Phil and Kris Nelson are missionaries with Mission Aviation Fellowship serving in Nampa, Idaho. Their children, Daniel, Tim, and Laura, who are all young adults now, were born and raised in Indonesia. Phil and Kris share that it is always a joy to work and be a part of the ministry of MAF around the world.
Phil returned to work at MAF headquarters in 2011, after spending 20 years in Papua, Indonesia, as a pilot/mechanic. Phil and Kris lived at five different bases during their time in Papua, where Phil flew and maintained a variety of types of aircraft on wheels, floats and amphibious floats. His years of service have uniquely prepared him to work with the staff preparing for overseas ministry.
Phil is now working as a Maintenance Instructor in the Training Department at MAF’s headquarters. He shares, “I have always enjoyed doing maintenance. During our last two terms I had the privilege of training and mentoring several MAF staff as mechanics. I found it very rewarding, training others and seeing them be successful.” Now Phil is able to do this on an even larger scale in MAF’s Training Department as he helps evaluate, train and prepare MAF’s future mechanics. Since returning Phil has developed MAF’s turbine engine training curriculum, including the building of a turbine engine run up stand.
Kris homeschooled their three children the entire time they were in Papua. She continued to do so in the USA, wrapping it up in 2017 with Laura’s graduation. Since returning Kris has received training as an educational therapist and has been working full time in this capacity over the past few years. Kris finds great satisfaction in assisting students that have a variety of educational needs as she helps them to become more successful and often to graduate from high school. Working at a Christian high school gives her freedom to give spiritual input as well.
No matter where they live, Phil and Kris desire to use their gifts to see others come to faith, grow, and mature in Christ. They are actively leading a small group, helping on their church’s worship team and involved with other Bible studies. Galatians 6:9, “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up,” is the verse that keeps them persevering.
God calls the men and women of MAF to serve Him in unique ways. He may also be calling you to a special role in the Nelsons’ ministry. Please prayerfully consider becoming a ministry partner with them through prayer and/or financial support.
The U.S. offices of MAF serve as a hub for MAF services worldwide. A day in the life here includes specialized flight training, staff mobilization and counseling, purchasing and shipping of aircraft parts, finance and accounting, administration of an Internet gateway for worldwide email, fund raising, printing and mailing of various materials, and many, many more activities. Some staff serve around the country; training future pilots and mobilizing potential candidates to serve with MAF.
MAF missionaries raise support for a pooled fund out of which MAF covers salary, housing, benefits, and staff-related ministry expenses. MAF exercises discretion over the use of missionary support in the exercise of its mission and care of its staff.