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Mission: Nepal 2012

Team Bios

Brandy Everts

Nationality: Canadian. Occupation: Horticulturist and missionary (Climbing For Christ staff member). Missions with Climbing For Christ: Fifth. (Numerous with other ministries, including missions to Nepal.)

How long have you climbed? More intensely in the last 4 years. But growing up my family and I would go hiking in the Rockies. Type of climbing you do: Hiking and Trekking, or whatever it takes to get to the people group that God has sent us to. Highlight of climbing career: On Mission: Nigeria 2011 in December, when we were hiking to a village in the Koma Hills in 100-degree F heat, God brought us to Waneke, the village head. While talking with him and presenting the Gospel, his eyes were opened and he said, “I want to live!” and for the very first time Waneke talked to Jesus! God is greatly to be praised.

How long have you been a Christian: 11 years. Type of ministry you are blessed to serve in: Youth & Young adults, and Climbing For Christ.

Favorite Scripture verse (and why): 1 Corinthians 9: 20-27. “To the Jews I became as a Jew, so that I might win Jews; to those who are under the Law, as under the Law though not being myself under the Law, so that I might win those who are under the Law; to those who are without law, as without law, though not being without the law of God but under the law of Christ, so that I might win those who are without law. To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak; I have become all things to all men, so that I may by all means save some. I do all things for the sake of the Gospel, so that I may become a fellow partaker of it. Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win. Everyone who competes in the games exercises self-control in all things. They then do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. Therefore I run in such a way, as not without aim; I box in such a way, as not beating the air; but I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified.” It’s my life’s goal.

Special “God moment” you’d like to share: When I suffered from daily migraines for 3½ years and on June 1, 2011, God showed me Isaiah 40:1 “…And called out to her, that her warfare has ended…” Since then I haven’t had a migraine!! God is good!

What does Climbing For Christ mean to you? It is an awesome ministry and I am stoked to be a part of it! It is all about fulfilling the great commission and not wasting your life while here on earth but going and answering God’s call. Acts 1:8 — “but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.” Go!!

Gary Fallesen

Nationality: American. Occupation: Missionary. Missions with C4C: 26th (second to Nepal — that's me at right in the photo preaching about the armor of God at a Central Region in January 2011).

How long have you climbed? Since 1996. Type of climbing you do: Mostly hiking/trekking and mountaineering. Highlight of climbing career: Going from a mountaineer (of sorts) to a missionary (of sorts) — by the grace and power of God.

How long have you been a Christian? Since 1983. Type of ministry you are blessed to serve in: The church on the go.

Favorite Scripture verse (and why): Isaiah 6:8. “Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, 'Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?' And I said, 'Here am I. Send me!'”  This is one of my life verses.

Special “God moment” you'd like to share: Listening to Sumitra's testimony in the Central Region of Nepal in January 2011, I was broken by her words. She (and her father) kept saying how sorry they were for not hearing about Jesus before illness left her paralyzed. She was sorry for not hearing. But how could she have heard if no one went to tell her? Our Great Physician healed her after she heard and gave her life to Christ. “What if I have got Jesus earlier before being paralyzed?” she asked. “I am so sorry.” This was not Sumitra’s fault, nor the fault of anyone in her family. It is our responsibility — the responsibility of the church, the body of Jesus — to GO and share the Gospel of Christ with the Sumitras of the world. This is the driving force behind everything I will do in Nepal. [CLICK HERE to read Sumitra's story and follow the link to a video from Mission: Nepal 2011.]

What does Climbing For Christ mean to you? It's ALL about Him! It's from Him and through Him and for Him, as it says in Romans 11:36. And it is because of Him that we are sent where others will not or cannot go. “This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples” (John 15:8). To God alone be the glory!

Marissa Gardiner

Nationality: Canadian. Occupation: Recent high school graduate. Missions with C4C: First.

How long have you climbed? I've done some minor climbing and hiking throughout my teenage years. Type of climbing you do: Rock climbing and hiking. Highlight of climbing career: Climbing a real face of rock for the first time! It was very exhilarating!

How long have you been a Christian? 5 years. Type of ministry you are blessed to serve in: Children, youth, music, Christian summer camp.

Favorite Scripture verse and why: Philippians 4:6-7. “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” These verses are a reminder that when I am anxious, worried, or scared that I don't have to feel that way because the situation is in God's hands and it will work out for his glory!

Special “God moment” you’d like to share: I was working as a Cabin Leader for a Bible camp in Saskatchewan this past summer. I was already planning on going to Nepal with C4C in 2012. I knew that there may be some miraculous works on the missions’ trip and was nervous that I had never really seen a healing through my own prayers. I was in the tent with one of my teenage campers when she had been complaining about the pain in her hip. God spoke to me then and there, “Tell her that I can heal her.” I told her and prayed for her hip. After the prayer I asked her how her hip was and she said it was a little bit better. I prayed a second time and after that she said it was fine! Praise God, it confirmed that God could use me like I heard of Him using other people!

What does Climbing For Christ mean to you? Climbing For Christ means that I can “Go” — as Jesus asked us before he went up to heaven. I can obey the great commission to preach the Gospel and make disciples to honor and glorify GOD!

Megh Gurung

Nationality: Nepali. Occupation: Ministry and trekking guide. Missions with C4C: First (although he has had connections with past missions to Nepal).

How long have you climbed? For many years. Type of climbing you do: Trekking.
Highlight of climbing career: I don't have any of climbing career, but I have so many experiences for trekking. I did so many passes more than 5,000 meters above.

How long have you been a Christian? Since 1991. Type of ministry you are blessed to serve in: Evangelism and leadership.

Favorite Scripture verse and why: John 14:6. “Jesus answered, 'I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.'” I like this verse because of my conversion.

Special “God moment” you’d like to share: I would like to share when I will be on the high places on the mountains and have felt close to God.

What does Climbing For Christ mean to you? It does lead exact path to the Lord and giving nourishment and lifting up to the spiritual side.

Tej Rokka

Nationality: Nepali. Occupation: Pastor/Minister of the Gospel. Missions with C4C: Second (he participated in Mission: Nepal 2011 — photographed, at right, with his wife, son, and Climbing For Christ member Kyle Austin).

How long have you climbed? At least 10 years. Type of climbing you do: Mountains and hills. Highlight of climbing career: When I visit a mountain church and go to preach the Gospel in Mountain area.

How long have you been a Christian? At least 20 years. Type of ministry you are blessed to serve in: Church planting, leadership training, disciple making, orphanage homes.

Favorite Scripture verse and why: John 3:16. “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” Because the world needs love and to know the true source of true love is God alone.

Special “God moment” you'd like to share: When I was hopeless and helpless as I was drawn into the water in the dark night God saved me.

What does Climbing For Christ mean to you? Christ centered and focused ministry that goes where others can't.

Dave Stoessel

Nationality: American. Occupation: Sales Arborist. Missions with C4C: This is my first mission trip of any kind.

How long have you climbed? Unless you count ladders or trees, I have never been a climber. Mission: Nepal will be my first true trekking experience, but I believe God will find a way to use me despite my lack of experience. Highlight of climbing career: Yet to be announced. I am excitedly, prayerfully looking forward to it! I will let you know on Feb. 4.

How long have you been a Christian? I grew up going to church and believing in God, however, my true realization of what Jesus Christ did for me came with a small group study of Rick Warren’s The Purpose Driven Life eight years ago, and I have been growing in His word ever since. Type of ministry you are blessed to serve in: I am blessed to work with the high school youth of my home church — Hope Lutheran Church in Greece, N.Y., USA.  These teens constantly amaze me, and I am certain that I learn more from them than they learn from me. I also serve as an usher at Hope and periodically use the horticultural talents God has given me to tend to the trees on our church campus.

Favorite Scripture verse and why: 2 Corinthians 4:16-18. “Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” This verse has popped up over and over in difficult times of my life. For me, it speaks to faith — we will have troubles on this earth, but these are temporary. The glory of heaven far outweighs them all! I am reminded to keep my eyes on Christ and his never changing promise, not on the world. Have faith in Him!!!

Special “God moment” you’d like to share: In April of 2008 my precious wife was diagnosed with breast cancer and underwent surgery in May. This was a time that our entire family could do nothing ourselves and could only rely on our faith and fall back into the arms of our Lord. During the surgery I continually prayed and read scripture regarding fear and faith over and over. Despite knowing and believing that God was with me, and despite the fact that my mother in law and a close family friend were physically with me, I was feeling very alone as the time with no news from the operating room grew longer. At the moment that I should have been hearing something from the doctors, my hospital pager went off, and when I looked to the nurses’ station, there stood Haidi Jones, our dear sweet 80 plus year old friend and “faith mentor.” She said that she had been praying at home for us and suddenly knew that she should come to the hospital despite the fact that she did not drive much anymore. She sat with me and prayed just the right words to re-focus my faith at that moment, and within minutes of her arrival, the first of the doctors came out with the news that all had gone as well as any of us could have hoped. I truly believe that the Lord sent an angel in the form of Haidi that day at exactly the time I needed.

What does Climbing For Christ mean to you? I am blessed to be involved in C4C, it is a unique ministry, both in where and who it serves. About a year ago, Pastor Larry Stojkovic encouraged his congregation to “get out of the stands and into the game.” To me, C4C is the response to Acts 1:8 — “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you, and you will be my witnesses to all of Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” So put me in Coach! To the ends of the earth we go!

Posted Dec. 29, 2011 / Updated Jan. 10, 2012

The Word

“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit...”
— Matthew 28:19 (NIV)

The Team

Brandy Everts and Marissa Gardiner, Canada; Megh Gurung and Pastor Tej Rokka, Nepal; and Gary Fallesen and Dave Stoessel, USA.


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