Dad was born on May 10, 1933, near Grantsville in Calhoun County, West Virginia. “Johnny,” as he was later called, grew up on his family’s farm learning how to plow, plant, chop wood, milk cows, and gather maple syrup, along with a host of other farm-related activities at the end of the Great Depression.
From an early age, Dad loved music. As a young boy, he sat outside his uncle’s house and listened to two uncles and their friends play till late into the night. When he was in sixth grade, he and his older brother, Bill, and older sister, Pat, sold rose bud salve to buy their very first instrument—a guitar. Then Bill bought the body of a mandolin for a quarter, built a neck for the instrument, and traded Dad for his share of the guitar. Dad practiced his mandolin faithfully, but his first love truly was and still is the guitar.
When Dad was a teenager, his family moved to Akron and began attending the Akron Baptist Temple. After working for several years at Goodyear, Inc, and the BF Goodrich Co., he enrolled at Michigan State University to study Forestry. His one desire in life was to become a forest ranger, to live in the woods away from large cities and crowds. Nothing and no one would keep him from his goal.
No one but God.
In the fall of 1953 God began working in his heart—bringing conviction and revealing his need for Christ. So it was that after weeks of searching for the truth, Dad found himself in the office of Dr. Dallas Billington, who clearly saw that Dad was under deep conviction. Dr. Billington turned to John 3:16, and the Holy Spirit did the rest. Dad accepted Christ’s work on the Cross that day.
Not long after his salvation, he was called to preach. After almost two years in the Army, where he had been the assistant to the chaplain, he moved to Springfield, Missouri, to attend Baptist Bible College. While at BBC, he helped start a ministry to the military on Fort Leonardwood and also started a church in Waynesville, Missouri, pastoring there for a short time. Upon completion of Bible college, he moved to Long Island, New York, painting houses for a living and taking guitar lessons on the side. At 29, Dad was beginning to wonder if God did indeed have a mate for him. He began praying for God to send a wife—and soon.
Not long after this desperate prayer, a friend invited him to a Bible study where he was asked to play his guitar for background music. Seated next to him was Leanore Schaefer. It wasn’t long before they began dating and only seven months later, they were married on November 10, 1962. They moved to Waynesville, Missouri, where Dad returned to his pastorate for a time. During their stay in Missouri, he received his B.S. at Southwest Missouri State College in Industrial Arts with a minor in Music. The two oldest sisters, Julia and Rebekah, were born during their stay in Missouri.
They moved to Wheeling, West Virginia, in 1967 to pastor a mission church, and God blessed by growing the church. Their daughters Jennifer, Deborah, and Sharon were born during the eight years they spent in Wheeling.
In October 1975, Dad took a pastorate at the Old Church in Lynbrook, New York. During the year they lived in Lynbrook, he sensed the Lord leading him to a new adventure. By this time, the family had grown to eight with the arrival of their sixth daughter, Joanna. This adventure was unlike any they had known up to that point—a ministry of evangelism.
On a sunny day in September 1976, they packed up their six daughters and all of their belongings into a 1948 Oneida bus and a step van. Pat Cassidy, an extra traveler who helped with the music, drama, and puppet ministry, came along for the ride. They had two meetings on the schedule when the bus and van pulled out. Their first stop, Vermont; the second stop, the Blue Ridge mountains of Virginia.
In the early days the ministry included preaching, chalk-talk, puppet shows, ventriloquism, singing, dramas, skits, and VBS programs. As the ministry grew, the family grew, adding two more daughters and two sons.
For almost forty years, Dad and Mom have served the Lord in evangelism across the fifty States and in seven other countries. All ten of us kids have moved on to other ministries, and seven have married and have families of their own.
In 2000, Dad and Mom moved to Tunnelton, West Virginia, to build a log home. They still travel to meetings as the Lord opens doors. When they are home, they help in a children’s class at their home church (Independent Baptist Church in Kingwood, West Virginia).
Dad’s passion for music still drives him, and at any time of the day you might find him playing his guitar, or banjo, or mandolin—or maybe his harmonica.
Mom never thought she would ever travel or see any other part of the country except the one in which she was raised: Bellerose in the borough of Queens, New York City. She thought she’d be living in the same house forever, the one she had lived in for 23 years.
“The Lord must have been laughing at me,” she says today.
Leanore Janet Schaefer was born on May 24, 1939, in the borough of Brooklyn. Lee (as she became known in her teenage years) was a brown-haired, brown-eyed ball of energy. She constantly kept her parents on their toes.
When she was four, she heard the Gospel clearly presented at a Bible club held in a library in Elmont. She distinctly remembers the conviction she felt that day, knowing she had been sinning “at least since she was three” and wondering “if God could forgive her sins” if she waited until she was five to be saved. A Bible club worker dealt with her and Leanore received the Lord as her Savior that day.
She began singing on the radio at a very young age, standing on a chair to reach the microphone. She also played the violin and clarinet. In grade school, she became active in Good News clubs which she held at her house during the school year. And as a teenager, Mom was active in reaching out to the 6,000 students at PS #33 in Jamaica. She and a friend would stand at the door of their school and pass out tracts as fast as they could to the students arriving for the day. She was a faithful member of a HI-BA Club (“High School Born Again” Club).
After graduating from high school in 1957, Mom enrolled at the West Suburban Nursing School in Oak Park, Illinois. She enjoyed her studies and especially taking Bible classes from the professors at Wheaton College who came to teach at West Suburban. After a year and eight months of nursing school, Mom was told she would not make a good nurse; she should go home and get married. Though she had to repeat some of her work, in 1961 she finished her nursing degree in New York City. She took a job at Booth Memorial Hospital in Flushing, then transferred to Long Island Jewish Hospital.
Her great love for children and nursing caused her to decide to go to Papua New Guinea as a missionary nurse. She had been accepted by a mission board in 1962 and had agreed to work at Camp Joy in upstate New York for the summer as the camp nurse. But the Lord would not give her peace about going, and she told the camp directors she could not come. They insisted she had a boyfriend, but she told them firmly that she did not.
Not long after she canceled her plans to work at Camp Joy, she met John Marshall at a Bible study held at a friend’s house. Unimpressed at first, she soon changed her mind when they began dating in July. By August they were engaged and they married on November 10, 1962. The camp directors at Camp Joy never believed her that she had not had a boyfriend.
For the next fourteen years, Dad pastored in three states—from Missouri to West Virginia to New York. When the Lord called Dad into full-time evangelism in 1976, it did not take long for Mom to say goodbye to their three-story parsonage on Long Island.
For almost forty years, Mom has encouraged hundreds of ladies through ladies meetings, her teaching sessions, and the prayer club she started in 1992 for families with five or more children called “Blessed with 5 and Still Alive.” Over the years she has helped more than fifty other young people who came to travel with our family for one reason or another.
Mom is a grandma to forty-one grandchildren and three (almost four) great-grandchildren. She enjoys knitting, crocheting, playing music, scolding her dachshund Brickel, and talking to her family via her new cell phone.
Pete & Julia Montoro
We live in Astoria, New York, where Pete pastors the Open Door Bible Baptist Church. Called “The Miracle on 35th Street”, Open Door has been in existence for 24 years, meeting in a renovated Jewish synagogue which our church purchased in 1996. Iglesia Bautista Internacional, pastored by Bro. Jose Saravia, meets in the basement of the church.
Open Door Bible Baptist Church has planted two other churches in New York City. The first church plant was Cornerstone Bible Baptist Church in Fleischmanns, NY, in 2008. The second church plant was the Union Baptist Church in 2015 in Greenpoint, pastored by Bro. Mike Newburger. Currently, we are raising money to renovate an historic Baptist church where the members of Union Baptist Church can meet. You can read about this incredible adventure here.
Julia began writing songs in the 1980s and has continued to use her gift of song writing for the Lord’s glory. You can find sheet music for many of her songs at our website. Click the “Sheet Music” tab.
We have twelve children: Peter (married to Ashley; two children: Peter and Chloe); Sarah (married to Chad Hainline; one child: Pamela), Andrew, Rachel (engaged to Leland Hale), Hannah, Stephen, Deborah, Ruthann, Phillip, Esther, Joseph, and Jason. Peter, Sarah, and Andrew are alumni of Heartland Baptist Bible College in Oklahoma City, OK; Rachel graduates May 2016; Hannah and Stephen are currently students; and Deborah will soon follow in their footsteps.
Bob & Becky Mach
We have been serving in the Ivory Coast, West Africa since 1995. The Lord gave us the privilege of establishing an Independent Baptist Church in Anyama during our first term and a half. This church is now pastored by a national pastor who is supporting 6 other missionaries and caring for orphans.
In 2000, the Lord moved us to Bingerville where we began planting ’L’Eglise Baptiste Fondamentale de Bingerville (Fundamental Baptist Church of Bingerville). The Lord has opened doors through this work to begin a literacy ministry; a sports ministries to reach out to the youth of Bingerville; and a medical ministry to villages that resulted in Bible studies in several villages and a new church plant in the north of the Ivory Coast. We love working with the Ivorians and seeing God change lives.
We have four children. Bob, Jr. is completing his Masters in Educational Leadership in order to return to the Ivory Coast and help his Dad open a new Bible College and Seminary. Marylyn is currently studying nursing at Pensacola Christian College and plans to continue on to get a degree as a Physician’s Assistant. She would love to help in the medical ministry in some capacity in the Ivory Coast. Morganne and Luc are still on the field with us, bringing much joy and fun to the journey.
Dan & Jennifer Martin
Our journey of faith has most recently led us to Charlotte, North Carolina, where Dan is a part of the Internet Evangelism Team at the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. We moved to North Carolina in June of 2013 and Dan immediately began as National Field Manager of hundreds of English and Spanish volunteers. These volunteers coach and disciple thousands who come to the Peace with God website daily. Jennifer is supporting the BGEA internet evangelism team as a Discipleship Coach. She teaches piano to more than twenty students God has blessed her with and has a heart for the ESL (English as a Second Language) ministry at our church.
We have three daughters: Ashley, Melissa, and Heather. Ashley graduated from Cedarville University in December of 2015 with a degree in Communications and works full-time as an Event Coordinator for Student Life Ministries in Birmingham, AL. Melissa is on point to graduate in May of 2017 from Cedarville University with a music degree. Her heart is to use music as a means to worship God and minister to His church. Heather is still at home and looks forward to getting two years of college completed before heading to Cedarville University to finish her degree.
We covet your prayers that God’s fame would be spread through each one of us in the months and years to come.
Brad & Deborah Wells
After nearly 17 years of ministry in Papua New Guinea, God called us to Washington, DC. We arrived on July 14, 2014 with nine suitcases, two guitars, and a computer. Our lives have been one miracle after another for the past nearly two years. God allowed us to start the GraceWay Baptist Church of Capitol Hill in January of 2015. We meet in a community arts center nine blocks from the Capitol. We are currently ministering to Marines, residents, staff, and interns. The Lord continues to open doors giving us favor and influence in amazing, God-appointed ways.
Our children are growing up. Marshall is now attending Bible school in Boise, Idaho as well as working as a graphic design intern with Smart Story, Inc. The six at home had the opportunity to play organized sports for the first time with a local Christian school this year. They enjoyed the experience immensely. Our girls are babysitting for a Congresswoman and working as interns. Just think—from trekking through the jungles in the South Pacific to giving tours of the Capitol! What an amazing thrill this life of following God is!
Funny story: on her first tour, our daughter, Johanna, could not remember the English word for “bury”. She said the Pidgin equivalent, “Congress wanted to “plant” George Washington here, but he wanted to be “planted” at his home in Mt. Vernon.”
Ted & Sharon Monsour
We have been living in the Four Corners area of Colorado for six years. Ted continues to work in the financial world and Sharon keeps the home fires burning. We enjoy serving at Frontier Baptist Church in many areas including music, a Sunday school class, and the nursing home ministry.
During our time in Colorado we have added four additional children to our family. We now have seven: Teddy, Emeline, Veronica, Jesse, Leanore, Lois, and Winnie.
Over the past five years, I have taken several trips to the Philippines, and each trip confirms more and more the burden and desire I have to serve in that country. I will be serving alongside Bro. and Mrs. Eddie Galyean in Urdaneta City, Pangasinan, on the island of Luzon.
In addition to helping in their Christian school and teaching private music lessons, I will have a chance to be involved in teaching in the public schools and extensions classes. I will also teach a teen girls Sunday school class and help with the music ministry.
I return to the Philippines in June 2016 and ask for your prayers as I labor with the Galyeans to see souls saved.
Jonathan & Jessica Marshall
We have lived in Toledo, Ohio since 2004. Jon works at Hope Baptist Church as an assistant pastor. Jessica keeps busy researching how to keep our family healthy.
John, Nate, and Ben love to play basketball and wrestle all over their rooms. Leanne and Adrianna enjoy cooking, and redecorating their room fairly often.
In the summer of 2014, I interned at The Global Baptist Times at Bible Baptist Church in Stillwater, Oklahoma. I thought I was only fulfilling requirements toward a Bachelors in English with a concentration in professional writing, but God had other plans. After graduating in 2015 from Pensacola Christian College, I moved back to Stillwater.
Currently, I work full time at Oklahoma State University and part time at The Global Baptist Times as a writer and editor. My home church is Bible Baptist Church, and like any good Marshall, I enjoy being a part of the music ministry. I love living in the Wild West and learning to drink coffee cowboy style (black, no sugar or cream).
One of my passions—on a growing list that includes books and coffee—is to help other Christians produce quality writing that glorifies the Lord and draws people to Him.
Matt & Julie Marshall
- Julie is an active piano teacher with 19 students
- The boys are busy in school, church, and love to sing and play
- Tim is playing french horn
- Zac is quickly growing as a piano player
- Caden is learning piano and loves to sing