Ben and Kari Elliott
Ben and Kari Elliott, Calgarians and members at Foothills Alliance Church, are preparing to take their small family—Blaise, born in 2005, and Flora, born in 2007 —to Indonesia where they will be working assisting the team there by training pastors and church leaders and working to develop teachers.
In 1999, when Kari was scarcely 19, she and Ben were married at Foothills Alliance. After the honeymoon they packed up and began their first adventure together in Jackson, Mississippi. Here they had the opportunity to gain valuable ministry experience—first as youth workers and later Ben as an associate pastor at a rural church. These years were full of challenges that served to deepen their commitment to each other and their passion to serve in the church. After three and half years Ben had completed his MDiv and Kari her BA in English. It was in this place that God first began to work in their hearts to draw them into mission work. Both felt a distinct calling to work in a place where theological educators were scarce and where avenues to train pastors had not yet been developed.
Based on this sense of calling Ben and Kari moved to Scotland so that Ben could begin work on his PhD at the University of Aberdeen. It was in the middle of this process that their first child, Blaise was born. Despite the unique challenges of living and working in Scotland, and having a child, Ben managed to graduate with his PhD in February of 2008. Prior to graduation Ben and Kari began dialoguing with Global Ministries to find an international setting that could benefit from their skill set. The passion to serve overseas in an area of great theological need had not diminished over these years, but had continued to quietly grow in strength and conviction.
Today, through much prayer and conversation with the Global Ministries wing of the CMA, Ben and Kari have felt called to go and serve in Indonesia. Their first year will largely be one of language and culture learning. Following that year they will move to one of three seminaries; this decision will be based on need and fit nearer to the time. They are excited to be working with Christian nationals in the education system to raise up pastors to minister to local churches. Ben will serve in the role of professor, instructing in the local language. Kari will focus initially on taking care of the family, but as the kids become more autonomous is looking forward to participating in discipleship ministries.
Ben and Kari feel confident that God has called them to this specific vocation and are excited to step out in faith on this new journey. They hope that many will join together in prayer for their family as they transition to a new country and begin a new ministry.
Birthdays: Ben - October 26, Kari - April 21, Blaise - January 23, 2005, Flora - August 28, 2007
Anniversary: December 22, 1999
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