Rusty and Brenda Carney are currently on stateside assignment and traveling primarily in Illinois and Oklahoma to share how God has worked through them during the last term in Bihoro in eastern Hokkaido, Japan. The couple has a passion to see many Japanese come to know Christ through Japanese Christians being strengthened, discipled, and empowered to share their faith. The family hopes to return to Japan in January 2019.
Rusty, son of Randy and Rhonda Carney, was saved at the age of four in Thompsonville, Illinois. His father led him to the Lord at home one Sunday afternoon. From an early age, he sensed God’s call on his life to be a missionary. He graduated from Ezra Christian School in West Frankfort, Illinois, in 1998. He answered the call to missions at age 19 after attending a service at Pittsburg FWB Church, in Pittsburg, Illinois, in 1999. He then went to Free Will Baptist Bible College where he met his future wife, Brenda Wendlandt, who also felt led to missions. He graduated from Welch College in 2003. He and Brenda were married on April 17, 2004.
Brenda, daughter of Dale and Joyce Wendlandt, was saved at an early age in Stigler, Oklahoma. It was at Eureka FWB Church Camp that she gave her life to the Lord and where later she answered the call to missions. March of 1996 she rededicated her life to the Lord at her home church, Lafayette FWB Church in Stigler, Oklahoma, and in June of that same year answered the call to missions. After that, she enrolled at Welch College and started attending in the fall of 1996.
Rusty and Brenda ministered at Unity Free Will Baptist Church in West Frankfort, Illinois, where Rusty’s father, Randy Carney, served as pastor. They were youth leaders and were involved in teaching children’s church, teaching a teen class, music, and missions projects. They received final approval for missionary service to Japan from the Free Will Baptist International Missions Board on April 24, 2007.
Rusty and Brenda arrived in Japan in January 2009. They lived in Sapporo while in language school, then moved to the city of Ebetsu where they finished out their first term working with pastor Hirabuki in the Koinonia church. They remained in Hokkaido throughout their second term. They lived in the town of Bihoro and worked with Japanese Pastor Ishii and his family. With teammates Nathan and Linda Snow they endeavored to encourage and strengthen the Bihoro and Abashiri churches. Both Rusty and Brenda taught English classes at the Bihoro church. Rusty also participated in a preaching rotation at both the Bihoro and Abashiri churches.
The Carneys have three children: Grace Anne, born February 3; Kelton Roy, born August 28; and Katherine Joy, born July 27.
Rusty—Unity FWB Church in West Frankfort, Illinois
Brenda—Lafayette FWB Church in Stigler, Oklahoma
Updated February 7, 2018
- Praise the Lord we have been safe in all our travels thus far!
- Praise the Lord this spring at least 5 people from three different churches in our Japanese Association were baptized!
- Pray for us as we continue to homeschool our daughter, Grace, throughout the summer. She is making good progress, but we still have a lot of ground to cover.
- Pray for continued safety on the road, and for our children as they are constantly adjusting to new environments.
- Pray the Lord would send many people to partner with us through prayer and giving so that many Japanese would be able to hear the message of hope.
Updated May 25, 2018