Ralph was born in Muskegon, Michigan, the third of seven children, to parents who loved the Lord deeply, attended church regularly, and taught the Bible faithfully. As a teen he decided he wanted to know and follow God. He graduated with a degree in Bible theology from Moody Bible Institute where, more importantly, he met Ellen, the love of his life ever since. In 2009 he earned a masters in organizational leadership.
Born in Wyoming and growing up there and in Colorado, Ellen was raised in a Jesus-loving home and became a Christian at eight. Attending the University of Colorado as a Spanish major, she felt God's nudging toward missions. She and Ralph had met at Moody Bible Institute and after a long, mostly-correspondence dating relationship, were married in 1977
From 1985 to 2005 Ralph and Ellen lived in Lima, Peru, being part of the neighborhood and community, raising their children, two of whom were born there, and contributing to the development of two communities of Christ followers.
In 2007 they moved to Guadalajara, Mexico
five children: Mitchell, Anthony, Marta, April, Jeffrey
Ellen enjoys teaching English and having people in her home for meals and other gatherings. She especially enjoys small group Bible studies, working with young moms, and being involved in discipleship.
Ralph enjoys expressing his love for God and others in playing sports, beginning and leading small groups, and using life coaching to help people discover and live out their unique God-given design and purpose.