Missionary Spotlight: Canadian-based Missionaries
Missionary Spotlight: Canadian-based Missionaries
Get to know our Canadian-based missionaries: Carol Hawkins, Jeremy Mullin, McDaniel Phillips, and Julia Schindeler!
In this missionary spotlight, we are featuring four of our missionaries who all have one thing in common: they are Canadian-based. Although TWR Canada has many missionaries who serve internationally, we also have unique opportunities for missionaries to serve locally in support, technical and creative roles. We hope that through their stories, you will see how God equips us all with distinct talents that we can use toward a collective mission to speak hope to the world.
Carol was undoubtedly called to mission work, for as she describes it, “Every other door shut, and the door to TWR opened.” Carol’s husband, Rick, was a computer expert and discovered that TWR was looking for missionaries in technical roles. He had all the right skills for an open position with TWR Europe, so in 1993, Carol and Rick moved to the Netherlands. Here, Carol served with TWR Europe in radio broadcast scheduling and sponsorship coordination.
In 2016, Rick retired, and they came back to Canada. At this time, TWR Canada recognized that Carol’s giftings were well-suited for a position in donor relations, but with her background in scheduling, she thought they had given her the wrong job! God knew this was the right place for her to serve, however. Carol now diligently works to thank donors, manage incoming and outgoing prayer requests, and provide donors with focused updates on projects they are invested in.
Much of her experience abroad has allowed her to flourish in her role. Due to her time in broadcast scheduling, she is knowledgeable about the technical side of TWR’s projects and all their moving pieces, which benefits her conversations with donors about certain projects.
Recently, Carol was able to use her past experience in the Netherlands to bless a Dutch-Canadian donor over the phone by praying with her in her heart language. The consoled donor said, “This could only be from the Lord.” Praise God for Carol’s warm demeanor as she continues this important work of thanking donors for their sacrificial giving and sharing how intertwined they are in our vision to reach the world for Christ.
Jeremy, a missionary in the London office, is an example of how God calls people to missions in all different capacities. He manages user support and oversees the computers and IT equipment in the London and Markham offices. He is also involved in the studio with the Spanish and Arabic productions of Bible Stories Alive.
Jeremy is educated as an Electronics Technician and has always desired to use his skills to help people and advance the gospel. Having grown up in snowy Georgian Bay, he jokes that after college he wanted to work between 20 degrees North and 20 degrees South. God granted him this in his early ministry with TWR in Bonaire, situated around 12 degrees North. Later, he was placed in Vienna, Austria, and looks back fondly at his time taking work trips to other countries and seeing how people were impacted by the ministry.
In 2009, Jeremy and his wife, Heidi, felt some change coming. They were asked by a family member in Canada to help with their kids, which they ended up doing for a few years prior to being blessed with children of their own. Jeremy picked up his technical missionary work in London, Ontario, where they now continue to grow and raise their family of seven children!
Jeremy acknowledges that people often think of missionaries as sharing the gospel in far-off places but says, “While that may be the image or calling some have, a missionary is any believer who is doing this wherever they are with the skills they have. All these parts are needed for good stewardship and a fully functional ministry so the people on the ground can also do their job.” We praise God for how he is using Jeremy’s technical skills as a local missionary.
After serving internationally for many years and feeling ready to close that chapter of his life, McDaniel received a providential invitation from TWR Canada in 2012. He was asked to work with on-the-ground partners in equipping believers to make disciples across the global Church. When reflecting on the timing of this offer, he described it as a cumulative moment that all his ministry and experience had led to, saying, “A work that God had started in and through me 25 years earlier was in this vision.”
McDaniel advances Discipleship Essentials globally by developing and maintaining contact with partners, encouraging them, and facilitating ongoing training they may need or desire. His role involves building a bridge between the tool (DE) and the local discipleship ministries to see God’s intended use of DE in facilitating the spiritual transformation of communities rather than just being an exchange of information.
McDaniel works with our DE partners to provide leadership training and further DE in many different languages and formats. Three areas where he has seen the ministry sink deeper than we could have ever imagined are North Africa, the Middle East, and the Philippines. The lasting fruit of these partnerships is undeniable, with over 15,000 small groups using DE around the world! Praise God!
Although much of our ministry happens abroad, the Church in Canada is diverse and can benefit from TWR’s language-specific resources. Canada is home to the world’s sixth-largest number of unreached people groups. The GTA alone has over 250 ethnicities and 170 languages represented, which is where God has strategically placed Julia as a missionary. She enhances the profile of TWR Canada in the GTA by connecting with churches and supporters and by building bridges with newcomers and immigrant communities to share TWR’s multilingual resources with them.
Back when Julia was a student, she attended a missions conference and signed a pledge card to become a missionary. She has known about TWR for decades and always had the desire to serve with us, saying, “From the very start my passion was radio. I believe that God uses media to broadcast his message.” After working in refugee resettlement and in the media, Julia felt a call to return to her first love – to serve God’s Church and fulfill her calling to be a missionary. How beautiful it is to see that God had not forgotten Julia’s pledge to become a missionary and how he orchestrates his children’s lives to bear much fruit through ministry (John 15:5).
Julia says it can be challenging to identify the churches and outreach workers who could benefit from TWR’s heart-language evangelism and discipleship materials. However, God continues to open doors, and she shares that it is rewarding and fruitful to build relationships with newcomers and assist them in their ministry. Please pray for Julia as she seeks to get heart-language media into the hands of those who need it.
Thank you for reading!
If you are feeling encouraged by these stories and inspired that God can use your skills to serve with us in a technical, creative or support role, please reach out here. To learn more about TWR Canada’s missionaries and support them in this life-giving work, click here.