Time to Pass the Journal’s Leadership Baton

EMQ » January–March 2022 » Volume 58 Issue 1

By Marvin J. Newell and Heather Pubols

The Evangelical Missions Quarterly was conceived in an ice cream shop called the Eskimo Inn at Winona Lake, Indiana fifty-nine years ago. In October 1963, after the day’s evening session at the first joint meeting of the Evangelical Foreign Missions Association (EFMA) and the Interdenominational Foreign Mission Association (IFMA), a small group of mission leaders sat around the table talking about what they would like to see as lasting outcomes of that historic gathering. Someone tossed out the idea that the two associations join hands and produce a journal that would cross the lines between them and stand as a joint evangelical testimony to what they believed about world missions. The name Evangelical Missions Quarterly was chosen, and Jim Reapsome was appointed Managing Editor the following spring, with the first issue printed in October 1964.[1]

Reapsome held the position as Managing Editor until his retirement in 1997. Following him, Gary Corwin, noted missiologist at SIM, took the reins until 2001 at which time the magazine came under the able leadership of Scott Moreau, professor of missions at Wheaton College and Graduate School. Moreau was editor until the journal passed from ownership under EMIS/Billy Graham Center to Missio Nexus in 2017. With that, the journal came full circle since Missio Nexus was birthed as the result of the merger of the former IFMA and EFMA – the originators of the journal in 1963.

Missio Nexus appointed me as Editorial Director and my wife, Peggy, as Managing Editor. We have delighted in serving in these roles through this edition. But with our retirement from Missio Nexus, it is time to pass the baton on to someone who has new vision and ideas for the journal. I am pleased to introduce you to Heather Pubols as the new Editorial Director who comes with a wealth of experience in the journalistic and mission worlds. She has a vision and passion to keep EMQ relevant and significant in the world mission movement. Under her leadership we envision seeing the journal thrive and advance the cause of missions around the globe. As Peggy and I take our leave, we enthusiastically introduce to you Heather Pubols, who will now tell you about herself.

Marvin J. Newell, D.Miss
Editorial Director

The Lord works ahead of us preparing paths which pass through generations, and while one generation lives into their calling, another prepares for it.

My father grew up in Indiana just two and a half hours from where EFMA and IFMA leaders gathered in October 1963. At that time, my father was in his final year of Bible college, preparing to be a church planter back east. In 1964 as Jim Reapsome would have been preparing content for the first issue of the Evangelical Missions Quarterly, my father was traveling from his Indiana home to Rhode Island, a 1,000-mile drive, with little more than a suitcase and a few boxes. As that first issue of EMQ came out, he was holding his first church services as a home missionary for his denomination.

Years later, when my mom and siblings were in the picture, we’d often hear my father, with a zealous glee, recount his journey to this strange place we called home. The ritual implanted a sense in me that life with Jesus is a joyful adventure.

After completing my studies in communications, literature, and Bible, I searched for the adventure Jesus had for me. I wanted a journey that not only crossed through states, but also countries. While exploring my options, I thought, I wonder if I could use my skills in missions?

I’d never heard of a missionary with my skill set, but why not? That small seed grew into a missions adventure that brought my husband, Jeff, and me to live in four countries abroad. I went further, traveling to nearly every continent as a missionary communicator – using all that I studied to passionately pursue the story of God’s mission to share with followers of Jesus worldwide.

Along the way, I met missionaries of numerous nationalities, from all types of denominations, doing countless types of work participating with God to see his mission advance. In interviews and over meals, I heard about their strategies as well as their longing to see others know Jesus. This was the global classroom God designed for me, and it is what I bring as I accept the baton to lead EMQ.

You’ll continue to find thoughtful and well researched articles, here, from your missionary colleagues. However, I also hope to broaden EMQ’s submitter base, so that you can hear more from those less represented. EMQ issues will also continue to explore missions strategies, but also look into the heart of what God is doing as he draws people from all nations to himself.

And now, I ask you: how do you see God at work where you are? What could your fellow missionaries benefit from knowing from the lessons God is teaching you? I look forward to your submissions!

Heather Pubols
Incoming Editorial Director

Read EMQ Volume 58 Issue 1

EMQ, Volume 58, Issue 1. Copyright © 2022 by Missio Nexus. All rights reserved. Not to be reproduced or copied in any form without written permission from Missio Nexus. Email: EMQ@MissioNexus.org.

[1] Jim Reapsome, Evangelical Missions Quarterly 50, no. 4 (October 2014).