Aaron and Tonya Wentz were students at Moody from 1994-1998. They attended Rock Church at that time. Ministering at Rock was Aaron’s Practical Christian Ministry. He worked with the youth in Sunday School, children’s church, and played the drums.
As a campus missionary under the Alliance of Campus Evangelists & Apologists (ACEA), Apologist Aaron Wentz works with Dr. Rice Broocks (Author, God’s Not Dead) developing apologists and apologetic presentations for the college campus and beyond. As the founder of the Michigan School of Apologetics (MSOA), Aaron is preparing people for eternity through confidence in the Christian world-view. And provides life-changing tools to share the gospel. Based at Michigan State University, Aaron’s ministry extends throughout Michigan and beyond (michigansoa.org). As a board member of ACEA, (campusevangelists.org), Aaron consults with its president, Dr. Leo Lawson, B.I.S. (Fuller) in creating materials to equip both campus evangelists and apologists. Aaron is an advisor to the student organization, Every Nation @ MSU through which he does evangelism and makes disciples. Aaron and Tonya have 2 children, Ky’el and Kasiah.
Recent News June of 2022
It has been a great joy for me to bring students out to share the gospel.MSU is the ninth-largest university in America. I don’t know ofany campus ministry that is training their students to go out and share the gospel with their peers. I know this sounds shocking, but it isa taste of the reality of the times we are living in. In the picture is our campus president – Jayce.He did a great job sharing and defending the gospel on this day. Other students of mine did a tremendous job as well. I am very proud of them. Next week, three of our studentswill be in North Carolina for a week-long ministry training– I am so excited for them. Thanks for investing in the lives of our students- that in some small way we can curb the onslaught of evil invading our young people.
Mental Health Challenges and Suicide
Recently one of my former students committed suicide.
I went to the wake in Detroit and gave my condolences to his mother. From my experience currently, I think about 60% of students now have some sort of mental health challenge – as well as in my own family. When I think about my student, I wonder if I could have done more, said more of the gospel to him, etc. I think I could have done more. The Lord is helping me through this current situation. The lesson learned is that let’s not give up sharing and supporting each other. Eternity hangs in the balance. Thank you for standing with us.
It gives me great joy to announce that our son was married on May 29th. Ky’el and Brittney met about a year and a half ago through church. Tonya and I are so thankful to have a godly daughter-in-law. The day was absolutely perfect. Ky’el and Brittney had a small outdoor wedding and I was honored to officiate. We would like to thank you as our partner for helping us raise Ky’el and Kasiah. Not only have you reached hundreds of thousands of people with the gospel, but our own son and daughter as well. Your investment in our family has been a blessing to our children. Tonya and I just want to say thank you.
We are happy to announce Kasiah graduated from high school! Many of you know her story that Kasiah has had a migraine every day for six years. We are as excited about her graduation as we were the wedding. What a miracle that Kasich has pushed through and finished her school work. We couldn’t be more proud. I hugged Kasiah and cried over her knowing she has been through the darkest valley and persevered. Many of you have prayed for Kasiah, thank you. We are celebrating a win this month. Pray for the next steps in her journey.
In our last newsletter, we asked you to pray for “Mary” (name is changed to protect privacy.) She attended the God’s Not Dead event on campus that we helped host. Mary came to our follow-up meetings and seemed very interested, yet skeptical. God moved quickly in her heart. Towards the end of December we sat with her for three hours and said, “Mary, you have made such amazing strides towards Jesus. Would you like to give your life to Jesus today?” “Yes!” She said enthusiastically. That day Mary gave her life to Christ, and since then is beaming!
Soon after conversion, Mary asked me, “When can I get baptized?” “Wow,” I thought, “She is on fire!” At the end of February, we had a joint baptism service with other campus ministries. Mary invited her entire family. This included an atheist brother, two Muslim friends, and a Mormon coworker who all came. After Mary’s sharing, you could hear a pin drop in the room. Someone said after, “That was the most amazing testimony I have ever heard.” A public invitation was given at the end of the service and the atheist friend received Christ that day as well. And if that can’t get any better, she wants to go on an overseas mission trip this summer. Praise the Lord. Tonya is now discipling Mary, along with a few others. A great story like this is God’s grace, his extreme love, and all of us working together to win the lost and disciple the saved. Thank you!
Since we are still coming out of a pandemic, I am still teaching pastors around the globe on Zoom. I just finished a six-week, 12-hour apologetics and evangelism seminar. We had people on the video call from Myanmar, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Kenya, and South America. I added notes on my world map so you can see their locations. The man from Myanmar is right in the middle of a civil war in his country. He has chosen to fight against the extremists and had me on his cell phone listening to me while hiding in his bunker. All the men on the call were so thankful for my time with them. They are like many people around the world where they have zeal but need more training. Thank you for your support to help these men of God.
Thank you for your support to help these men of God.
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I am so thankful for an amazing summer and a beautiful fall. We are still in a pandemic, and people I know are still getting sick, unfortunately. However, we are back at Michigan State University (MSU) at almost normal capacity. We have to wear masks indoors at all times. Despite these setbacks, we have some great news to share!
Over this past year and a half, I have gotten to know Dr. Rice Brocks, the co-founder o Every Nation and creator of the God’s Not Dead book, movie, and apologetics events. For the past 3-4 months, with the help of Every Nation missionaries, Dr. Broocks and my supervisor, Dr. Leo Lawson, we prepared and finally launched another God’s Not Dead event on the campus of MSU – October 5th. We handed out flyers to thousands of students. On the night of the event, we had about 160 students attend and hear the gospel. An evangelistic call was given at the end, and Tonya and I are now following up on many students that want to know God more. We had responses from a man from Africa, a Muslim and so, so many more students. Planning and preparing for the event was a lot of work, but what a joy to relaunch the campus ministry this year with a bang! Thank you for your support to reach people for Christ through me.
Tonya and I are so happy you are in our lives partnering together to reach people for Christ. Here are some recent updates:
Recently, I had an open spiritual discussion in one of the MSU dorms. I purposely played a video a little louder than normal so other people in the lounge could hear the video. Sure enough, a student named J. turned around and asked if he could join our group. After the event was done, he shared his heart, and I shared some of the gospel with him. The following week, he came to our weekly Friday gathering and cried over some struggles in his life. The next Friday, he came to our groupagain. Afterward (to make a long story short), J. said he wanted Jesus not just with him but in him. J. surrendered his life to Jesus as His Lord and Savior that night – Praise God! Thanks to your partnership, we can introduce people to Christ. And, I’m sure, J. thanks you as well.
After the God’s Not Dead event this fall, Tonya has stepped up to lead a women’s Bible study at MSU for those hungry for more after the event.The group is a mixture of believers and pre-believers. The challenge for groups like this is everyone in the group comes from diverse backgrounds. One person, in particular, is named Mary. The first night at one of the gatherings, she challenged some of our ideas openly. Recently, however, she told Tonya, “I can’t explain it, but God is coming after me. I even broke up with my boyfriend over it. In fact, one of my friends said, ‘Mary, you’re changing, what is it?’” Please be in prayer for Mary! Let’s pray for a miracle in her. (Her name is changed for privacy.)
One of my joys is teaching my evangelism and apologetics seminar world wide called the Michigan School of Apologetics. In the late fall, I finished an apologetics seminar over Zoom in three countries – Uganda, Liberia, and Iraq. One student who took the Zoom class from Iraq is a recent convert out-of-Islam, and is surrounded by Muslims daily. His entire family is Muslim. I was able to teach him how to start conversations with Muslims and share the gospel. He called me “Mr.Aaron” in his Arabic accent. I told this man, “You are my first student in Iraq. I am so excited.” When he graduated he said, “Mr. Aaron, I will read my notes daily and cherish this class for the rest of my life.” You can’t get any better comments than this as a teacher. Wow. I am so grateful. Without you my friend, I wouldn’t have the time to teach these classes or evangelize often. So, thank you to you for your partnership to make this story possible.
As always, there are more stories to tell, but I will keep them here. OurGod has come and shown himself to us and has given us new life. Tonyaand I will declare his gospel until he takes us home. Thank you forpartnering with us to make Jesus famous among the nations. We love youin Christ. Merry Christmas!
Love in Christ,
Recently I was reminded that soul-winning is a spiritual battle. I met a young man (B.) from Nepal and shared the gospel with him. I invited him to a Bible study the following week, and he came! He was consistent for two more Bible studies. At the end of the third study I said, “I’m going to pray God speaks to you.” That night at 2:00 am he texted me and wrote, “God spoke to me… I will be there at your next campus meet-up.” Sure enough, at our weekly campus gathering, B. came. He began to tell how God’s presence came in his room and began to show him all of his sins. He immediately began to ask God for forgiveness. Next, he said, the Devil showed up in my room. B. still continued to call on the Lord. As he told his story to our group, we were all in awe and rejoiced in the Lord. Since then, however, B. has been hard to get a hold of, and he has not been back to our group. I feel that he is under spiritual warfare for his soul. He is just one out of tens of thousands of students. Would you join me in praying for B. that Jesus breaks the chains off of him [for] good! And let’s pray for more to come into the kingdom.
On the home-front, Ky’el is working part-time and is an intern as worship leader at a local church. Kasiah is still severely struggling with her health, and is taking online public school. Tonya has gotten more involved with me on campus, and takes care of Kasiah.
For financial support, go to: www.reliant.org/aaron.wentz
“...SHUT UP! HE’S PREACHING THE WORD OF GOD!” Over the last 15 years of winter subway ministry, it has not been uncommon for someone to curse and swear at me out loud. Sometimes people laugh and join in, but then, once in a while, someone will come to my defense and say things like “Let the guy speak” or “I want to hear what he is saying.” Recently a man began to really light into me, and a young lady told him to “…shut up! He’s preaching the Word of God.” Well, that didn’t go so well, and when I was finished preaching, the man came up to me and began to use words against me I can’t print. I just put my head down and walked away saying nothing. The man then was left with the young lady and her boyfriend. He must not have known the girl’s boy friend had a temper and within seconds the boyfriend attacked the man and gave him a beating on the train and ran away. I was stunned.
“WHICH IS TRUE?” The heart of mission work is to reach people who have never read the Bible or heard of Jesus. Every few minutes in the subway, many many people walk by who have never held or read the Bible because in their country it is illegal. There are many people in this category in Boston. Often I get to give them the gospel and talk with them. One afternoon, such a group of people walked down the stairs where I was handing out tracts and Arabic gospels of Luke. The group of women were all very intrigued that I was there waiting, in a sense, to talk with them. They were all very grateful. Two women have come to Christ over the years with my just being there to start a relationship with them based on God and His Word. Recently, I sat with a woman from Morocco who said, “In my country, it is illegal to read the Bible. Which is true, our book or the Bible?” “Great question,” I said. “Your book says Jesus didn’t die on a cross and rise from the dead. The Bible says he did die on the cross and rise from the dead. One book has to be right and the other wrong.” The woman agreed and hung her head slightly as I began to give her the evidence for the cross and the resurrection historically. It is gospel seeds such as these that God uses to help others to explore the truth.
NOT ONLY DO I GET TO SHARE CHRIST with people on the streets of Boston, but Tonya and I have been very active in evangelism and discipleship in our local church for the past 12 years. I would like to share with you a powerful and refreshing story about God’s amazing grace that came about from that ministry. I want to introduce to you my friend George, who will share his salvation testimony. We praise God for the privilege of being messengers of the gospel to George. Please take three minutes to read his story.
SALVATION TESTIMONY OF GEORGE
HELLO, MY NAME IS GEORGE, and I would like to share my story with you. I attended college in the Boston area, after which I began working as a prominent financial officer for the City of Boston. I was successful with almost all of my financial projects, working with almost 300 million dollars. Though undeservedly, I was heralded as a financial wizard, which resulted in a job offer from a large private company at three times my salary. I enjoyed great success with that company but left after only one year and started my own company.
UNTIL THEN, I HAD NEVER DESIRED TO KNOW GOD and only prayed when I wanted something. I knew of God, but did not know God. I had never thanked Him for anything, not even for my wife and four beautiful children. My marriage was troubled because I basically lived an increasingly ungodly and irresponsible life. I started being unfaithful and not coming home. Soon I began drinking heavily and did so more and more until I lost my family and became homeless, sleeping in parks, and eating out of garbage cans. I even missed my own daughter’s funeral because of my addiction. Lying, cheating and stealing to support my drinking finally landed me in jail. It was there, in total desperation that I asked for a Bible.
I STARTED READING THE BIBLE EVERY DAY and took pages of notes. I attended church in jail faithfully for the first time and went to Bible studies every day for almost two years. Unfortunately, I was being taught by a cult which strongly believed that you had to be baptized in water to be forgiven and go to heaven.
SOON AFTER I GOD OUT OF JAIL, I began to drink heavily and soon found myself desperate and at “rock bottom” again. By the grace of God, I found myself guided to Compass Point, a ministry that helps men coming out of jail. Through Compass Point, I went to Trinity Baptist Church and was quickly asked to join a small group Bible study led by Aaron and Tonya Wentz, along with 10 other people. During our Bible studies, I learned that Jesus Christ, God’s Son, came into the world, lived a perfect life, and died on the cross to pay for all the wrongs I had done, and then rose from the dead three days later. This conflicted with what I had learned in jail, and I rejected this message because I believed you had to be baptized to be saved, so I decided to leave the small group. But Aaron pursued me. He came to my apartment at Compass Point and spent hours explaining to me, in detail how someone can be forgiven for their sins, saved, and go to heaven. John 3:3, 3:16, and Romans 4 about justification by faith began to make sense as God’s Holy Spirit awakened me to the truth. It became very clear that eternal life was only through believing or trusting in Jesus Christ alone for forgiveness. Nothing else. No mention of baptism. Christ was enough. That night alone in my room I prayed: “God, thank you for the truth. I believe Christ died for me and I trust in him alone. That is enough.”
GOD CHANGED MY LIFE that night. Right away, a burden was lifted from my shoulders. Instead of fear of the future and death, I now had great joy and security in Christ. The old George died and a new George was “born again” just like the Bible said. I felt God’s love and He began to change me. I stayed with that small group and was discipled by Aaron and Tonya, along with 10 other Christians for two years. I now live for the Lord, wanting to do everything in honest and integrity as an ambassador for God. I am working for a Christian nonprofit organization in Brockton, Massachusetts, in which I am using my financial skills for God’s glory, not my own. Thank you for taking the time to read what God has done in my life. God bless you!