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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.





Statement of Faith

We teach that the Bible is God-breathed and without error.

We teach that God is the One True God who has existed eternally and has revealed Himself to man in three Persons:
- God the Father,
- God the Son – Jesus Christ, and
- God the Holy Spirit.

These three are one God, having precisely the same attributes, power and glory.

We teach Jesus Christ to be the sinless Son of God, who was conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary, in order to make God known to us and redeem sinful man.

We teach that He accomplished our redemption through His death on the cross as a substitute sacrifice.

We teach that our redemption is made sure to us by His literal, physical resurrection from the dead.

We teach that man was created in the image and likeness of God, and that in Adam’s sin the entire human race fell, and in that sense are lost, alienated from God and unable in and of ourselves to remedy our lost condition.

We teach that salvation is the free gift of God brought to man by God’s grace and received by personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, whose precious blood was shed on the cross of Calvary for the forgiveness of our sins.

We teach that the Church is an elect company of believers, baptized by the Holy Spirit into one body, and is the espoused bride of Christ.

We teach that the local church is the arena God designed where believers are equipped for the work of the ministry, the building up of the body of Christ (Eph. 4:11-12), until each one is presented complete in Christ.

Its mission is to witness concerning its Head, Jesus Christ, by preaching the gospel, beginning with its local community and extending to the ends of the earth.

“Him we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone mature in Christ.” (Colossians 1:28 ESV)

About Us

We are a Bible-teaching church who seek to be all God wants us to be a church among whom there are no needy people. (Acts 4:34)

We seek to:

Glorify God in worship
Give ourselves to God in service
Go into the world to share the gospel
Gather those saved into the church
Grow spiritually-mature believers