November Update

There isn't a whole lot to report on in this update, but what we have been working on has kept us busy!

Bible First

Bible First Online

Josh and I are continuing to work hard on web development. We are cautiously optimistic that by the end of the year, our students will have the option of doing their lessons online. Still a lot of work to do, but we can see the light at the end of the tunnel!

Ukrainian Bible First

Bible First Online is going to be new and cool and shiny, but we don't want to forget our roots! I'm still in the process of checking over the second edition of Lessons 6-20, and making sure they are ready to print.


On October 9th, our family moved to a new apartment. It was a lot of work to pack up, move, and then unpack, but we are really happy to have made the switch. The extra space and improved layout have made everyday life much more pleasant!

One of the highlights of the move (and also our saving grace!) was that my mom came for the three weeks around the move. Now that my youngest sister has her driver's license, Mom has more freedom to travel around, and she managed to work up the courage to attempt her first intercontinental trip. Thankfully, things went smoothly, and she was a huge help!

In the steeple

Mom, the girls, and I in the steeple of a church near our home.

In other family news, Jonathan is finally walking! Our girls all walked at about a year, but Jonathan took his sweet time and waited until he was 15 months. Unfortunately, no sooner did he learn to walk, he had to start wearing his snowsuit. Our warmer-than-average fall came to an abrupt halt recently, and hats, mittens, etc., are standard fare these days. But that's okay, as I'm sure Briana would tell you, because her birthday is in the winter!

September Update

Bible First

There are several Bible-First-related things to report on, so I'll break this up into a couple groups:

Ukrainian Bible First

Lessons 1-5 of the second edition of Bible First in Ukrainian are currently at the printers. We were promised they would be ready last week, so hopefully in the next couple days…? The next step will be to check over Lessons 6-20, make sure they are ready to print, and get them off to the printer.

Spanish Bible First

We finished going through the Spanish Bible First files, and made notes of everything that needs to be fixed, but we are currently in a holding pattern with printing prep. Our main Spanish guy, Ralph Villeneuve, is busy with school, but hopes to work on the issues we found in a few months during his holiday break.

Bible First Online

Now that we have recovered from CMO, Josh and I are dusting off our web-development hats and getting ready for the next push on Bible First Online. Hopefully by the end of the year, our students will have the option of studying online!


Some of you may remember that two years ago, Katelin broke her foot. Well, almost a month ago, she rolled her foot just like last time, it popped just like last time, and started to swell just like last time. We went in for an X-ray, but the doctors didn't feel like it was a complete break, likely just a crack. We were told Katelin didn't need a cast, just to stay off of it for a while and rest.

Sure enough, the recovery from this foot injury has been much faster. Last time, at the three-week mark, Katelin was just getting her cast off. This time, she was pretty much operational, albeit with some discomfort, and still taking it a bit slower. For which, we are very thankful!


Both Lydia and Jonathan had birthdays recently!

One other big project we have coming down the pipe is a move to a new apartment. We have found a new apartment that is a bit bigger, but more importantly, the space is broken up in such a way as to be more usable. We will be making the final arrangements this week, and hope to be moving in about a month. So if next month's update is late, or gets skipped altogether, you'll know why!

August Update

Carpathian Mountain Outreach

CMO 2019 has been over for a little over a month now, but requests are still coming in! Over the past month, we've received a little over 40 requests for Good and Evil and Bible First. Pray for the literature going out, that it would be read and understood.

Bible First

Now that we are (mostly) recovered from CMO, we are pushing forward on new fronts! We are preparing to print Bible First in not one, but two languages.

The first printing is a reprinting of Bible First in Ukrainian. The new edition will feature a more modern design, more in line with the design of Bible First in English. Some of the earlier lessons have also been revised, and those revisions will finally make it into print. We have been wanting to do this for a long time, but have never gotten around to making it happen.

The second printing will be in Spanish, which will be the first time the whole Bible First course will be available in Spanish! Ralph Villeneuve recently finished laying out the files for printing, and we are working through the files, fixing bugs and working out all the things that will need to be in place before we go to press.

Team News

Joshua and Kelsie had their baby almost month ago, and she is a cutie! Her name is Mia, and our girls are looking forward to meeting her for the first time! (For a while, we were dealing with a stomach flu bug, and had to keep our distance. We are finally over it, though!)


I've heard a lot about record heat this summer, but we have actually had a cooler summer, and we've been enjoying it! That said, with the end of summer comes school, and Katelin and the girls are back at it. Even Briana is getting in on the action, with a bit of beginner's math! (It's mostly just for fun, as she is only 3 1/2.)


Briana enjoys one of the pretty summer days!

We recently celebrated Jonathan's first birthday. He is a big, happy boy who loves to go and do, and he keeps us on our toes. Lydia's birthday will be soon, it's hard to believe that she will be seven! These kids are growing up on us!

July Update

Carpathian Mountain Outreach

It's hard to believe that we are already looking at CMO 2019 in the rearview mirror! Four young men from the US and Canada joined us for our summer outreach, and over the course of four weeks, we hosted film showings in five Carpathian villages, talked to people on the street, hiked the highest mountain in the region, passed out 94,000 tracts in five cities, and preached the Gospel in downtown Lviv. As a result of our efforts, the responses are already rolling in. Since the beginning of CMO, five people have requested enrollment in our correspondence course, Bible First, and around 50 have requested a copy of Good and Evil.

In addition to ministry, we also thoroughly enjoyed getting to know the CMO guys and sharing with them some of the things we have learned in our years on the field. All of them are interested in missions work, and some of them may even be joining us in Ukraine in the future!

The CMO Team

The CMO 2019 Team. Left to right: Kade, Nelson, Anatoli, Nathan, Ralph, Josh, Ben, and Cornelius

If you'd like to read more about CMO, I'd encourage you to check out the updates the guys wrote on the ETO blog. For example, here is the report Ralph wrote on the last week of CMO. Also, be sure to check out the photo album for that week.

Team News

Our teammates, Joshua and Kelsie, are expecting a baby about a week from now. I'm sure they would appreciate your prayers for a easy birth and a healthy baby!


Back in March, I reported that Lydia was likely to need a second surgery to fully correct her lazy eye. Well, as of her last checkup, Lydia's eyes have improved to the point that those plans are now on hold. We are now in "wait and see" mode. If things get worse, Lydia may need the surgery after all, but if they continue to improve, we may be in the clear!


After a busy month of summer ministry, we are happy to be a family again! (Daddy was gone a lot more than usual.) That said, now that the girls are getting older, they are able to take part in CMO to a degree. They joined the team a couple times for street ministry, and even went with us to the mountains once to pass out film invitations!

Passing out film invites

Melissa and Lydia pass out film invitations in the village of Lopushanka with Hosanna, Kade, and Ralph