As part of our ‘Riverside Story’ blog post series, this post will focus on a mission that Riverside is helping to facilitate here in Birmingham, the UK and around the world; supporting our vision to bring LIFE to every generation in every community. This month we are catching up with Diane & Bryan.
Diane and Bryan met while serving as missionaries in Zambia Africa, serving for a total of 23 years and raising three children (Toby, Ross & Charis). Three years ago, the educational needs of their children necessitated a move to the USA where Bryan is from. Bryan is a missionary pilot and is currently serving a ministry based in Alaska, called Missionary Aviation Repair Centre (MARC)
During the summer months the ministry flies hundreds of children from remote villages into Bible camps. The kids that attend these camps live very isolated lives in communities of 50 to 500 people. Often these communities do not have a Church and are suffering from high incidence of abuse, alcoholism, drug abuse, depression, and the long dark winters. So, Bible camp is an amazing opportunity to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the potential of a better life. 82% of these communities live off the road system with Aircraft being the only option for travel. Bryan is the development manager and a pilot with MARC, spending much of his time photographing the work of the mission. You can see many of the videos he has made for the mission by clicking the button below:
For the past three summers the entire family has lived at a Bible camp and helped serve in any way needed. Specifically, Diane has been the camp nurse, Bryan the ‘fix it’ man, and the kids have been general helpers, and counsellors.
The winters are spent in Tucson Arizona, Bryan’s hometown. Toby the oldest is now in his second year of university, Ross is in his last year of High School and Charis in her second year of High School. Bryan travels to Alaska from time to time through the winter for specific assignments, working remotely the rest of the time on primary computer-based work for the mission.
The primary fruit we see from this ministry are the kids that accept Christ as their Saviour, as well as discipleship opportunities through the Bible Camp ministries. In addition, the mission helps maintain the aircraft of many flying pastors that serve in the villages that have no permanent church. Many supplies are transported all winter, as well as suicide prevention teams, and many other Christian ministries that need aviation transport. Alaska is vast and beautiful but needs the Gospel just like the rest of the world.
We are so thankful for you years of support for our family and our ministry in Africa and now Alaska.
Bryan, Diane, Toby, Ross and Charis Wilson
To find out more about the Missionary Aviation Repair Centre you can visit their webisite.