Wes & Rebecca Burns
Serving in the Far North
God has called the Burns family to take the Gospel to the people of Quebec, Canada. In land mass, Quebec is the largest province in Canada. In population, it is the second largest: just over 8.1 million people call Quebec their home. According to a recent study, there are less than 40,000 professing Christians in the province of Quebec: in other words, less than ½% of the people of Quebec profess Jesus Christ as Saviour. Quebec boasts a humanistic society rejecting biblical truth. The people of Quebec are in desperate need of the life-changing truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Wes grew up in a Christian home, was saved at age 6 and baptized at age 11. After completing Bible school, he assisted church-planting missionaries in northern Japan through music ministry, door-to-door tract distribution, leading some Bible studies, and teaching English as a second language. He also served in Bolivia, South America, helping at a farm associated with a school for missionary children. While in Bolivia, he saw first-hand what a helpful tool an airplane can be in reaching people with the Gospel. After returning from Bolivia, he started flight training and finished with a single-engine, commercial pilot’s license and instrument rating. He is also a certified Aircraft Maintenance Engineer.
Rebecca also grew up in a Christian home and was saved at age 7 and baptized at age 10. She began taking piano lessons when she was young, and faithfully used her musical talent to serve the Lord. Upon her graduation from a Christian college with a master’s degree in music, she taught music at the college level. During the school year, she was involved in a weekly neighbourhood Bible club. During summer break, she held Bible clubs for neighbourhood children at her home church.
Wes and Rebecca were married on July 3, 2004. God blessed them with two beautiful children, Kelsey (born in 2007) and Kenan (born in 2011). Since their marriage, they have served the Lord together leading youth group, teaching Sunday School, leading children’s church, assisting in vacation Bible schools, and doing music ministry. God began placing in their hearts a desire to reach their fellow Canadians with the Gospel, and specifically, the neighbouring province of Quebec. In June of 2010, they were approved to serve under BIMI. They moved to Quebec City from New Brunswick in September 2012 and completed their French studies in December 2013. In 2014, Wes and Rebecca moved 12 hours north-east of Quebec City to begin their church planting ministry in Havre-Saint-Pierre. The community of Havre-Saint-Pierre has a population of 3,500 souls. The church they have started, Eglise Biblique Baptiste de la Minganie (Mingan Bible Baptist Church), is the only Bible-preaching church in the community. Although they are based in Havre-Saint-Pierre, they desire to share the Gospel throughout the region. Community after community along the north shore and beyond are without a witness for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Since their move to Havre-Saint-Pierre, they have distributed the Gospel of John and Romans and other Gospel literature throughout the region, including the communities of Sheldrake, Rivière au Tonnere, Rivière St. Jean, Magpie, Longue Pointe de Mingan, Mingan, Havre-Saint-Pierre, Port-Menier (on Anticosti Island), Baie-Johan-Beetz, Aguanish, L’Ile Michon, Natashquan, the Nutashquan native reserve, Pointe-Parent and the English community of Kegaska.
205 kilometres east of Havre-Saint-Pierre, the road ends at the English community of Kegaska. After the end of the road system, there are many remote communities (English, French, and Inuit) that need to hear the Gospel. These communities represent close to 5,000 unreached souls. Wes and Rebecca desire to reach into these remote communities with the Gospel. They are currently in the process of raising funds for an airplane to facilitate their ministry in Quebec (and possibly beyond) as the Lord directs.