Sofia Alvarez - Colombia
Sofia was born and raised in Mexico City where she studied to become a lawyer. At 25 she had a job offer in New York City and made the city her home for almost 20 years. In 2010, while working in one of the leading global business law firms, she surrendered her life to Christ and He began to transform her heart. She started attending Times Square Church, served in the Raven Ministry, a feeding ministry to the homeless, traveled to various parts of the world on short-term mission trips and became an active volunteer for TSC Missions.
In 2015 the Lord put it in her heart to prepare for long-term missions. She began sharing her heart with the team in Medellin, Colombia at Ciudad Refugio, and they welcomed her as a long-term missionary.
She works with the Foundation’s accounting and legal needs as well as marketing, fundraising, project development, the hospitality ministry and with the women’s program.
Evelyn Badillo-Cordero - Puerto Rico
Evelyn Badillo-Cordero serves as a missionary through consulting, teaching and training church and ministry leaders in the areas of counseling and mental health issues. She has served in this capacity in Africa, the Caribbean, and New York since 2009. The counseling trainings are based on Biblical principles and are tailored to meet the emotional needs of those being served.
Evelyn is currently based in Puerto Rico where she also serves in a ministry that works with children from impoverished areas by counseling through the arts. In addition, she shares God’s Word in churches throughout the island and continues to support various overseas missions projects as a counseling consultant.
Ilya and Janet Bantseev - Russia
Ilya Bantseev is the pastor of a growing church which he and his wife, Janet, founded in his home city of Novokuznetsk, Russia in 1993. With a congregation of approximately 1200 people, they currently minister in prisons, orphanages, and to people with life-controlling problems and addictions.
Ilya and Janet also help organize ministry and missionary teams to plant churches throughout Siberia as well as share the Gospel with professional groups such as doctors, athletes, police, etc. One of the most fruitful ministries is the Teen Challenge Siberia program called “The Source of Life.” Many have come to Christ and have been set free from heroin through this program.
Tim and Sarah Buxton - Iraq
In 2005, Tim, at 23 years of age and with suitcase in hand, pursued his dreams and moved from Australia to New York City to work at Times Square Church as the Short-term Mission Coordinator. Eight years later and after dozens of mission trips spanning seven continents, he now finds himself embarking on quite a different adventure – a journey to the mountains of Northern Iraq. This time his wife of 5 years, Sarah, will be by his side, along with their daughter, Elliana; son, Charlie; and the new addition Lilian (born in March, 2014). I think it’s safe to say he will need a few more suitcases!
Both Sarah and Tim have missions running through their veins. As a young girl, Sarah’s family served with YWAM in Europe and then after graduating from Bible College, she moved to South Africa for 2 years to work with Doctors for Life, caring for orphans impacted by the Sub-Saharan AIDS crisis. Meanwhile, Tim’s parents were serving as missionaries to the largely unreached Sunda people of Indonesia where he was born in Bandung. Now together as a family, God has called them to live and work amongst the Kurds, a people who for centuries have experienced great suffering and have known very little witness of the Gospel.
Douglas Calvano - Colombia
Douglas Calvano is president of Ciudad Refugio and founding pastor of Casa Refugio Church in Medellin, Colombia. Sent out as a missionary from TSC in 1993 with a one-way ticket to Colombia, Douglas has since spent his life serving those in need on the inner-city streets of Medellin.
With a heart for the poor and addicted, and a passion for the Word of God, Douglas teaches, preaches, and counsels those in the care of the ministry. He also trains pastors and leaders in developing holistic programs to address the needs of those in their communities. A natural visionary, Douglas continues to dream and develop new programs to care for those in need. To date, Ciudad Refugio and Casa Refugio have impacted the lives of more than 12,000 individuals.
Douglas’s wife Marilu and their two children are an integral part of the ministry. Marilu leads the praise and worship ministry and the church’s discipleship programs. Juan Marcos and Maria Luisa follow closely in their parents’ footsteps and are already serving in many of the ministry’s programs and outreaches.
Diana Collymore - Chicago
Diana Collymore is on a mission to “turn the world upside down” (Acts 17:6) through the college campus. In her work with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, she creates interactive and dynamic training materials, plans special events and conferences, and serves as a personal mentor in order to mobilize college students to participate in God’s global mission. Her specialty is partnering with people from a variety of ministries to create a space where young men and women can have a personal encounter with God that transforms them into lifelong, holistic disciples of Jesus.
Diana is a New York-born-and-raised, second-generation Barbadian who began a cross-cultural journey in the midwest in 2005. She currently lives in Madison, Wisconsin, where she has immersed herself in the culture and community and enjoys partnering with local churches to bring gospel renewal to surrounding neighborhoods. She is excited to have an up-close view of God’s transforming work in Madison.
Harry and Margaret Dietrich - Colombia
Harry and Margaret Dietrich are serving with the Ciudad Refugio in Medellin, Colombia. They are involved in training the men and women in the center’s one-year restoration program (similar to Teen Challenge) as well as the men of the homeless shelter. Harry ministers in the church primarily through preaching, teaching, counseling and training. In addition to working with the women, Margaret helps coordinate the children’s ministry and a VBS-style program in the neighborhood.
Their two children, Ashleigh and Ashira (who are in 9th and 7th grades, respectively) are involved in many aspects of the church ministries as well. Ashira often helps with translation from English to Spanish for her mom and dad.
The family has been serving full-time with Ciudad Refugio since 2008.
Serge and Lesya Landik - Ukraine
Serge and Lesya Landik are currently serving in Transcarpathia, Western Ukraine. Their primary focus is to reach out to orphans and/or assist local ministries that do the same. However, they are also heavily involved in youth work at a local church through sharing the Word, organizing “Worship and Waiting” nights for young people, and counseling young couples before marriage. Serge often assists different local ministries with simultaneous translation.
The Landiks have been in the Ukraine since 2010. In 2011, they moved to their current location, Mukachevo, to help at the Eunice Brown Home for Children. They have two children—Nadine (age 2) and Avraam (age 7), who is homeschooled.
Marshall Family - Central Asia
The Marshalls both worked as civil engineers for 10 years for a large company in NJ. In 2007 they got married at TSC, and near the end of 2009 left their cozy jobs to serve in Central Asia.
The journey started 6 years earlier when they traveled there with a team from TSC, after which the Lord called them back. They now lead a team for a Christian NGO that helps people rebuild their lives through education, community development, and relief work. Over the past 4 years, they have been designing water systems that provide clean water to remote villages, helping build latrines and providing health and hygiene classes in areas where people have never had a bar of soap or clean water.
The Marshalls also help oversee one of the ChildCry projects that provide food to a local boys’ orphanage. In 2011, they gave birth to their first son, and in 2015 they had a daughter. Daily they continue to flood the area with prayer and spread His joy to many who have only known war and bloodshed.
Jacqueline Meihsner - Kosovo
Jacqueline Meihsner has been serving as a missionary in Kosova since 1999 following the war that took the lives of nearly 10,000 ethnic Albanians. The first six years of her service were spent mothering 5 orphans and supporting the local church.
Currently she works with children and youth in unreached areas teaching English and sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ. She ministers under the Church of the Lord Jesus in Gjakove. She leads a weekly Bible study and is a partner of Please Pass the Bread whose mission is to share the love of Christ by feeding hungry children and developing income generating projects that will sustain families in the future.
Luis and Myranda Morales - Zambia
Luis and Myranda Morales have lived in Lusaka for six years, working with homeless children. They began a ministry called “Streetwise Outreach” with the goal of reaching children on the streets and helping to ease them into the various rehabilitation programs and orphanages around the city. They are also in the process of starting a trade school called “Streetwise Craft Co” where they will teach various artistic and carpentry skills while incorporating discipleship and life-skills training. Luis and Myranda have three daughters—Amira, Hannah, and Brooklyn.
Ivan Rios - Puerto Rico
Ivan Rios recently planted a church in La Perla—a slum area long known as a retail drug bazaar in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He is also involved in several other ministries in San Juan including a feeding, clothing, and counseling program called “Puente De Amor” (Bridge of Love), a weekly Bible study, a homeless ministry called “Las Duchas” (the showers), a Saturday children’s program, and a weekly soup and prayer outreach within the community. Ivan has been in Puerto Rico for three years.
Alice Sibomana - Burundi
In 1994, due to the ethnic conflict that cost the lives of many loved ones, Alice Sibomana left Burundi and sought asylum in the U.S. She began working in the missions department at Times Square Church in 2002 and continued there for 10 years. In 2012, she felt it was time to return home to serve God’s people in Burundi.
That same year, Alice and her mother, Therese Sibomana, founded Ziga Foundation. Birthed after years of outreaches to children on the streets as well as those in deaf communities, the foundation currently runs a feeding program and provides housing for former street kids. Alice is involved in the administration of the foundation, Bible studies, training, teaching, tutoring and counseling.
Rebekah Uribe - Colombia
Rebekah Uribe has served with Ciudad Refugio in Medellin, Colombia since 2012. She is responsible for training, counseling and discipling women in the center’s one-year restoration program. Rebekah is also responsible for the development of special projects and partnerships including work initiatives with local businesses, skills-development programs, and missions projects in various locations.
Rebekah is currently working on a Doctorate of Ministry degree focusing on leadership development and spiritual formation in at-risk communities. With a passion for building and a deep burden to see individuals experience freedom in Christ, Rebekah has found a home within the diverse ministries and missions of Ciudad Refugio.
Dr Malyn Vilar - Philippines
Malyn is a missionary physician who has been serving in the Philippines since 2000. She currently ministers under Christ the Living Word Church (CLWC) in Mandaluyong City as well as a Christian non-government organization, Care Channels, Inc. (CCI) in Quezon City. She is following God’s heart to love the poor and impact their lives as she oversees various programs such as medical clinics, community health education, feeding, and education sponsorship and income-generating projects.
Malyn is part of the pastoral team in CLWC where she preaches, teaches and trains women and children in Christ-centered living. She is also on the leadership team in CCI, which partners with 45 churches in poor communities to help them reach out to their residents holistically.
Andrew and Lymarie Wieber - Guatemala
Andrew and Lymarie have spent several years serving in ministry at Times Square Church, and have served as part of many mission teams as well. In early 2013, they both felt the call of God to become full-time missionaries, and they made the decision to go, together, after getting married in the Spring of 2014.
They have served in Guatemala since the Fall of 2014, and have teamed up with the Guatemalan ministry of Salud Que Transforma, which is headed up by Guatemalan Doctor/Pastor Erick Estrada, and his wife Cynthia. There, a fully functional medical clinic is operated 24/7, which provides low-cost affordable medical care to the nearby poor and impoverished communities. In addition, community development programs are in place which include weekly medical outreaches, general health/medical training classes, a certified nursing school, a feeding program for the local school children, a clean water bottling program, a new church plant… and much more!