I am all of these, and less: Christian, husband, father, grandfather, pastor, theologian. I was born and raised in Council Bluffs, Iowa (Abraham Lincoln High School, 1974, Iowa Western Community College, summer 1975); Attended Manhattan Christian College, Manhattan, Kansas, and Kansas State University. I majored in Bible-Missions, graduating in 1978 with a B.Sci. At KSU I studied journalism, worked on KSDB radio, and played very second violin in the K-State symphony. I began preaching at the Christian Church in Morrowville, Kansas, at a way to young age. But it was there that I met Shari Portenier! We were married November 20th, 1977.
While I attended graduate school at Lincoln Christian Seminary (now univeristy), we lived in Literberry, Illinois (sad experience), and in Cowden, Illinois (great experience). I eventually graduated with an M.Div. and an M.A. I am currently enrolled in the PhD programme at South African Theological Seminary.
In Illinois, our daughters Corrie was born in 1980, and Lindi in 1983. Elise was born in 1988, in Hamilton, Ontario. We immigrated to Canada in 1986, and became citizens in 1992 (Elise being a citizen here by birth).
We have seven grandchildren, which only seems like “many,” once you check out the birthdates: Corrie’s children: Reuben, November 30, 2002; his brother Zeke, November 15, 2003; Lotte, October 10, 2011. Lindi’s children: Eva, January 2, 2008; Judah, February 16, 2010; Joash, September 28, 2012; Adelaide, September 28, 2012. Elise’s children: Edith, August 12, 2011; Toby, August 12, 2011. So if you look at the dates, Corrie had two kids within 12 months, and with her third, plus the twins, and twins again in 2012, we have had added five grandchildren since August 2011! I’ll have to update this again in May, when Elise’s third shows up!