor at Calvary Church in Muscatine. They recently bought their first home.

Dana (Brannen '94) Beetem (far left)

“I loved the Philippians class, but above all, that’s the place where God

Vincent '14 & '15 and Sarah (Davis '14) Berardelli (center)

confirmed His calling for my life of reaching people with the gospel in the context of the local church!” – Johnny Armijo ‘16 & ‘17 Samuel ‘16 & ‘17 and Lindsey (Eaton ‘17) Fanus live in Pennsylvania, where Lindsey is working as a registered nurse and Sam is pursuing an education degree. Hannah (Bates ‘17) Davis is married to a fellow alumnus, Josh Davis ‘17 . They are living in Maryland, where Hannah works full time as a barista at a local Christian-owned coffee shop. She enjoys gardening, reading, dirt biking, and hiking. Rebekah (Sisson ‘17) Wilkes and her husband, Tyler, live in Pennsylvania, where Rebekah works at Weis Markets. They recently became parents to a daughter, Morgan. Caleb ‘19 & ‘20 and Jessica (DelGrosso ‘19 & ‘20) Auli live in Georgia. They are new parents to a daughter, Melody Mae, born in July. Caleb is a shift lead at Chick-fil-A, and Jessica is a homemaker. They both work with the youth at their church. 2020’s Seth Clark ‘20 lives in Virginia, where he recently started working for a local HVAC company. He attends Heritage Baptist Church in Lynchburg, where he is a tech volunteer. Kristen Ferris ‘21 lives in Pennsylvania, where she works as a cashier at Weis Markets. She is on the Missions Committee at church and volunteers at a local youth center.

Carl Alfred '13 (right)

Allen '79 and Darleen (Sawyer '79) Bacon (far left)

Ryder '14 and Amanda (Luckner '16) Lucas (right)

Christi (Fredericks '00 & '01) Mack (left)

“My favorite part of being at the Bible Institute was learning things about

Danielle Mattson '89 (right)

the Bible I hadn’t known before – context, facts, proof, and most of all, seeing our Lord God in a greater light. Seeing the power of the gospel

change my life, my peers, and campers was just amazing!” – Sharon Shope ‘14

Rachel (Ruppert '06) Payne (far left)

Johnny Armijo '16 & '17 (center)

Vincent ‘14 & ‘15 and Sarah (Davis ‘14) Berardelli live in North Carolina and have two daughters: Shiloh (3) and Eden (1). Vincent works with his father in the family business as a home inspector, and Sarah is a stay-at-home mom. They both work with the youth at church, and Vincent is a deacon and Sunday school teacher. Ryder ‘14 and Amanda (Luckner ‘16) Lucas live in Indiana, where Ryder serves as the worship leader at Graceland Church Palmyra and Amanda is the campus administrator. They are both involved in the worship team and tech team. Micah ‘15 & ‘16 and Alyssa (Johnson ‘16) Kitchen live in Alabama, and they have three children: Zac (8), Madi (6), and Eliza (2). Micah serves as the associate/student pastor at Seddon Baptist Church and is still playing that bass.

Micah '15 & '16 and Alyssa (Johnson '16) Kitchen (right)

Caleb '19 & '20 and Jessica (DelGrosso '19 & '20) Auli (far left)

Chad Clem '98 (center)

closeness like we did.” – Jessica Auli ‘19 & ‘20

Rebekah (Sisson '17) Wilkes (center)

“My summer ministry was a huge turning point in my life. I finally found my feet during the summer serving at the stables as a wrangler and giving lessons to the campers.” – Randi Stump ‘01

Paul Rickert '91 & '92 (right)

Johnny Armijo ‘16 & ‘17 and his wife, Ashley, live in Iowa. Johnny is the evangelism


13 The Word of Life Experience

Photos from our 2023 Summer Alumni Ice Cream Social

Check out all the ways to connect with your alumni family! Our social media platforms allow you to stay up to date on key events, announcements, and more.

Alumni Weddings

2023 February 18 Galen ‘17 and Elizabeth Esper June 23 Kevin and Morgan (Stiles ‘21) Morgan

July 8 Eian '21 and Cameron "Cammy" (Law '21 & '22) Gardner July 15 Addison and Samantha “Sammi” (Jefson ‘19) Webner Garreck and Skyla (Pehl '21) Durato Andre '20 and Anna (Powell '19 & '20) Rodrigues July 21 Ethan '22 and Laura (Schock '21 & '22) Hansen



July 23 Andrew '18 and Madi Beckley July 30 Henrique '19 and Allison Lima August 5 Kalan and Olivia (Wildes ‘18) Plew Luke ‘19 and Kaitlyn Schmidt August 11 Thadeus ‘23 and Bella Dick August 26 Calvin '91 & '92 and Sandy Ballou September 2 Chad and Amy (Ketchum '04) Harrelson Joshua '23 and Cadence (Gates '23) Lawson September 4 Ethan '23 and Hailee (Emmert '23) Fariss September 6 Josh and Alana (Jewers '20) Yoder September 9 Anthony “AJ” ‘12 and Alivia Sims Nicholas and Elysia (Hinkel ‘15) Richert September 16 Michael and Melissa (Schneider ‘12) Head September 17 Jared and Kaylee (Parke '21) Wallace Chris and Michelle (Brooks ‘90 & ‘91) Coats September 19 Daniel ‘86 and Wendi Knight September 23 Jordan and Novalie (Norton '21 & '22) Miller

The alumni Facebook group is the perfect place to communicate with your fellow alumni and learn how God is working in their lives. With our simple form, you can let us know about anything from an address change or family update to your favorite memories from the Bible Institute.

Ethan '22 and Laura (Schock '21 & '22) Hansen


15 The Word of Life Experience

Reaching the World with the Hope of Jesus Apply for an international mission trip with Word of Life today!

PhilanthroCorp Leave a Lasting Legacy

Did you know Word of Life partners with PhilanthroCorp to offer confi- dential estate planning services? PhilanthroCorp walks you through the process so you can leave a lasting legacy that accurately reflects your wishes.

Healthcare Teams Doctors, nurses, or anyone with a heart for ministry can be part of sharing the gospel worldwide through our short-term healthcare trips.

“The PhilanthroCorp will and estate planning services were so useful in helping us progress with getting our documents in order… Our planning documents include our wishes, which will help our loved ones. We are grateful that our planning will remember charities we believe in and support, as well.”

Work Trip Families and church groups are invited to come and be part of our short-term construction and landscaping projects across the globe.

– Ronald L. and Beverly J. Schubert

To find out more, scan the QR code or contact John Nelson, the director of Word of Life Foundation.

Launch Individuals and families can use their specific gifts to serve in a customized Launch experience. Trips range from several weeks to two years. Whether you have a passion for English teaching, evangelism, discipleship, or behind-the-scenes operations, Launch is for you!

Joshua ‘14 and Katrina Cook / 518.494.6217


17 The Word of Life Experience


Seika Ito '20 & '21

Seika capturing photos for an event

Disciples of All Nations: How Cross Cultural Interns Are Advancing the Great Commission

Seika (Portugal) As a student from Japan who attended the Bible Institute in New York and is completing CCI in Portugal, Seika Ito loves getting to expe- rience other cultures and people groups. When describing the events leading up to where she is now, Seika emphasizes how God gave her the desire to pursue CCI and opened doors for her to go. “I wanted to not just learn about ministry, but also experience it. I also wanted to learn how to do ministry in another country, because my first purpose for coming to the states was to see Christianity in a different country.” Because CCI gives students the opportunity to gain ministry experience and learn how to share the gospel in other cultures, this was the perfect fit for her. Seika is currently in her second year of CCI in Portugal. Her responsibilities look different every day, from helping at youth events to playing musical instruments for worship ministry and even capturing stories through photography and social media. “I’ve learned a lot about commu- nication and being intentional with people,” she shares. “I have no idea how I could do ministry without this type of experience.” She sees this learning process as vital to preparing for a life of service to the Lord. She is excited to take what she has learned through CCI back to Japan, where she will continue serving the Lord through local church ministry.

Matthew 28:19–20 records Jesus’s closing words to His disciples in what is one of the most well-known passages in all Scripture: “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations…” Word of Life brings its unique emphasis on youth evangelism into this calling, building bridges for the gospel into the hearts of children and youth around the world. There is one particularly unique and effective strategy Word of Life is using to advance the good news on a global scale. Through a program called the Cross Cultural Internship (CCI), Bible Institute graduates spend two years working with full-time missionaries on an international field while completing their degree online. The lives of those who have been part of the internship give overwhelming evidence that this short-term opportunity is a catalyst for long-term furtherance of the gospel worldwide.

Seika with a child in the Portugal youth ministry

Seika with her group in children's ministry

Portugal Street


19 The Word of Life Experience


At the end of the Great Commission, there is a wonderful promise for every follower of Jesus. “And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Through two years of service and growth in the CCI program, students discover the beauty of this truth through personal experience. They come away with a broadened perspective and skillset to bring with them as they launch into ministry on their own. Most of all, however, they learn how completely dependent they are on God to make an eternal impact. It is because of Him the hope of Jesus is being proclaimed to people across the globe – and by His grace, CCI will continue to be an avenue for the gospel for many years to come.

Josh teaching a Brazilian Bible lesson on the miracles of Jesus


Josh Kappen '19 & '20

Hannah Seaton '19 & '20

Josh (Brazil) While Josh’s story is a bit different than Seika’s, it is equally rooted in the theme of God’s provision. Josh Kappen spent two years in CCI serving with an outreach for kids in Brazil. He graduated from the program in January of this year and is currently living in Ohio, where he works with Child Evangelism Fellowship and the children’s programs at his church. While he was first encouraged to consider CCI during a high school mission trip, it wasn’t until Missions Conference while Josh was a Bible Institute sophomore that he was drawn specifically to the ministry in Brazil. “I went to the cafeteria and started talking with a few of the interns who had recently come back from Brazil. One of the interns shared that they needed guys in Brazil, because there were so many boys who needed a father figure or a brother figure to show them someone cares for them. Then, she asked me a question: ‘Why not go to Brazil and see where it takes you?’” Josh decided to become a CCI intern in Brazil shortly thereafter. In Brazil, Josh had unique opportunities to share the love of Jesus with children, even through stretching and chal- lenging situations. “I learned how to be a leader – how to step up and do ministry, but also how to listen to people.” Through his experiences, Josh learned valuable lessons that he continues to use in children’s ministry today. “The Lord helped me in Brazil to learn to rely on Him to give me patience, strength, and love for every kid I interact with.” God used CCI to fuel Josh’s passion for children’s ministry, and he is continuing to reach young people in his own community with the hope of Jesus Christ.

Hannah (Taiwan) How does CCI impact the ongoing ministry of full-time missionaries? Hannah Seaton has a unique vantage point to answer this question as a CCI graduate who began serving full time in Taiwan in January 2023. She went to the Bible Institute in South Korea with the intention of going into missions. For her, it was the opportunity to serve on the field while earning a bachelor’s degree (a requirement for entry into many closed countries) that led her to pursue CCI. In both CCI and her current ministry role, Hannah has served on Taiwan’s media team. She captures stories and builds bridges with the people of Taiwan through the YouTube channel, “Pilgrimage Films.” “We make videos for SYME, our English program, and we also make videos about Taiwanese culture.” Discipleship is also a significant part of her role. “When we have students here to learn English, we get to talk to them and pour into them. I have a student I disciple, and I’m also discipling one of our current CCI interns.” Hannah explains that having CCI interns on property is a great refreshment to her and the rest of the team. “When you have interns coming in, they bring new energy to the field. You get to see them re-experience all you experienced when you were first here. You get to introduce them to every- thing, to pour into the next missionaries.” The enthusiasm of incoming interns also helps the team on the ground increase the efficiency and effectiveness of their work. “They are here to serve for two years. That’s why they’ve come. They are a huge help and blessing in that way.” Each of these benefits helps missionaries like Hannah expand their reach as they impact their communities with the gospel.

More information on the Cross Cultural Internship is available at:

Hannah serving at a children's ministry event in Taiwan

Want to sponsor a child for a day at an international youth camp? See back cover for details!

Hannah working on a videography project in Taiwan


21 The Word of Life Experience


Does Your Student Have a Heart for Global Missions?

This summer, your teen can discover the joy of serving Christ at one of our camps in New York or Florida. Not only will they learn hands-on skills, but they will also experience biblical mentoring and friendships to last a lifetime. CAMP CREW OPPORTUNITIES • Lifeguarding • Culinary Services • Landscaping & Maintenance • Outdoor Education • Photography • Live Productions • And More! Bible Institute scholarships are available for high school juniors and seniors.

2024 Trips • Argentina • Honduras • Hungary • Navajo Nation • St. Maarten/Anguilla Bible Institute scholarships are available for high school juniors and seniors. Visit Student Fusion is an opportunity for students ages 14–22 to serve on the mission field, build incredible friendships, and share their faith in another culture. The program includes guidance through preparation and support raising and culminates in an unforgettable two-week mission trip.


to learn how your student can join the crew!

to learn more and apply today (the deadline is March 31, 2024).


23 The Word of Life Experience

Cardboard testimonies at Word of Life Island – how God worked in the camper's life that week

Ministry Near and Far

United States The Word of Life team in the United States is praising God for a fruitful season of summer camp in New York and Florida. Below is one of many testimonies from campers whose lives were forever changed: “I learned I don’t have to worry about my future, because God is in control. Even when we are stranded in this broken world, He is with us. I made a decision at the campfire to throw away the sin [and] the past and let God take control.”

Kenya Word of Life hosts day camps for children in impoverished areas. Most of the counselors grew up in the slums, and each has a story to tell. One such story is of a young man who was running from the police and slipped into a Bible Hour camp meeting to hide. Amazingly, this young man came to Christ through the message and is serving the Lord today!

Restricted Access Country Recently, several ministry directors had the opportunity to travel to a restricted access country and train youth leaders to use the Word of Life Youth Ministries curriculum in the Arabic language. The team is praising God for this opportunity.

Poland Word of Life missionaries recently held an evangelistic concert in the city of Płock. Two hundred people came and heard a clear gospel presentation. Additionally, 226 heard the gospel through individual conversations and seven made professions of faith in Christ.


25 The Word of Life Experience

Days of Life Change

This holiday season, you can receive digital access to Word of Life’s brand-new Christmas devotional, "25 Days of Life Change!" Celebrate the birth of the Savior with daily encouragement from God’s Word delivered straight to your inbox.

Thank You for Your Partnership! We are truly grateful for your prayers and support for the worldwide ministry of Word of Life. It is because of faithful friends like you we can continue to reach youth and families with the hope of Jesus Christ. If you would like to learn how you can continue to partner with Word of Life, please contact our advancement team at 518.494.6000 or .

In Memory of:

Rich Ahl Ken and Carol Strand

Gladys Geshay Elizabeth Dukquits Rosalie Dukquits John Murdock James and Doris Rooks

Clifford Pocock Bob and Sue Brown

Elijah Beaty Lela Coleman

Frankie Punzi Lorraine Ward

Terry Boblitt Bob and Sue Brown

Rick and Margret Hefner Larry and Linda Wollbrink

Ann Ross James and Carolyn Pennington Pleasant Valley Baptist Church

Edith Broecker Fred and Elaine Rowley

Ruth Royer Kempton Shannon Dukquits

Noah Beatty Carver Dave James of Oak Tree Community Church Nancy Coats Robin Brooks William and Rebecca Worley

Veronica Kruppenbacher Glen Sebast

Sharon Thomas Bob and Sue Brown

Art and Ruth Nazigian Ann Warder

Win and Nancy Whitten Bob and Sue Brown

Ruth Nazigian Bob and Sue Brown Steve and Jean Nazigian William Woltmann

James Dukquits Shannon Dukquits Rosalie Dukquits

In Honor of:

Paul and Tati O’Bradovic Ben and Pam Klump

Joy Paulsen’s 70th Birthday Deb Nightingale Gabriel Wong Tami Yost

Nick Rommevaux Victor Job

To opt in, visit:


27 The Word of Life Experience 27

One Day of Camp Can Change a Life for Eternity

How To Get Involved

• Visit • Select a One for One T-shirt, crewneck, or hoodie, and place your order online. • Your gift will cover the cost of your T-shirt and a day of camp for a child across the globe.

The One for One Campaign is an opportunity for you to reach a child across the globe with the gospel. By purchasing a One for One apparel item, you can sponsor a child for a day at an international Word of Life Camp, where they can encounter the hope of Jesus Christ.

Follow us on social media:



Page 1 Page 2-3 Page 4-5 Page 6-7 Page 8-9 Page 10-11 Page 12-13 Page 14-15 Page 16-17 Page 18-19 Page 20-21 Page 22-23 Page 24-25 Page 26-27 Page 28

Made with FlippingBook - Online Brochure Maker