1. How long have you been attending Troy UMC and what drew you to this church?
Since 1995. We visited several churches when we first moved to Troy and felt at home here. Plus it was close to home, which meant we would be more likely to get more involved than just attending on Sundays.
2. Which service do you typically attend?
9:00. We enjoy the praise and worship music. Also, my husband, Andy, occasionally plays guitar with the Praise Band.
3. Share a favorite Bible verse, and why this is a favorite.
Philippians chapter 4 gives me so much encouragement. One favorite verse is Philippians 4:13 because it gives me courage to face difficult situations, while reminding me that I must depend on God rather than being too confident in myself. Another favorite is Philippians 4:6-7. I've prayed through those words often and God has used them to carry me through difficult times.
4. Tell us about your family.
My family includes my husband and best friend, Andy (we've been married since 1983) and Nike, the most affectionate cat I've ever known. I’m thankful my mom moved from Florida to Cambridge House in Maryville nearly two years ago; I enjoy spending time with her every week.
Andy and I never had our own children, but we sponsor children around the world through Compassion International. Since 2004, we've been blessed to travel around the world to meet a number of our sponsor children (the ones we’ve met are pictured in the collage). It's been amazing and educational to see firsthand the poverty that exists in their worlds and the hope Compassion is bringing.
|Andy and Dannette McKellar|
|Dannette's mother and husband, Andy|
|Dannette's cat, Nike|
5. Share your involvement with Compassion International.
We've been Compassion sponsors since 1990. In 2004, God led us to Guatemala to meet our sponsor child, Viviana. That trip changed our world as it opened our eyes to poverty and God's heart for the poor. So we became volunteer advocates for Compassion, speaking on behalf of children in poverty to churches and individuals, whoever will listen. We've been blessed to see Compassion at work in nine countries around the world and to visit Compassion’s headquarters in Colorado Springs. We’ve seen firsthand, so we are confident that Compassion is using donations as promised to release children from poverty in Jesus' name. I also write devotionals every week to encourage other Compassion Advocates in their ministries. It's been an amazing blessing to combine my passions for writing and encouraging others with my travel experiences to do God's ministry!
6. What do you do besides volunteering for Compassion?
I work full-time for a financial services firm in St. Louis as a project leader in their information technology area. One of my favorite responsibilities is creating and facilitating project management training; it’s rewarding to see other project leaders grow and develop. Outside work, I enjoy spending time with Andy, especially when we’re travelling or hiking. We have a personal goal to hike in all 50 states, and have already hiked in 34, though our progress slowed down when we started traveling internationally. I also love scrapbooking, especially when I am creating scrapbooks from our travels.
7. What has been the most spiritual experience of your life?
Worshiping on our Compassion trips is near the top. I vividly remember the first Compassion center we visited in Rwanda, Africa. We were in a simple mud brick church with a dirt floor and no electricity. The small church was dimly lit by sunlight streaming through the open door and windows. But joy radiated from the faces of nearly 300 children. I've never felt the Holy Spirit more than I did when those children began singing praise songs at the top of their lungs in their native Kinyarwandan. We couldn’t understand their words, but we knew God was alive in that place. Andy often says he feels closest to God when he has his passport in hand. There's a lot of truth in that when you're visiting Christians in the developing world. It's amazing to be with people who are overflowing with gratitude when they have so little.
8. How may we contact you in order to make a further connection?