Missionaries

Here at First Baptist we a passionate about the great commission. We desire to help people make disciples all around the World. We commit 25% of our yearly budget to supporting International, U.S, and local missionaries. 

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Get to Know Our Missionaries

Cindy Aden

Cindy Aden

It’s hard to believe I have lived in Romania for two years already. I continue to make trips into Ukraine and am currently meeting with 8 people online to help them with the struggles they face with life and the ongoing war. We will do another retreat for missionaries in Ukraine the first week of October. I am also meeting with people all over Europe who are struggling in different ways as well as meeting with colleagues regularly to get more proactive help available for people. My biggest encouragement this year has been 12 people being trained to do debriefing retreats and they are actually doing them for others. This is exciting as it frees me up to do more trauma work.

Ben & Matilda Yazzie

Ben & Matilda Yazzie

After 36 years of serving the Navajo Nation with “Missions Door,” Ben & Matilda Yazzie have retired. They are continuing their passion with sharing the Gospel & training the next generation of leaders with his nonprofit called “iEquip, Inc.” This has allowed other Native leaders to study the Word, gain theological training, & receive ministry mentoring in a way that coincides with their cultural backgrounds. This makes the teachings relevant to their ministry settings & Native communities. They ask that you pray for them to continue taking the Gospel message to other Native tribes where doors open.

New Creations Ministries

New Creations Ministries

NEW CREATION MINISTRIES: Kigali, Rwanda

New Creation Ministries (NCM) was founded in 1992 by seven Rwandan leaders and an American missionary (Gary Scheer). After the genocide in 1994, the need for Christian leadership training became acute.

Since its founding, NCM has provided training to Rwandans who are doing ministry in their churches, workplaces and homes. Our aim isn’t just to provide our students with knowledge or skills. We want them to be transformed by what they’re learning – to become true disciples of Jesus.

Approximately 70% of Rwandans live in rural areas, without access to theological training in their own language. The Ministy Leader Training exists to meet that need. Over the course of two years, church leaders take courses in Biblical theology and gain skills that they can immediately apply in their ministry contexts. We also provide personalized mentoring and discipleship by visiting students in their homes and observing them in their ministries.

As Rwanda develops, there is a growing desire and need for quality higher education taught from a Christian perspective. We are working to launch the Christian Leadership Institute of Rwanda (CLIR) as an accredited university with bachelor and masters level programs. We have an amazing opportunity to impact Rwandan society by discipling its future theologians, educators, business leaders and community developers.

Rwanda continues to be a largely agrarian society, with many people growing all their own food. As the population of Rwanda increases, land is becoming scarce, food costs are rising, and food shortages are common. Many Rwandans eat only one meal a day. The Agricultural Demonstration program seeks to introduce Rwandans to new ways of growing food and stewarding their land. By connecting Biblical values with improved farming techniques, we seek to address the spiritual and practical needs of our students, their families, and their communities.

For more information, go to ncmrwanda.org.

Ramon and Ana Rodriguez

Ramon and Ana Rodriguez

Ramon and Ana Rodriguez serve in Nogales, Mexico, at the Nogales Baptist Seminary (SEBANO). Ramon is the director of the seminary and serves as Coordinator of Missionaries in Mexico through Missions Door. SEBANO completed another school year this spring, training pastors and teachers to spread the gospel in churches throughout Mexico. The seminary also holds retreats for missionaries and teachers, an Annual Missionary Banquet for women from their churches, a prison ministry called Sol de Justicia, and summer youth camps. Please pray that through each of these ministries, as well as the training for seminary students, people would hear the good news, remain faithful to the Lord, and continue to serve him.

Wes & Julie Shoemaker

Wes & Julie Shoemaker

Wes and Julie Shoemaker work with people of the Tarahumara culture of Northern Mexico. Because of the low literacy level in their very remote canyon system, speakers of this ancient language are dependent on the audio recording of God’s Word which has been distributed to them on mini-SD cards that play through their portable radios. Christian songs and scripture messages and testimonies are included on those memory cards, to help explain God’s plan and how to respond to Him. God is illuminating them and they are slowly responding to Him, despite the grave dangers of life around them. Please pray that God would raise up mighty witnesses to this people from within their own language and culture, so that His truth would endure and prevail over the lies of the enemy.

Marv Cowan

Marv Cowan

Marv works with a ministry called Missions Door out of Utah. His mission focus is sharing the truth with Latter Day Saints by serving in “Utah Christian Publications” & church plants.

Daniel and Janna Ross: First Love International Ukraine

Daniel and Janna Ross: First Love International Ukraine

Daniel and Janna Ross serve with First Love International in Ukraine.  Since the start of Russia’s full scale invasion in 2022, they had been living in Czechia, but moved back to their apartment in Kyiv this February.   They are very happy to be back home!

Since returning 3 months ago, the Rosses have been working hard to get settled and established once again. So much has changed, and it’s felt like starting over rather than picking up where they left off. Daniel is partnering with a group of Ukrainians who are helping to reach out and rebuild in a small village that was occupied by Russian forces.  They are also trying to get a non-profit used English bookstore up and running, among other things. There are many challenges to living in Ukraine right now, and they ask that you keep praying, especially for the end of the war.

Daniel and Janna Ross: First Love International Ukraine

Daniel and Janna Ross: First Love International Ukraine

   We have seen and heard so many stories of people giving and loving sacrificially during this brutal war. Even though there is so much suffering, Ukrainians are bonding together and making sure that no one has to go through this suffering alone. We, along with our partners, get to be a part of this. We plan to stand with Ukrainians until the end, and be there to help rebuild. We have already been able to help people out with rebuilding. So many Ukrainians have been so grateful for the ways that we have been able to help meet needs, and have specifically said that when we help, it is a powerful example of how they are still seen when they are going through their hardest times. There is no more powerful reminder that God hasn’t forgotten you, than when his people are able to tangibly show that. We simply get to help people, show them that they aren’t forgotten, and tell them that God hasn’t forgotten them either. Right now, our Ukrainian partners are the ones doing the real work, and sharing the hope of Christ. We are just getting them funds and supplies and trying to be an encouragement.
Daniel, Janna, and Oliver Ross
First Love International
Willie and Miley Santiago

Willie and Miley Santiago

Willie and Miley Santiago work with Cuba Connection Ministries. They do the work of ministry in Cuba by Bible distribution, training for pastors, missionaries, and leaders in their community, and other community outreach such as food distribution.

Tim & Marci Miller

Tim & Marci Miller

Tim and Marci Miller joined Cross Bar X in May 2006. CBX has been providing youth programming and activities for socially and economically disadvantaged youth since 1977. Cross Bar-X could use help with their annual work week May 13-17th and are also looking for volunteers to help with the Iron Horse on May 25th. For more info visit www.crossbarx.org or email theranch@crossbarx.org.

Evan & Julie Renger

Evan & Julie Renger

Greetings! The Lord has moved on the ASU campus as we have seen 5 students (Charlise, Bryce, Edwin, Nathan and Zack S.) give their lives to Jesus in the past month and a half!

PRAYER REQUESTS: Please pray that Charlise, Bryce, Edwin, Nathan and Zack would grow strong in their faith in the coming days (1 Peter 2:2)

Thank you for helping enable us to reach ASU students that don’t know Christ and strengthening those that do!

Dima and Olya Tamkovich: Campus Crusade

Dima and Olya Tamkovich: Campus Crusade

Dima and Olya currently lead campus ministries for Cru in Belarus. They are continually challenged by the political situation, yet, they have several committed volunteers with Bible studies going on in dormitories on campus. Their outreach also includes a summer and winter camp that draws many nonbelievers.

Prayer Requests:

  • A new larger vehicle for use in the ministry
  • Dima as he is currently in Saudia Arabia exploring a new ministry opportunity.
  • Protection and spiritual growth in a difficult situation.

Want to be on their newsletter and prayer list?  Contact one of the missions team members.

Kat Marks: Fellowship of Christian Athletes

Kat Marks: Fellowship of Christian Athletes

Kat Marks is the Southwest CO FCA Area Director and oversees the ministry of FCA in 7 counties (Rio Grande, Mineral, Archuleta, La Plata, Dolores, Montezuma, and San Juan). Right now, we have SW CO FCA huddles in 5 of those counties. FCA’s mission is “To lead every coach and athlete into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ & His Church.” We currently have 6 FCA staff in SW CO. In Southwest CO, we have 19 huddles at the middle school, high school, and college level that meet regularly to unite faith and sports and share the Gospel each week. We also have a SW CO Coaches Bible Study that meets weekly and has middle school, high school, and college coaches who attend to grow in their walks, learn what it means to be a Christian coach, and enjoy fellowship with other Christian coaches.
Prayer Requests:
  • Looking for 5 more people to join our SW CO FCA Board
  •  Needing 5 more monthly donors to join my team
  • Raising funds this summer for more FCA staff and huddle funds
  • FCA 5K coming up on April 20th- that we would raise enough funds for our summer camp scholarships.
  • That we would reach more and more athletes and coaches on each of these campuses for Christ!
  • That God would continue to open doors for us to share the Gospel with more athletes and coaches.
If you are interested in getting more involved or want more information, please reach out to Kat at kmarks@fca.org

Ross and Mindy Smith

Ross and Mindy Smith are international missionaries serving in unreached areas of the world. Their full update cannot be posted anywhere electronically for their safety so please read the physical bulletin this Sunday for a full update on the Smith family and the work they are doing for the kingdom of Jesus!

Yoel and Leticia Santiago: World Serve Ministries

Yoel and Leticia Santiago: World Serve Ministries

Yoel and Leticia are with World Serve Ministries. Their ministry focus is supporting churches & pastors through food and Bible distribution, offering micro-financial loans, managing warehouses for humanitarian aid, & training children’s leaders.

Pray for:

The pastors and leaders of Cuba in this time of great humanitarian crisis.

The training of 265 pastors and 16 Bible centers that train missionaries.

The massive evangelistic work being done where 10% are responding to the gospel in faith.

More bible and new leaders in Nionos.

Yoel and Leticia’s Daughter and their granddaughter who is in intensive care.

KJ & Jennisue Jessen: Compass 31

KJ & Jennisue Jessen: Compass 31

In 2011, KJ and Jennisue established Compass 31 with a mission that holds strong today: to make Jesus known by combating human trafficking through prevention, restoration, and disciple-making. They have witnessed God’s transformational grace accomplishing more than they ever dared ask or imagine. The effect has been immense, with more than 53,000 lives impacted in the past year alone through their prevention and restoration programs.

KJ and Jennisue have taken the lead in orchestrating comprehensive, Christ-centered restoration initiatives on a global scale. These endeavors offer solace and an opportunity for those who have experienced human trafficking to find redemption, heal their wounds, and lead lives brimming with freedom and significance. Their reach recently expanded to Uganda, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Josh and Rachel Destree

Josh and Rachel Destree

We are now 6 months into our new ministry with Abiding Waters. In this ministry, our hope is to build up the church, pastors, and cross-cultural missionaries – helping believers intentionally foster a closer walk with Jesus. Over the coming 9 months, we are running our first retreat series, focused on spending extended quality time alone with God. Each month, we will host retreats locally in Denver as well as online, highlighting different aspects of fully engaging with God through prayer, Scripture meditation, and other spiritual disciplines.
 
Please pray as we develop the content for this retreat series. Pray that it would bear fruit in the lives of participants, helping them to have a bigger view of God and the gospel, and enable them to develop rhythms of consistent, quality time alone with their Savior.
 
FBC family, we would love to have any of you join us for one of the online events! For info and to register, visit: abidingwaters.org/events
We are so thankful for your ongoing prayers and partnership with us as we develop this new ministry!
Love,
Josh, Rachel, and Enoch
Gersan and Betty Valcin

Gersan and Betty Valcin

Gersan and Betty Valcin continue to stand strong in the Lord’s strength in ministering to the unstable country of Haiti.  They have implemented a new format at The Village Church in Port-au-Prince.  People are greatly enjoying the freedom they are finding in worshiping the Lord and taking advantage of the new opportunities to share with one another in the congregation, and come forward at the end of a service to ask for personal prayer!

Since the church’s previous leadership team all left Haiti to come legally to the US under an Executive Order of Biden’s administration, Valcin’s are now building a new leadership team and finding joy and excitement in the new leaders that God has brought to them and lots of people are coming to the Lord!

Pray for their continued safety and security in ministering in Haiti!

Durango Pregnancy Center

Durango Pregnancy Center

Durango Pregnancy Center is here to support and care for parents in La Plata County seeking assistance with pregnancy and parenting. We believe that the best way to support the choice for life is to be for the life of the unborn and the life of the parents. We come along side parents facing challenging situations with material assistance, emotional support, and education. Our clients have bravely and sacrificially chosen life, and we want to help them make the best life possible for their baby and themselves. Our free services include prenatal education, parenting education, emergency and material assistance, and an educational grant fund for single moms.

Our work is a daily blessing which is made even more so by the generous support of individuals and churches like First Baptist. Your support in prayer would be greatly appreciated.

Focused Prayer

  • That each client knows the value of their life and seeks relationship with the Lord.
  • That the children of each client will be surrounded by love.
  • That every donor and volunteer is blessed by their service.
  • That all involved in the work of DPC would be sensitive to the Lord’s leading.
  • That DPC would always serve with the heart of Christ.
Nicaragua Missions Trip

Nicaragua Missions Trip

Recently, a team from First Baptist just returned from Nicaragua where they worked with our sister church, Casa de Dios. While there, they helped with Vacation Bible school, they helped build homes, and they also did a food distribution project. Additionally, the members who were sent experienced wonderful fellowship and relationship building with our brothers and sisters in Nicaragua.

Kyle Ricedorff

Kyle Ricedorff

The Ricedorff’s are missionaries to Poland. Their primary ministry is preaching the gospel, equipping believers in Polish churches, and theological training. They have started an educational training center they call Logos to help equip people with education similar to that of a seminary. They are currently in the middle of a 3 week furlough here in America and will visit many churches that support them.

Prayer Requests

  • Logos Bible Institute. Please keep praying that the school will be fruitful.
  • Furlough travels. Please pray for God’s strength for all the travels and that it would be a fruitful time.
  • Christine’s health.
Tami Snowden

Tami Snowden

As I enter into 25 years of ministry, I am humbled that God uses my ministry to bring the hope and healing of Jesus to hurting children throughout the world. In 2023: Over 230 caregivers of children in crisis from 22 different countries were trained in Trauma and Crisis Care, Working with Children with Disabilities, and Counseling Children. 40 caregivers from Congo, Rwanda, and Morocco were trained in how to use There is Hope for Me, a trauma recovery booklet. There is Hope for Me was translated into four new languages. Everyone who took our training works directly with children in crisis and now is better equipped to help the children heal from traumatic experiences. My prayer is that these children live a life knowing Jesus as their healer and Savior.

Joy Larson: Treasure Ministry

Joy Larson: Treasure Ministry

One of Treasure Ministry’s biggest events annually is Night to Shine. Night to Shine is a beautiful prom experience provided for our special needs community, celebrating them as kings and queens. This year’s Night to Shine will be hosted in Farmington but will be celebrating guests from Durango, Cortez & Pagosa Springs in addition to Farmington. Please sign up, volunteer & come be a part of a truly amazing night!

Please pray for:

  • God to provide volunteers
  • Safety and ease of travel for volunteers and participants
  • That God would bless the special needs community
Clay and Lauren Kannard

Clay and Lauren Kannard

Clay and Lauren Kannard are missionaries in Rome Italy. Clay is a co pastor of a church in Rome where their main focus in evangelism, supporting church playing of evangelical churches in Rome, and theological training. Pray for the work they do in terms of mercy missions to refugees, evangelism to Roman Catholic Italians, and the church plants in Rome.

Joy Larson: Treasure Ministry

Joy Larson: Treasure Ministry

Treasure Ministry has served our special needs community for the past 10 years by providing fun events for the guests to enjoy.
Treasure Fests are our smaller 3-hour themed events held at the fairgrounds bi-monthly or quarterly. Night to Shine is a large prom-like event held each February since 2017 and we also hosted a day camp, Champions Camp, each Summer until Covid. Each of these events is designed to bless our guests and let them know that they are loved and appreciated for who they are, to give volunteers the opportunity to grow in their love of God and others, to support the parents and caregivers of our guests and finally to give our guests and their families viable access to the Gospel.
Treasure Ministry is currently facing some unique challenges with staffing our events with volunteers, replacing people who were once on our Leadership Team, and having enough people to do the work (physical, logistical and administrative) so that the ministry can keep going.  We have identified that these next months will be viewed as part of God’s direction in whether or not we can continue to reach out to our friends in the special needs community.  You can play a part in this season by…
1. Praying for God’s will to be done with Treasure Ministry
2. Praying to see if God is asking you to be involved and if so, in what capacity
3. Praying for the guests and their families to feel loved by God and drawn into His arms.
Kelly (KJ) & Jennisue Jessen

Kelly (KJ) & Jennisue Jessen

In 2011, KJ and Jennisue established Compass 31 with a mission that holds strong today: to make Jesus known by combating human trafficking through prevention, restoration, and disciple-making. They have witnessed God’s transformational grace accomplishing more than they ever dared ask or imagine. The effect has been immense, with more than 53,000 lives impacted in the past year alone through their prevention and restoration programs.
KJ and Jennisue have taken the lead in orchestrating comprehensive, Christ-centered restoration initiatives on a global scale. These endeavors offer solace and an opportunity for those who have experienced human trafficking to find redemption, heal their wounds, and lead lives brimming with freedom and significance. Their reach recently expanded to Uganda, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Hleb and Sasha Yermakou: Albufiera, Portugal

Hleb and Sasha Yermakou: Albufiera, Portugal

Hleb and Sasha grew up in Belarus and were involved in ministry there until the political situation became so bad they had to leave.  They have been in Portugal for a number of years ministering to refugees from Ukraine, Belarus and Russia.  It is a challenge to minister to all three groups at once.  Hleb leads a weekly Bible study for this group and they have started a sunday school ministry.  In addition, they help new refugees find housing, employment and and how to navigate a new culture.

Also Hleb does some preaching and translation work for the international church they are affliated with.

Pray for: Oppurtunites to reach more refugees with the Gospel

Wisdom on how to foster peace and love between the three different groups.

Yoel Santiago

Yoel Santiago

Yoel and Leticia are with World Serve Ministries. Their ministry focus is supporting churches & pastors through food and Bible distribution, offering micro-financial loans, managing warehouses for humanitarian aid, & training children’s leaders.

Malcolm and Leah Hillewaert

Malcolm and Leah Hillewaert

Malcolm and Leah Hillewaert work with Master Plan Ministries in Alamosa, CO, reaching students at Adams State University. They focus on evangelism, discipleship and leadership development. Their main meeting is a weekly Bible study called Anchored, which is held at their home. They live literally across the street from the student union building, and have students over almost every day. They have 3 kids: Ruth (8), John (7) and Zeke (4).
Main prayer requests:
– for students involved to keep catching the vision to lead and to share Jesus with others.
– for Cana, who will be interning with them next semester.
– for Leah’s body to be healed from cancer (which last scans didn’t show any cancer in new places, just the same small spot).v

Gersan and Betty Valcin

Gersan and Betty Valcin

Gersan and Betty Valcin have the ministries of The Village Church in Port-au-Prince,Haiti and Jacob’s Well Christian Campground in the northern part of Haiti. The Valcin’s reach people for Christ in both the French and Creole language around the world because the Sunday sermons at The Village Church are broadcast live each week over the Internet!

At present, Haiti is in crisis and without stable government. Gangs have taken over the country. Valcin’s personal security is one of their greatest needs. In the climate of fear that exists in Haiti right now, people seek God and Valcin’s know that God’s will for them is to stay in Haiti to share about Jesus, who is the answer to change the culture of the Haiti.

Worship With Us

Sundays at 9 AM & 10:45 AM

Location

332 East 11th Street
Durango, CO 81301