Elyas 2018

ELYAS, Rachel


Growing up in West Africa until her teen years, missions was already a part of Rachel’s life when her family returned to Calgary. Learning about the need for Bible translation while studying at Bible college led Rachel to get her master’s degree in linguistics and exegesis. After joining Wycliffe’s staff in 2006, she was assigned two years later to a Bible translation project in Tanzania, East Africa.  

While in Tanzania, she met her husband, Shady, who was working as an accountant at a clinic run by the Egyptian Orthodox Church. They were married in 2012 and moved to Toronto, Ont. so Shady could continue his studies in accounting. Rachel continued working with Wycliffe in a variety of roles.

After one year in Toronto, they moved back to Calgary, where Rachel served as an applications adviser in the Wycliffe office. Being close to her family was an added benefit as two children joined their family.

Although Rachel loved working with people applying to Wycliffe, in the fall of 2016 she felt God leading her into a new role in the area of partnership development. Having gained and lost ministry partners throughout her time with Wycliffe, she knew the struggles and joys involved in building a team of prayer and financial partners. Each member must have their own team of partners and without this team, members cannot fulfil their roles in bringing the Scripture to people in their own languages. Rachel began to recognize that some colleagues were struggling, even to the point of leaving Wycliffe, because they didn’t have a full team of partners. That prompted her to accept the role of director of partnership development, in order to equip and support all Wycliffe Canada staff as they build their team of partners.

She loves walking with people in their journeys, coaching and giving them tools to build their team of partners. From workshops to training more coaches, Rachel is seeing God at work in the lives of Wycliffe staff. The most exciting moment is when someone is able to return to their work, whether overseas or in Canada, with a strong team behind them.