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Olivia VanGels

Olivia VanGels


Aloha! My name is Olivia VanGels!

I’m a full-time missionary with Youth With A Mission (YWAM)! I completed my Discipleship Training School in March of 2024 at YWAM Madang in Papua New Guinea where I went on my outreach. As per our extended outreach commitment, my team and I will be serving here on the base until the end of August!

During my 6 month DTS, I spent 3 months in Kona Hawaii at YWAM Ships. Every week we had new theological speakers come in for lectures where we had the incredible opportunities to hear from, learn, and ask questions to people from all over the world. Topics such as Lordship, Father Heart of God, Biblical Worldview, and Relationships were among many of the incredible weeks we had. Speakers from Africa, The U.S. and the Pacific Islands came to teach our classes! Focusing 3 months solely on learning about the Lord and growing with Him, really skyrocketed the love and relationship I have with Him. I began to learn what it really means to be a daughter of the Maker of the Universe, and to be loved by my Heavenly Father who is nothing but good. 

For the past decade, Loren Cunningham —YWAM’s founder— has pushed the Oral Bible Translation and End Bible Poverty Now initiatives because he believed that everyone deserves the right to the Living Word of God in their mother tongues. Papua New Guinea is one of the most linguistically diverse countries in the world with over 800 languages in the country. YWAM Madang is committed to orally translating 33 of the languages into the full Bible and to distributing them to these oral cultured languages! So, as YWAM Madang runs their first Oral Bible Translation school, I am volunteering as base staff in the financial office! That is, until my next steps of course:

DTS grew my love for God’s word, and I began reading the Bible cover to cover; that’s still a work in progress, but I’m really enjoying the Old Testament! He also ignited a love for discipleship in me. I've always been a very relationship oriented person, so when the door opened to staff with YWAM Ships, lead outreaches, and mentor students, it became what I hope is my next step. My love for His word continues to grow, but I've realized that my foundation in it is not what I would like it to be…yet! Praise God for Bible Schools! YWAM offers a multitude of Bible Schools, and Discipleship Bible School caught my eye immediately; a 3 month course through the University of the Nations devoted to reading the entire Bible, and studying it for its history, humanity, and Godly teachings! I decided that if I wanted to staff a DTS, I want to be able to gain a better foundation of the Bible so that I can teach, mentor, and live directly from it instead of the bits and pieces I’ve accumulated over the years. 

SO! I could not be more excited to be accepted into YWAM Queenstown Discipleship Bible School in New Zealand! Since I was little, I have always, always, wanted to go to New Zealand, and one of the biggest things DTS taught me is that life with and for the Lord isn’t always suffering for the gospel. When we follow the call of God, I believe He champions the desires of our hearts, and while there are, and have been seasons of uncomfortability, I truly believe the Lord cherishes the dreams we have and that He has placed them within us. He presented this opportunity to me, and I am so excited to learn more about Him and His word in a place that He has put in my heart since I was little. He’s just the sweetest!

After Bible school I plan on starting a 2 year commitment staffing the Life & Liberty DTS that I attended that brought me to Papua New Guinea. Along with getting to sit in on new lectures, that’ll mean leading an outreach team, mentoring students, and helping them on the journey that I just went on with the Lord. Another perk of that 2 year commitment though, will be that I can take a self-paced leadership course through University of the Nations and earn a Christian Leadership degree, but like I said, I want to gain a more solid Biblical foundation before I can confidently lead others towards the conclusions that the Lord has brought me to!

The key to long term missions fundraising is monthly supporters! So, I am looking for monthly supporters to help me reach my goal of $1,200 a month! I had the opportunity to read an awesome book on biblical fundraising called “The God Ask” by Steve Shadrach; a big idea he focused on is to not let a budget limit your vision, but to let your vision create your budget, so in order to begin saving, tithing, going on outreaches, and living on YWAM bases, $1,200 a month is a small start to big ministry I am planning! 

I have no doubt in what the Lord is calling me into with full time missions and I ask you to prayerfully consider supporting my vision monthly or with a special gift of your choosing and ultimately partner with me and the Lord in this Great Commission work of making disciples!

I have a periodic email newsletter that I would love to get you connected to if you email me at: 

Otherwise, I just want to thank everyone who has been so faithful these past few months and who will continue to be faithful in fundraising and prayer! 

The Lord has me in the palm of His plan and I wouldn’t wish to be anywhere else!



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