Shannon and Elizabeth were married in 2000 and have one daughter, Rebeka.
Salvation Testimony of Shannon & Elizabeth:
Shannon: I am from Wauchula, Florida and grew up attending a Southern Baptist church with my family. By age seven, I understood that I was a sinner and that Jesus was the only way to obtain forgiveness and cleansing from my sin. I eagerly accepted the gospel message and was baptized. As I grew and was confronted with new issues and temptations, I experienced God’s continued mercy and grace to help me have spiritual victories. In the summer of my 18th year, I experienced a “spiritual growth spurt” and began to understand my relationship with Jesus more, including God’s lordship and my ability to continuously walk in the Spirit. I continue to learn from God and grow in his mercy and grace.
Elizabeth: I am also from Wauchula, Florida and grew up attending a Southern Baptist church with my family. In the second grade, I realized my need for forgiveness and salvation through Jesus alone and distinctly remember a significant feeling of peace that followed my decision to trust in Christ for salvation. As a teenager, I continued growing in my relationship with God and my understanding of what it means to follow him and grow in his mercy and grace. As a young married woman in 2003, I took part in a discipleship program and then began formally discipling others.
We were both discipled in Ocala, Florida at what was then New Testament Baptist Church, now One Life Fellowship. We both took part in Discipleship 2, which included surveys of the Old Testament, New Testament, and a basic hermeneutics course. We took courses at NTBC on how to disciple as well. While living in New Philadelphia we participated in the class Jesus and the early Church. As members of Avant, we completed their Candidate Orientation Program and Team Training, two and three week intensive learning times respectively. We have also benefited from many conferences and seminars connected with Avant and as believers in America.
Ministry Before the Mission Field:
While at New Testament Baptist Church, we taught Sunday School classes for 3-5 year olds, and 4th & 5th graders. We also served as counselors in the ministry for single adults. We participated in two short-term (2-3 week) mission trips to the Philippines. While living in New Philadelphia, we participated in the ESL ministry at First Baptist.
Current Ministry in the Czech Republic:
We are currently part of a seven-member church planting team in Prague, Czech Republic. In our fifth year here (2013), a church is burgeoning entirely from new Christians. While we continue to sow the seed of the gospel, looking for those whom God is drawing to Jesus, our primary focus is shifting to discipling and seeing the national believers develop as leaders and take on responsibilities. We pray for and are encouraging the multiplication of believers, leaders, and churches.
Sending Church/Mission Board:
Sending Church: First Baptist Church, New Philadelphia. Mission Agency: Avant Ministries.