Neal & Danette Childs have been serving in Niger Republic since 1998. Neal grew up as a missionary kid in Nigeria where he saw mass evangelism and mighty miracles on a regular basis. It was there, as a young boy, that his heart was stirred to go where the Gospel had not yet been preached…to Reach the Unreached.
Ron & Jerry Childs with their children Julie, Neal & Sarah and some of the church members in Emu, Nigeria. This is the village Neal lived in when he first moved to Nigeria as an 11 year old boy in 1977.
Danette was born and raised in Minnesota and the seed of missions was planted in her life as a child as well.
Neal and Danette met at Oral Roberts University where Neal graduated with a degree in Management Information Systems and Danette graduated with a Social Work degree. They were married in 1989 and began working in their respective fields while at the same time were youth pastors in their church in Michigan. While in Michigan, they had 2 children – Trae (1991) and Tanika (1992).
In 1994 they moved to Arkansas to attend Agape School of World Evangelism. From 1994 – 1998 they were part of Agape Church — Pastor Happy Caldwell, and continued to work while attending Bible School.
After graduating in 1997, they were appointed as missionaries and immediately went on a 3 week scouting trip to Niger where Neal’s parents had moved from Nigeria to Niger to start the ministry of Vie Abondante (Abundant Life). The trip confirmed in their hearts that this was the field they were to serve in and after raising support they moved their family to Niger in July 1998. Tobi joined the family in March, 2000.
Neal’s parents, Ron & Jerry Childs; Founders of Vie Abondante
The Childs Family June 2011
Neal & Danette’s son Trae married the love of his life, Christi Dunagan, on June 16th, 2012. Christi is from a missions minded family and her parents are founders of Harvest Ministry. Trae and Christi are pursuing missions/ministry.
Trae & Christi are currently teaching English in Daegu, South Korea and on May 26, 2014, were blessed with their first son, Judah, Neal Childs!
Tanika will begin her senior year at Oral Roberts University in August 2014 and is studying Special Education.
Tobi is 14, in 8th grade, and is a missionary in Niger with his parents.