How A Young Couple Was Called to the Unreached

ABWE hasn’t had missionaries in an undisclosed Asian country in a decade. Daniel and Aemilii want to see that change.

From Message magazine issue "To the Ends of the Earth"

About 700 years ago, Kublai Kahn asked Pope Gregory X to send 100 Roman Catholic missionaries to his kingdom, which stretched across a fifth of the globe.

The Pope permitted just two, ultimately producing a meager Catholic population of less than two percent. It’s widely recognized as the greatest missed opportunity in the history of Roman Catholic missions.

For Daniel and Aemilii, a chance has risen again. And this time, they don’t plan on passing it up. They will take the life-changing, hope-infusing, God-honoring, Christ-exalting, destiny-altering gospel— the message of salvation by grace alone through faith in Jesus Christ, to this unreached land.​.

As a young girl, Aemilii would often recite the Lord’s prayer after her night terrors. She didn’t learn it at Sunday school, but from her father’s alcoholic seminar. Her family didn’t attend church. Instead, they believed in the “postmodern idea” that all roads lead to God.

Nonetheless, God’s pull on Aemilii strengthened over the years. She eventually became a Christian through InterVarsity. By leading Bible studies and living in community with other Christian women, she grew in her faith while at Winona State University.

In 2014, she studied abroad in Costa Rica to improve her Spanish-speaking abilities. Aemilli met her future husband at a local church event. Daniel describes their first meeting in the park as divine providence. He was more than willing to take on the role of her Spanish tutor. They began dating just one month before Aemilii returned to the US.

Having parents who were active in the church, Daniel grew up serving in the youth group and sleeping in pews during evening services. He always assumed Costa Rica was a “reached” nation because of the Christian community that surrounded him. His perception changed as he traveled to remote areas with his church. The Lord showed him the brokenness that plagued his country.

“If my country of Costa Rica is still in need, then how much more in need are other countries where the gospel isn’t part of the norm,” Daniel said.

Daniel pursued youth ministry, but his heart was bent on going overseas when he first met Aemilii. She also had a passion to serve abroad, and so the pair connected through their mutual callings. After dating long distance for over a year, they married in 2016, and Aemilii moved to Costa Rica.

Lord willing, they plan to leave for an undisclosed country in Asia in 2021, becoming ABWE’s first missionaries to serve there in the last 10 years.

Editor’s Note: Learn more about Daniel and Aemilii’s ministry here.