Staff

Pastor Todd Van Ryn
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Todd Van Ryn praises the Lord for his rich Christian heritage which included:

  • being born into a Christian home with parents who were at least 5th generation born-again believers
  • being raised in a missionary family that served the Lord for 10 years in Puerto Rico
  • developing a love and passion for studying and presenting the Word of God, beginning at age 16
  • serving at Bible Camps, Retreats and Conferences as a counselor, teacher, director and speaker for over 35 years, not only throughout the United States, but also in Canada, South America and the Caribbean
  • being called to the ministry of 5 Loaves & 2 Fish, with bookstores in Wisconsin and Illinois
  • being gifted by the Holy Spirit as a Pastor/Teacher
  • being called to serve both the English and Spanish speaking congregations at Merrill Bible Church.

 

 

Todd, along with his wife Sherry, have followed a mission statement the Lord gave them over 10 years ago: “Addicted to the service of the saints”, which was the descriptive used of the Stephanas family in     1 Corinthians 16. They strive – before the Lord, and with all His energy so powerfully working within them – to carry out this mission statement in every opportunity the Lord gives them.
Todd passionately seeks to present the Truth – the Word of God – plainly, and in a way that brings glory and honor to His God and Father, and His Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. He is dependent on the Holy Spirit, not only for the word that he speaks, but for the power and conviction to live it out in his personal life.  He is enthusiastically intent on helping others gain an appreciation for the word of God.
Besides his rich Christian heritage, God has helped shaped Todd’s life and provided life experiences from which he can draw illustrations. These include:

  • B.S. in Accounting from Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL
  • CPA, and 2 years experience with a public accounting firm
  • MBA in International Business from Concordia University, Mequon, WI
  • 17 ½ years with a fortune 500 company, in various capacities from Controller to Plant Manager at various facilities in the US and Caribbean
  • Certified Baker through the American Institute of Baking in Manhattan, KS
  • celebrating 27 years of marriage and raising 5 children, now all adults
  • active involvement in Good Tidings Publishers – a ministry focused on communicating the Word of God in a variety of formats: literature, radio, youth retreats
        
 

Youth Pastor Justin Novitski

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Justin has served as youth pastor at Merrill Bible Church since December 2013.

He received his bachelors degree in youth ministry from Northwestern College (now the University of Northwestern St. Paul) in 2005. Upon graduation he worked in retail banking and sales for 8 years while also volunteering in youth programs and worship team in the local church.  

Justin describes his vision for youth ministry as “igniting and encouraging a passion for Christ in the hearts of youth; in order that they might treasure Him above all things and be equipped to share Him with all people.”  

Justin and his wife, Amy, have 3 children – Cody, Sophia, and Jonathan. He enjoys distance running, buffalo wings, and Chicago professional sports.