John & Stasia Nielsen have served in full-time missions since 1984, serving in Hawaii (1985-86), Mexico City (summers of ’86 and ’87), Thailand, the Philippines and Hong Kong (1988-89) and Australia (1990-94). They took teams to the Barcelona Olympic outreach in ’92, and to Mexico City and Guadalajara in ’93, ’94 and ’95. While on sabbatical they led a group on week-long outreaches in Mexico in ’96, ’97 and ’98. They directed a short term mission program in the Yucatan Peninsula the summers of ’99 and 2000. In early 2001, they moved to Chapala, Mexico (located in the mountains 30 miles from Guadalajara) to launch Eagle Nest Mission Treks.
John is a “PK”, and attended Berean Bible College in San Diego right out of high school. He served as youth pastor and minister of evangelism from 1976 -1984, was ordained to the ministry in 1979, and received his call to missions at a Keith Green concert in 1982. Two years later he married Stasia, and together they stepped out on the mission field. Their first four of daughters were born to them while serving in missions, and their fifth daughter and only son were born while on sabbatical in the United States. Brittany was born on the Big Island of Hawaii (January ’86), Chelsey was born in Hong Kong (January ’90), Lauren was born in Sydney, Australia (December ’91) and Destiny came special delivery in Clarksville, Tennessee (November ’99). Ella (March ’05) and Noah (March ’06) were born in Maryland.
Stasia is a mother-par-excellence, gifted in hospitality, mercy ministry and mentoring. John is a teaching evangelist with a heart for young people, a love for God’s Word and a passion for leadership development. Both John and Stasia are pastoral and relational in their ministry approach.
Throughout their 25+ years in missions, they have focused on championing young people. In Australia they directed a ministry that reached out in hundreds of public schools and universities throughout the nation, with large group assemblies featuring drama evangelism and relevant testimonies, with discussion forums and with Christian education classes. While in Hong Kong, John served as an associate pastor for the English speaking Chinese congregation at Kowloon Tong Alliance Church on the weekends while helping pioneer a campus ministry during the week. Over the years the Nielsens have focused more and more on leadership development in their ministry as they have understood the importance of multiplication as a missions strategy.
Mexico was the Nielsen’s first assignment on foreign soil, and has always held a special place in their hearts. Along with hosting short term mission teams year round, Stasia serves as the director of a community center in Tepehua, a needy barrio in the Chapala area that focuses on assisting needy families, single mothers and children. John is currently the CIO of Justice For Youth, an organization that exists to bring hope to children and youth around the world victimized by human trafficking, poverty, homelessness and HIV/AIDS or other life threatening diseases.