KEYSTONE HEIGHTS - The College of Missionary Aviation held its graduation Saturday, and while all three graduates followed each other down the aisle, they will be taking quite different paths in the future.
One will go on to work with foster children, one will eventually train other pilots, and one looks to the mission field abroad. But all of them felt the calling from God.
Kenny Hancock had been a youth pastor in the Florida Panhandle for 12 years before he came to the college.
“God was calling me to the mission field,” he says.
“We sold our house and everything,” Hancock says of the move to Keystone Heights with his wife and children.
Hancock uses terms such as “phenomenal” and “top-notch” to describe his experience at the College of Missionary Aviation.
Now, the call to the mission field will take Hancock and his family back to the Panhandle, where he will be part of SWAN Aviation Ministries at Triple R Ranch. Triple R Ministries are dedicated to helping foster children and foster homes.
“We will provide the educational experience for the kids that will be part of the foster homes at the ranch,” Hancock says. “We will be training kids how to fly, and we’re going to do our best to train kids who would like to learn how to fix aircraft.”
“When you see those things happen, when you see a kid go from ‘No, I can’t’ to ‘Yes, I can’…with them saying ‘I know who God made me to be,’” then you know you have made an impact, Hancock adds.
Morgan Schrack is originally from Cocoa, Florida, and now lives in Gainesville where she attends Calvary Chapel.
“I didn’t really know why,” she says of her original call to aviation ministry and the college.
She soon realized after arriving that she was experiencing great spiritual growth.
“The Lord is moving here,” she says.
Schrack describes the college’s setting as “intimate” and a “family atmosphere.” To receive their diplomas, graduates must complete studies in theology and The Bible, along with enough flight hours to receive a commercial pilot license.
“I want to be faithful to what He’s calling me to be,” she says.
She will continue her education with the goal of becoming a flight instructor.
Schrack encourages others to heed their callings, by putting thoughts into action.
“It starts right now,” she says.
Although he has been a deliverance minister for the last eight years, at age 52 Matt Kindle has had the most winding path to the College of Missionary Aviation.
As Kindle explains it, it takes nearly an hour to tell the full story. One of the first times he felt God tugging on his heart was when he and his wife lived in the Philippines, and came across a situation where young girls were being hired out as prostitutes. That was one of many different life experiences that led him into the ministry.
As far as deciding to come to the college, the briefer version starts with his wife suggesting prayer one Sunday afternoon, to help them discern God’s will.
In the next three days after that prayer, Kindle had different discussions with different people each day where aviation ministry came up without prompting.
“You have my attention now, God!” he says he said at the time.
Part of that call included finding ways to pay for the education, and he found along the way that God always provided.
“God’s will, God’s bill,” is how Kindle describes it.
He looks forward to a time when he can be an in-country pilot.
“I’m a ‘boots on the ground’ type person,” he says.
Hancock, Kindle, and Schrack each receive a Bachelor of Science in Missions with a concentration in Aviation.