It was in the 1960’s that Mark and Marlene were first introduced to the work of Wycliffe Bible Translators. Mark’s parents moved to Waxhaw, North Carolina in 1969, to volunteer at JAARS (Wycliffe’s technical training and support centre). As a college student with free afternoons, Mark worked part time in the JAARS print shop, learning the ins-and-outs of printing from a veteran missionary. Not only did he gain a skill, but he was inspired by the many stories of missionaries in training to serve around the world.
Marlene was in grade four when her parents, an aircraft mechanic and a secretary, joined Wycliffe in 1964 to serve in aviation, first at the JAARS centre and later in Quito, Ecuador, where she graduated from high school. Later in life, while reading stories of Wycliffe missionaries and the life transforming impact of Bible translation, a desire was sparked in her to be personally involved.
After owning and operating a commercial print shop for 10 years, Mark and Marlene sold the business and joined Wycliffe in 1985. The following year, they began their first assignment as manager of the print shop for Wycliffe Canada in Calgary. In January 1993, they travelled to Ghana, West Africa to work with the Ghana Institute of Linguistics, Literacy and Bible Translation. Mark gave managerial oversight to the print shop and training to the Ghanaian staff on a large single colour press. The family returned to Calgary in 1996, where Mark returned to Wycliffe Canada’s print shop.
Following 20 years of home schooling their six children, Marlene began work in the Calgary office in the spring of 2008. She assisted in mobilizing passionate young adults by doing student follow-up in Wycliffe Canada’s NextGen Ministries, later called the National Mobilization Team. In January of 2017, Marlene wrapped up her work with the Mobilization Team and moved to the marketing and communications department. Although her title is Communications Project Assistant, her role is not yet defined, as she focuses on regaining 10 per cent of their needed financial support.
Together, their work with Wycliffe in the communications department helps encourage Bible-believing Christians in Canada towards a deeper awareness of and involvement in God’s work through Bible translation, so that the remaining minority language groups worldwide can understand God’s Word in a language that speaks to their heart—their own mother tongue.