Friday, September 19, 2008

Missionary Spotlight: Bill and Marion Baldwin - Greece

Bill and Marion work with Greater Europe Mission in Greece.

Bill was born in St. Louis, Missouri and moved to Houston, Texas when he was 15. In college his room-mate invited him to church and there he made a public confession of his faith. After college, with a BS in Religion he attended Moody Bible Institute for one year and then Dallas Seminary where he received his MTh. While at seminary he met Bob Evans, founder of Greater Europe Mission and felt that GEM's thrust of starting Bible Colleges all over Europe was a wise idea. For some reason God placed Greece on Bill’s heart. GEM expected all candidates to attend Missionary Internship, a 7-month training program for would-be missionaries in Detroit, which is where Bill & Marion met.
Marion was born in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. She graduated from Toronto Bible College and then became a registered nurse before going to Missionary Internship.
Bill served as youth pastor at West Chicago Bible church for one year after their marriage and then a year later, having raised their support Bill & Marion left for Greece with a very simple job description: start a Bible Institute. So....that's what they did....and therein lies a LONG story of learning a language, gaining the trust of the Greek evangelicals, finding a 'home' for the Greek Bible Institute, finding teachers and students and the money to pay for it all....GOD HAS BEEN FAITHFUL. Bill has taught all the Theology courses at the Bible college, Marion used to teach a course to young women, but now does the book-keeping for the college for Greater Europe Mission.
Today the director of the college is their son Jeff. The graduates are pastors of the majority of the Greek Evangelical churches in Greece. They head up most para-church organizations in Greece, and are also serving as missionaries.
Bill and Marion’s four children have all married Greeks and 2 of them are also missionaries with GEM in Greece. Thank God they are all committed Christians, married to people from committed Christian homes. They also have 11 grand-children.
Bill & Marion first heard of First Presbyterian church in Jackson, Mississippi when their then pastor, Don Patterson, asked Bill to lead a tour group he was bringing to Greece. Bill and Marion got a burden for Greece and even sent Van and Alice Rusling to Greece to work with the GEM team for a few years. Van actually taught Marion her job!
Please pray for Bill and Marion as they serve in Greece.