Both Jonathan and Denielle grew up in Christian homes where their parents taught them about Jesus Christ, salvation and ministry. Jonathan had the privilege of spending four years of his life in Cote d’Ivoire, West Africa when his family served with New Tribes Mission. God began to prepare Jon and Denielle’s hearts for overseas missions while they attended Cornerstone Bible Institute in Hot Springs, South Dakota.
Jonathan and Denielle arrived in Brazil at the end of 2008 with their oldest daughter ElliAnna. After moving to South Brazil in 2009 and finishing language school, they helped in church plants in Campo Bom and Estância Velha until the end of 2015. Carter and Noella were both born in Rio Grande do Sul.
Jonathan and Denielle now work in the Florianopolis area of Santa Catarina in South Brazil. They moved into the city to begin church planting in January of 2016. The Florianopolis metropolitan area has a population of 1 million people. Like most Brazilian cities, there are churches on almost every street but strikingly few that are faithfully preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The Johnsons serve with the Brazil Gospel Fellowship in planting the Igreja Biblica Cambirela in Palhoça, the third largest city in the Florianopolis metroplex.
Evangelistic Bible studies, planning and coordinating church events, preaching, developing relationships, discipleship, teaching and training make up their ministry portfolio. During a typical ministry week they meet to disciple various couples and individuals, teach the Bible in homes and at church, work with youth, provide training in teaching and music ministry, among other duties. They share, “ElliAnna, Carter, and Noella are our greatest responsibility and provide our greatest joys and challenges. We understand that God has given us our children to be our ministry and to be involved in our ministry.”