2019 marks Paraclete Mission Group’s third decade in the making—and it never ceases to amaze us how God’s plan for the ministry comes together perfectly year after year. As 2019 comes to a close, we are reflecting on the most recent results of God’s perfect plans—our newest Paraclete Associates! Paraclete is honored to come alongside a record 14 new associates this year—the greatest growth in the ministry’s history! Below is a quick look at the latest additions to Paraclete family. We give thanks to God for these extraordinary servant leaders.
Many Paraclete associates receive a significant portion of their annual income as year-end gifts. Please consider a special December donation to prepare them for a strong 2020 start. Learn more or donate to your favorite associate here: https://www.paraclete.net/people/
Dale and Carmen Phillips both grew up in Latin America where they developed a love for missions. Both worked in the airline industry, and then served with Reach Global in Eastern Europe. They have four children, two still at home. Dale has a master’s degree in Organizational Leadership from Azusa Pacific University. As associates, Dale and Carmen will work in a ministry process called Deep Community experience.
Elizabeth Todd has 25 years of experience teaching, learning and volunteering to assist Christian training programs abroad. Most recently she has been working with Step International, a ministry of her church, inviting friends of Jesus to come alongside Muslims and Christians in the Middle East for friendship, practical help and an exchange of learning. Her living situation in the West Bank became unstable, and her previous organization made some changes that prompted a transition to Paraclete, where she will live in Oregon and work online, and travel to the Middle East in roles similar to her most recent work.
Ken and Ruth Van Kirk have had a long missionary career in Mexico working among the Tarahumara and Yaqui peoples as well as with Hispanics. They have been on one team their whole career, but the team has been a part of several missions due to mergers and name changes—with Pioneers International since 2012. Ken is a medical doctor, and he has worked in that capacity for the Mexican government in a Tarahumara village. Ken and Ruth have a vision to train Latin American professionals to be a part of missionary teams, and they have set up a program called Consiervo (Bond servant) that began in October.
Miguel and Becky Aguirre have been serving on the Pioneers International team with the Van Kirks. They have a vision for coming alongside to equip and support the Latin American sending movement through mobilization, training, coaching, pastoral care and resource development. They will join the Van Kirks in the Consiervo program as a part of that vision. Miguel is Venezuelan, and Becky grew up in Colombia as an MK, so they are well positioned to use their backgrounds to train and equip Latin Americans to be involved in the Great Commission and Kingdom work.
Vaughn and Maralee served for many years in Grand Rapids, Michigan, working for various Christian organizations, including Zondervan Corp., Radio Bible Class (Our Daily Bread Ministries), Honey Creek Christian Homes, and Wedgwood Christian Services. Vaughn has over 20 years experience working with youth, having served in Christian residential treatment agencies and as a youth pastor. Maralee’s focus has been administrative, particularly in the area of music production coordination. In 2006, God brought them back to Wisconsin to serve in a pastor/missionary care ministry. For 12 years they managed Shalom House, a ministry retreat in New London, Wisconsin. Very quickly, God opened the door for the Groens to serve as Hospitality Directors at EdenRidge, a ministry retreat in Crab Orchard, TN. They’re excited to be part of this growing, thriving, and effective ministry of excellence.
Trained a journalist, shaped by her “third culture kid” upbringing, and honed during 14 years of serving in Indonesia, Rebecca enjoys moving into another culture or entering, with questions and a desire to listen, into a challenging conversation about a needed topic. Rebecca earned a degree in Political Science with minors in Communications and Religion and worked as a volunteer Young Life leader, a newspaper reporter, writer and editor for a university, and a flight follower in Pennsylvania.
In 2005, she and her husband moved to Indonesia to do relief flying in 2005 with Mission Aviation Fellowship. There, Rebecca further developed her skills as a storyteller and a truth-seeker and a bridge-builder. Today, she is using her writing and journalism skills to serve many ministries and tell their stories as they reach the marginalized and expand the Kingdom.
Chuck and Jimmie-Lynn (Jim) Linkston have worked in ministry since the early 1990s. Chuck was the youth pastor at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Asheville, NC for over 10 years. During that time Jim began mentoring and discipling younger women. In 2002, their family moved to serve with Mission to the World (MTW) in Australia and served there for 17 years. They now live in the beautiful mountains of Western North Carolina. Chuck is committed to mercy-ministry-based church planting, locally and globally, among marginal members of society. Jimmie Lynn serves with THRIVE, an organization serving missionary women all over the world.
Scott and Ulrike are passionate about technology for missions and helping young people, especially those with technical training, discover potential roles in ministry. The McConnells served as Reach Beyond missionaries for 25 years, mainly at the HCJB Global Technology Center (now SonSet Solutions). Recognizing that young people were not joining the ministry, Scott developed four college student programs designed to provide a spectrum of experience, from discovery to career commitment: Spring Break, 10- to 12-week Internship, 1- to 2-year Apprenticeship (ministry career path), and senior design project sponsorship at Christian colleges. While Scott is an electrical engineer, he has spent much of the last 20 years engaged in strategic planning. Ulrike is a registered nurse who has found her niche in outpatient hospice nursing. Ulrike has also served in a variety of ministry roles: executive administrative assistant, donations processing, hospitality, etc. Ulrike plans to work alongside Scott with students and also work two days a week as a hospice nurse. The McConnells have three grown sons and one lovely daughter-in-law.
Thanks to those of you who are including your favorite Paraclete associate in your year-end giving! Your gift is changing thousands of lives all over the world!
Learn more and donate to your favorite associate here: https://www.paraclete.net/people/