Partnering Together for the Sake of the Gospel

The Missions Team exists to support and promote the local and global task of reaching people with the good news of Jesus Christ. It focuses on providing opportunities for people to have a closer connection to missionary activities. CrossLife lends support to our Career Missionaries in the following ways:

  • Prayer for each individual (see current prayer needs)
  • Communication, education, and promotion to the congregation
  • Financial support
  • Care for missionaries on home assignment
  • Continuing education for missionaries

Our Mission Partners

You can read about some of the individuals we're proud to partner with in efforts to fulfill the commission Jesus gave to make disciples of all nations (Matt. 28:19-20).

Keith and Judy Anderson are EFCA ReachGlobal missionaries equipping Spanish-speaking leaders in over 24 countries of the world. Judy has served in various capacities on the mission field but her greatest joy has come from teaching grades 2 and 3 in a missionary children’s school. Keith is the director of ProMETA. ProMETA provides evangelical leaders with accessible and cost-efficient online theological education (discipleship) without requiring them to leave their existing ministries, jobs, or families. The formal programs offered by ProMETA focus on Christian Leadership and Contextualized Biblical Theology, two critical needs of the Church in Latin America. Programs at other levels are currently being developed. ProMETA leverages technology to build online learning communities in which leaders interact with one another and learn together. HOW ARE WE INVOLVED? When Keith and Judy were at Trinity, they attended our church. Keith taught the high school Sunday School class. When they went on the mission field to Venezuela, CrossLife began their support. We have the privilege of an ongoing relationship with Keith and Judy and most recently our church partnered with ProMeta to raise funds for an online seminary course. For more information about LATN, go to

Ben and Beth Barthelemy are serving with TEAM in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa. They both have a passion for teaching God's Word and seeing people come to a better understanding of themselves, God, and what he requires of those committed to him. They have joined the staff of Union Bible Institute in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa where Ben is engaged in Zulu language study. Union Bible Institute serves the South African church by providing theological education for students who desire to serve the Lord in ministry. Ben is currently teaching Hebrew and other classes on the Old Testament. Beth's ministry will be primarily to their family in these early years, but she is excited about developing discipling relationships with student wives and other women on campus. HOW ARE WE INVOLVED? Ben & Beth both received master's degrees from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, during which time CrossLife became their church home. We are one of two sending churches for the Barthelemys.

Ben and Jeanne Beckner are serving as missionaries with International Messengers in France. They are involved in diverse ministries focused on the training and mobilizing of French believers and churches for cross-cultural and world missions. Ben helped launch several French non-profit organizations, including Français Sans Frontières, which is involved in French language and culture outreach to universities, high schools, and language institutes in countries from Ukraine, Albania, and North Africa. Ben also teaches online courses in missions and missiology. In addition to writing chapters and articles for various French missiological publications, Ben is an adjunct professor of missiology at various French-language Bible schools and seminaries, such as the Institut Biblique de Genève, Switzerland, and the Institut de Théologie de Jérusalem, Israel. Jeanne is involved in international women's outreach and French Christian literature ministries, including the translation of a recent French missionary biography. HOW ARE WE INVOLVED? Ben & Jeanne began attending CrossLife during their first year of marriage while Ben was a student at Trinity Seminary and Jeannie worked for the missions department at Trinity. Ben served as a member of our missions committee and both Ben and Jeanne were willing volunteers. They loved CrossLife, and we have been privileged to be part of their ministry from the very beginning! We have also been blessed to be involved in Ben and Jeanne’s ministry by sending groups of volunteers from CrossLife to serve in summer English camps. See

Wayne and Barb Brink are serving with Cru (Campus Crusade for Christ) and are based in Prescott, AZ. They work with the Jesus Film Project. Based on the Gospel of Luke, the "JESUS" film has now been translated into more than 1,600 languages, with new languages being added every month. This allows God’s Word to speak to people in more than 200 countries in languages they know and understand. Their goal is to show the Gospel story to everyone in the world in his/her own language. HOW ARE WE INVOLVED? Wayne and Barb were attending CrossLife prior to moving to California with the Jesus Film Project. The Brinks were active members of our church and it is our joy to support them. See for more information.     

Gerry Buchholz is serving with CRU, (Campus Crusade for Christ) and the JESUS Film Project. One of her primary responsibilities is as a coaching coordinator within Cru. Her leadership abilities and experience as a teacher also enable her to teach a moral/ethics curriculum in a number of Middle Eastern and Asian countries. Gerry is also part of the Cru national executive team that provides direction for Cru’s US ministry. Gerry’s ministry areas are diverse and through them she finds so many open doors God gives her to reach others with the gospel. HOW ARE WE INVOLVED? CrossLife has supported Gerry and her late husband for many years. Whether it is through the Jesus film or teaching a curriculum to adults in Middle Eastern countries, Gerry says, “I love serving Him in partnership with you all." All praise to God for letting us be a part of what He is doing throughout the world. For more information see

Youssouf and Awa DembeleThe Lord has opened many doors in service for the Dembeles in Mali and elsewhere in the world. They are involved in Pastoral Ministry, Bible Translation, Training, Teaching, writing, and Church Administration. They exercise pastoral ministry with Eglise Evangelique Protestante du Mali (EEPM: Evangelical Protestant Church of Mali). HOW ARE WE INVOLVED? Youssouf and Awa Dembele were part of our church while Youssourf attended TEDs. Youssouf taught adult bible classes and Awa was active in the children’s ministries. In our ongoing relationship, we have been able to support the Dembeles by providing additional funds for projects to support individual pastors in Mali. For more information see

Cheque and Hope Garcia have served for many years with Back2Back ministries which works to provide "care for today and hope for tomorrow" for orphan children around the world. They are currently serving in the Dominican Republic working to begin a new Back2Back site there. Their roles include recruiting and training volunteers to support orphan children spiritually, physically, emotionally, and socially (the five-point model of Back2Back), and Hope is trained to educate others in Trauma Competent Care. HOW ARE WE INVOLVED? Since 2010, CrossLife has sent teams of adults and students to serve with Back2Back in Monterrey, Mexico, where Cheque and Hope were formerly serving.  Cheque and Hope have been very involved in training, leading, and debriefing our teams.  

Francesco and Manuela Grassi are missionaries with the United World Mission and are serving at the Italian Evangelical Bible Institute in Rome. As a missional scholar for the Theological Education Initiative (a branch of the UWM), Francesco is involved in the ministry of theological education, both residentially as well as in the various decentralized schools around Italy. Together with Manuela, they also serve as mentors, providing counseling and hospitality to students living away from home. Their passion and prayer is for Italian believers to recover the importance of a sound and holistic biblical formation for the life and witness of the church in Italy. IBEI (Rome) is intentionally and concretely invested in this regard. With its focus on two critical needs of the Italian churches – the theological/spiritual/practical formation of believers and the education of the many bi-vocational church leaders around Italy – the school maintains the clear and ultimate goal of helping the whole church grow to maturity in Christ. HOW ARE WE INVOLVED? Francesco, Manuela, and their family have been active in CrossLife during their years studying at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. We share their passion to train and equip current and future church leaders around the world.

 Leon and Mandy Poplawski work with Cru. They lead Cru City in Lake County. They are involved in building leaders who can reach, engage, and equip others in their world. Leon and Mandy want to help leaders in the workplace, community, and church live out their callings and learn to communicate their faith. They lead groups, teach classes in Lake County churches, and mentor individuals in living out the Gospel, helping them to see their work matters and what they do adds to the flourishing of Lake County and brings shalom to the Chicago area. Leon and Mandy are also involved nationally with Cru City by field testing materials on Integrating Faith and Work). HOW ARE WE INVOLVED? Leon and Mandy have been connected to CrossLife since 1995. They have taught many training classes such as “Integrating Faith and Work.” Leon has served in leadership and leadership development and Mandy served with our Worship Ministry for 14 years. They continue to build leaders and mentor individuals. Mandy currently serves with CrossLife MOPs. We have been privileged to have been mission partners with this couple since 1999. See the Cru website for more info.

Lonnie and Debbie Smith are serving with EFCA ReachGlobal in Marseilles, France and are involved in church planting. The Smiths are sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ in a culture that is becoming increasingly atheistic. They are using friendship evangelism to reach out to various people in their community such as Armenians. HOW ARE WE INVOLVED? Lonnie and Debbie Smith approached our church for support upon the recommendation of EFCA ReachGlobal. Entering the mission field with a large family already in place provided a challenge for this couple when they felt God’s call. We have enjoyed watching and praying as their ministry grows and their children mature. For more information see EFCA ReachGlobal and their blog

Carlos and Suzanne Tejada are serving with ReachGlobal in Costa Rica. Carlos is providing training to pastors from different denominations in Cartago, Costa Rica. He is promoting unity by bringing pastors and leaders together for training and informal events where the pastors can interact and get to know each other (dinners, BBQs, day in the park, etc). He mentors a small group of pastors. These efforts are helping pastors to be more effective in their teaching and preaching. Carlos is coming alongside indigenous church leaders to support them and is mobilizing leaders from Cartago to minister and preach the gospel to the Cabecares, an indigenous group, on the eastern side of Costa Rica. Suzanne’s primary ministry focus is on the family with their two young children. Recently she began serving at a local orphanage (Pueblito) as well as supporting fundraising and promotional efforts for Casa Viva, a Christian non-profit that places children removed from their homes with foster families. HOW ARE WE INVOLVED? CrossLife was Suzanne’s home church from birth until her 20’s when she first went to serve in Honduras as a short-term missionary sent out from CrossLife. and Ann Wheeler are serving in Cochabamba, Bolivia with SIM. Mike teaches Bible, Theology, and Greek at the Bible Seminary. He also coordinates the Seminary's master's program, which is an extension of SETECA in Guatemala. SETECA is one of the leading evangelical seminaries in Latin America; so it is a privilege to have their master's program. He is also heading up the accreditation process for the seminary. Ann helps at Mosoj Chaski, a ministry to the Quechua, Bolivia's largest people group and descendants of the Inca. The ministry not only has a radio station, but also other aspects like the Mobile Bible School and Bible study aids to help Quechua pastors. Also, Ann works with mission administration, helping other ministries improve their governance and finances so they can become self-supporting. HOW ARE WE INVOLVED?  We have given a special gift to help make the accreditation possible for their Bible Seminary. For more information see