Meet Our Workers

Julie Gibson

Julie Gibson: Born in the Middle East to missionary parents, Julie has lived in a number of Middle Eastern countries. She made the decision to follow Jesus at an early age. In 1988 her family moved to Hamilton to serve with WEC on home staff for five years. Julie was twelve when they returned to the Middle East. She struggled as a teenager with this move, and fell into depression. One night, with the weight of darkness heavy on her, she cried out to God in prayer and He lifted the weight from her spirit. Julie says, “I heard the call to prayer from the mosque and looking out my window I saw the darkness spreading from minaret to minaret all over the city. I knew I was free and safe from that darkness but the people, the children, around me were not.” Julie realized at that point that God wanted her to reach out to Muslim children. In 1998 Julie returned from the Middle East to finish her last year of school in Canada. The following year she enrolled at Bible School in Nipawin, Saskatchewan. Julie went to the Middle East for two years, before returning to complete Bible School. When her family moved back to serve at Gateway, our training centre in Langley, BC, Julie joined them and volunteered there for five years. During that time God spoke to her about Albania. Julie went with WEC to Albania in September of 2010.  God is using her experience and talents to reach children for Christ. Julie’s days are full of preparing materials and teaching lessons for the children’s clubs, youth camps and other outreach events to reach Albanian families.

Dirk

Dirk’s burden for missions came when he left Saskatchewan for a short term trip to a country in the Middle East. Returning from that trip he focused on preparing to serve overseas. He attended WEC’s training school, Gateway, in Langley BC and joined the Candidate Orientation course in Hamilton the fall of 2012, moving on to the Middle East the following year.  Dirk says, “By God’s grace I’ve been able to learn the language well enough to preach the Gospel and make disciples. I’ve seen some fruit.” Dirk is happy to keep focussed on the main task at hand, seeing God’s kingdom come on earth.

M

M spent ten years of his childhood in the Middle East with missionary parents. Seeing the needs around him, he too had the desire to share Jesus. Back in Canada he took courses in computer programing at university and later got his degree. He attended Bible School in Saskatchewan.  M joined WEC for full time service in 2014 and now serves in the Middle East. M is gifted in IT (Information Technology) and has been a great help to several ministries. Prior experience with the language and culture opens doors for meeting people. M desires to reach nomadic people and has been involved in a research project He is praying about what kind of door God will open for reaching them in the future.

We Celegrate the Life of Peggy Aitken

Jan. 22, 1920 – Sept. 5, 2018

Cheerful, loyal and prayerful worker are words that describe Peggy.  Peggy and husband Jack, who predeceased her in 2014, joined WEC Canada in 1980 to be responsible for Public Relations. They put many miles on their car traveling across Canada to promote WEC and missions.  This was at the end of a fruitful ministry with WEC in India and the UK. We admired their stamina and vision to see workers join WEC and move out to the unreached areas of the world.  Peggy shared with us her stories of early years in India and how they reluctantly had to leave in 1955 and return to the UK, their home, because of the serious illness of their son, Jonathon.  Daughter Liz was born in the UK. Jonathon passed away in 1982.

 In between travels in Canada Peggy served as receptionist at the Canadian base.  She retired at age 89, but continued to host a prayer group in her home, attend WEC meetings, and keep in touch with workers in the UK and around the world. Peggy modelled strength of character, courage to face crises and a deep love for Jesus. She remained active to the end. We miss her.

Roly and Cristina Grenier

“Looking back, we can see the Lord preparing us for the future. I, Cristina, am from Colombia. Roly is Canadian.  As a young man he attended a youth exchange program in Guatemala where he learnt Spanish.  We met when I was studying English in Canada and so we’re both fluent in Spanish and English.
“We got married in 1982.  Both Roly and I came from a non-Christian background but in wanting to be the best parents we could before God, we found the Lord. We figured that if we wanted to know what God wanted from us, we should read the Bible, and so we did.
“Once we found this new life in Jesus, we were so filled with joy, we just couldn’t contain ourselves. For us, it was the natural thing to go and tell others who had never heard the good news of a new life in Jesus Christ. We joined WEC in 1992.
“First we went to Spain, and then to Equatorial Guinea (the only Spanish speaking country in Africa) where we lived for 20 years during which the Lord taught us and molded us. We lived in a small wooden house with no running water or electricity and the whole jungle as our back yard. Our three children loved it.
“We were involved in leadership development, helping the small churches to have pastors well rooted in the Word of God and evangelizing villages where there was no church.  It was a joy to see one small tribe being reached with the Gospel for the first time, and believers with a passion to share their faith and freedom in Christ. Today, we see Africans with the same call, passion and desire we have.”
In 2016 God led Roly and Cristina into a new, exciting stage of their lives – recruiting Africans for missions. Through them the ACTS 13 program has been launched with the goal of helping the African church to identify, prepare and send out their own missionaries. They are forming a team to develop the work and also planning their first Candidate Orientation in Ethiopia in November 2018. Roly and Cristina are based in Ghana.

Fred

Mention Fred and we think evangelist. Fred loves people and he loves Jesus. People are drawn to Fred’s open, friendly manner. He would be happy to stay in Canada to win souls for Christ, but God gave Fred a definite call to serve Him in the Middle East. Following Bible School at Briercrest, Fred applied to WEC in the spring of 2015 and went on to the Middle East that fall. Fred comes from a hard working Dutch family in Abbotsford BC from whom he learned the building trade.  Fred’s desire is to live in obedience to Christ and win souls for Him. His motto is: Christ must increase and I must decrease. John 3:30

Partnering with the Church in Africa in sending cross-cultural workers to make disciples of Christ amongst the unreached in the region and beyond.

Pete and Cathy Dyck with CristyAnn and Josiah

Pete was born in Belize, Central America. Raised in a Christian family he accepted the Lord at the age of 13.  In 1984 Pete’s family moved to Aylmer, Ontario and he attended Bible School there.
Cathy, from Saskatchewan, gave her heart to Jesus at the age of ten. She trained to be a school teacher at University of Saskatchewan. During her studies God challenged her with a message given by a preacher at church on being willing to launch out into the deep, Luke 5:4. Cathy applied to WEC, but before coming to Hamilton she enrolled for a year of Bible School in Aylmer, Ontario where she met Pete. And, as they say, “The rest is history.”
Cathy completed WEC’s Candidate course in 1990 and went to Texas to study Spanish and on to Mexico for ten months. Pete joined the 1992 fall Candidate course where his call to Mexico was confirmed. Pete and Cathy were married in May, 1993 in Saskatchewan.
Pete had a vision to see a Christian camp established in Mexico and they played a key role in seeing El Monte, a multi-ministry centre, started.  During their time at El Monte the Lord laid on Pete and Cathy’s heart an unreached people group in Mexico, the Purhépecha.  In 2013 the family moved to Michoacan, a central area of the Purhépecha. Two years later they returned to Canada so that their children, Josiah and ChristyAnn, could finish secondary school and prepare for College.  Pete and Cathy are getting ready to return to Mexico in September 2018. Their vision to reach the Purhépecha for Christ has not diminished.  Pray with them to see a strong church formed among the Purhépecha that can withstand persecution and be a bold witness to their own people.  And pray for their children as they remain in Canada without their parents.

J, a young single man, came to WEC from Vancouver Island. He had completed his Bible training at Briercrest College and spent several summers in tree planting. God answered his prayer to pay off school debt in time to join the candidate orientation course in the fall of 2014. J now serves in North Africa, reaching out to young men with the message of God’s love.  J has a heart for broken people and knows that God has a purpose for him being in this country. He says, “I want to join Jesus in loving those who are not so loveable.”

L, also a graduate of Briercrest from Ontario, has a heart for missions. She joined WEC in the spring of 2016, going on to North Africa at the beginning of 2018. L doesn’t find language learning easy but is determined to keep at it until she can communicate well with the local people. She was delighted to meet a young woman at a bus stop who is willing to help her with her language. People are drawn to L’s bright smile and cheerful honest attitude.

 

A short story from L in North Africa

I was riding in the taxi the other day and got to talking to my taxi driver. Somehow the topic of religion came up, and I thought ‘hey, here’s my chance.’ I mean he was practically begging me to tell him what I believe. Unfortunately, with my limited vocabulary in religious terms we didn’t get as far as I would have hoped. I did however encourage him to read the ‘good book’ and he said he hoped we would meet again so we could discuss this further. This situation got me more excited about language learning and gave me motivation to improve so I can take advantage of these sharing opportunities every chance I get.

L grew up in a Christian home in Ontario. Following Bible College at Briercrest, L worked in Regina for several years assisting a young church plant in the city. Feeling called into missions, L served for six months with WEC Betel in South Asia.  During his time in South Asia God affirmed L’s vision to reach the people of this area for Christ. He returned to WEC to take the full Candidate Orientation Course in the fall of 2015 and went to the field in 2016. L has persevered in language study and loves to chat with locals. He teaches English to several young men and disciples new believers. His passion is to win souls for Christ.

Meet our Workers

John & Alice Grenier
Alice, originally from Mauritius, trained for cross cultural missions at Worldview, WEC’s Missionary Training College in Tasmania. She then attended the candidate orientation course in Sydney, Australia, and was accepted into WEC in 1988.  Her first assignment was Côte d’Ivoire, West Africa, where she spent three years in youth work in an urban centre. During this time, Alice’s family immigrated to Canada. Alice joined them in Canada and served on home staff in Hamilton for three years while applying for Permanent Resident status.
John served 2.5 years with OM and then a short term in the Gambia before coming to join WEC for youth ministry in The Gambia, West Africa. While in Candidate Orientation in Hamilton in 1994, he met Alice and during this time a relationship began.  John went to Fuller School of Intercultural Studies in California for three months as part of his preparation for missions.  John and Alice married in 1995. They spent 21 fruitful years in The Gambia, in youth and agricultural work. They returned to Canada in the summer of 2017. Their son, Jed, just started his first year at McMaster University. John now serves as maintenance man at the WEC Branch in Hamilton and Alice gives assistance in the finance office. WEC Canada is very pleased to welcome John and Alice on home-staff.

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