Graduation and Mission in a COVID Infected World

Greetings Family and Friends,

I Graduated!
After five to six long years, I was privileged to walk at Liberty University’s commencement ceremony in May. I graduated with high honors and earned my M.Div. in Biblical and Systematic Theology. The past five to six years have been tough! On top of managing the rapidly growing ministry of Saving Grace World Missions, working as Calvary Chapel Saving Grace’s Youth Pastor, being a husband and a father, I completed my associate’s, bachelor’s, and master’s degrees. Free time was not a part of my life over the past five to six years.

My wife Erin and I saved up for years to travel out to Virginia for my graduation. It also doubled as our fifteenth anniversary. We had a fantastic time visiting with family in Prince George, touring Washington DC, visiting Virginia Beach, and attending my graduation in Lynchburg. One of the highlights was my wife planned a surprise and my best friend, Chris Bohon, flew from Tenessee to Virginia to attend my graduation. It was honestly one of the best gifts I have ever received.

COVID and Missions
Over the past year, there probably hasn’t been a missionary update from any of our missionaries that doesn’t mention the effects of COVID. This past year, I had to cancel a trip to Uganda, missionaries have been stuck in the States or in lockdown in various countries, and so much more. I also had a team of about 30 youth and young adults scheduled to do an apologetic tour through Israel in June. But due to COVID restrictions and the recent conflicts, we had to cancel the trip.

So much has changed and we are all adjusting to the ups and downs these chaotic times are causing. Nonetheless, my conviction is to keep moving forward. I will not let COVID or any other issues stop any forward momentum in SGWM and CCSG. We will plan, we will strategies, and if necessary, we will hit walls head-on. But we will hit the walls running at full speed. The Great Commission hasn’t stopped and we are still taking ground for the gospel both locally and abroad. So, I had to cancel Israel, but I instantly started planning next Summer’s trip to Belize and have moved forward with plans to do another youth and young adults apologetic tour of Israel in 2023.

A short term team I lead to Mexico in March

Missionary Care
One of our primary goals at SGWM is missionary care. We desire to come alongside all of our missionaries and provide whatever support is needed, whether encouragement, administrative, pastoral, practical, or spiritual. We are here to love and care for our missionaries. Over the past fifteen years of serving in this kind of ministry, I realized that the task of missionary care takes an army of people. The Missions Pastor cannot do this alone. Actually, alone, the Missions Pastor will fail. This is why over the past fifteen years, I have sought to multiply my efforts to provide missionary care. I am so very privileged to serve alongside a plethora of mission-minded and Spirit-filled men and women who have joined arms with me in this monumental task of missionary care. It is truly amazing and I am grateful.

Calvary School of Missions and the SGWM Internship
The office is all steam ahead as we prepare for and put the finishing touches on this Summer’s Calvary School of Missions (CSOM) in Mexico. We currently have around ten students that will be joining our six-week missionary training school. We also have a stacked lineup of active and seasoned missionaries who will be teaching every day. This year, we are also adding a short-term trip to southern Mexico.

After the first CSOM, we launched a one to two year long intensive internship at the SGWM and CCSG home office. We currently have twelve interns who graduated from one of our CSOM schools, serving and receiving deeper and real-life church planting and missionary training. Our goal is to launch these fantastic individuals out to the mission field.

SGWM Interns – Note – we added one intern (Rachael) since this picture was taken.

My Family
My wife and kids are rejoicing that Summer is finally here. Homeschooling three kids is a labor of love. I am always blown away at my wife’s ability to manage the kids schooling, be a faithful homemaker, run a photography business, lead an American Heritage Girls Troop, and serving with me in youth ministry (I am also probably forgetting a bunch of other things that she does). I am also proud of my kids. They captivate my heart every day. This year, Malachi graduated from jr. high and will be going into high school, Kyla graduated from elementary and will be going into jr. high, and Alaina will be going into third grade.

One prayer/financial request we have is for summer camp. Originally, Malachi was going to be in Israel with Erin and me and we planned on sending Kyla to a 7-day long Hume Lake Summer camp with a friend’s church. Now that we are not going to Israel, we are trying to get Malachi to this camp. But there is a $700 price tag attached. If you feel let to give, please click on the “ways to give” link below.

Thank you for taking the time to read this long update. There are so many more things I could write. God is moving in profound ways all over the world. Thank you for your faithful prayers and financial support. By way of reminder, Erin and I do serve as Stateside missionaries and our monthly income does come from financial supporters who value the ministry our family does. If you would like to join our team, please click on the “ways to give” button below.