Pastor, Cross Connection Escondido
Miles DeBenedictis is the Senior Pastor of Cross Connection Escondido, the church he attended as a child and was discipled for ministry by.
After high school Miles briefly attended Calvary Chapel Bible College and later served as a Youth Pastor at CCEsco. Miles was ordained in January of 2002 and continued to serve in Escondido until 2004, when he stepped out to teach with Pastor David Guzik, at the Bible College extension in Siegen, Germany. Returning from Germany in 2005 Miles continued to serve and teach at the main Bible College campus in Murrieta, California; as well as assist at his home church in Escondido. In April of 2008 he stepped into a new role as the Senior Pastor of Cross Connection Escondido, where he continues to serve.
Pastor Miles is committed to the equipping of the saints and is passionate about the clear teaching of God’s word, line upon line.
Miles, his wife Andrea and their three children (Ethan, Addison & Evangeline) live in Escondido, California.
Senior Pastor, Valley Baptist, Valley Center, CA
In May 2007, Pastor Gunnar was invited to take on the task of restarting Valley Baptist Church which had dwindled down to 12 elderly people and was about to close their doors for good. After much prayer, Gunnar, with the support of his wife Anna, took a leap of faith and decided to take on the mission God had placed before them. Gunnar’s passion for teaching the Word and love for his community has brought life back into this church.
Pastor Gunnar came to know Christ through a series of poor decisions while serving as a U.S. Navy SEAL in San Diego. After becoming a Christian, Gunnar’s love for the Scriptures blossomed, leading him into deeper study of the Bible which ultimately led him into the pastoral ministry after 12 years in the Navy.
Gunnar and his wife Anna have been married since 2002. Anna was born and raised in a Christian home and enjoyed growing up as a “missionary kid” in southern Spain. Her father, Pastor John Hilton, is currently the Senior Pastor of The Chapel, a family church in La Mesa, Ca. Gunnar and Anna are the proud and happy parents of their Three beautiful children, Grace, Elizabeth and Gideon.
Gunnar has earned a B.A. in Biblical Studies and a Master’s of Divinity from Southern California Seminary. He has also completed doctoral work at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Gunnar volunteers as a San Diego Sheriff Chaplain, Escondido Police Chaplain for the SWAT Team.
Pastor, Calvary Chapel Santa Cruz
Pastor Bill Holdridge has been in pastoral ministry since 1976. He has pastored in four different churches, and was the founding pastor of Calvary Chapel Monterey Bay in Monterey, CA, where he served for 27 years. Currently, he is senior pastor of Calvary Chapel Santa Cruz in Scotts Valley, CA.
Bill is also the founder and President of Poimen Ministries, a support ministry to other senior pastors and churches. He also serves on the Boards of Directors of several churches and Christian discipleship ministries, and has traveled extensively in his role as an instructor for Calvary Chapel Bible College. He is the author of two books: Encounter: Ephesians and Encounter: James, both of which are devotional studies in God’s Word.
Bill and his wife Sheri make their home in Soquel, CA, and have been blessed with three adult married children and eight grandchildren.
Bill’s passion is to teach the Word of God, and his calling is summarized by Paul’s words in Colossians 1:28: “Him we preach, warning every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus.”
Pastor, Cross Connection International Fellowship, Phoenix, AZ
Jeff has been the senior pastor of Cross-Connection International Fellowship in Phoenix, AZ, since April of 2007. The church is heavily engaged in serving refugees from Burma, Bhutan, and Iraq. He also serves as the Director of Missionary Care and Church Relations for Shepherd’s Staff Mission Facilitators, a missions organization that he founded in 2000.
Jeff responded to Jesus’ call to follow Him in Oct. of 1981, and became Pat Kenney’s assistant pastor at Calvary Chapel of Escondido in December of 1985. Jeff and his family were sent from that church to Cebu City, Philippines in September of 1987 to plant Calvary Chapel of Cebu City. After transitioning the church over to national leadership, Jeff and his family returned to Southern California in April of 1993. He then planted Calvary International Fellowship in 1994, in the North country inland area of San Diego, transitioning out of the church in 2003 to concentrate full time on leading Shepherd’s Staff Mission Faciliators. During those years, Jeff also taught the missions classes at Calvary Chapel Bible College in Murietta, (1997-2000) became one of the teachers of the Worldwide Perspectives course, and began serving on a number of church and missions organizations boards.
In April of 2004, at the age of 45, Jeff was diagnosed with A.L.S., which is also know as Lou Gehrig’s disease. After making radical changes in a number of areas, including a move to Nevada, he was re-diagnosed in September of 2006 with Kennedy’s disease, (SBMA–Spinal Bulbar Muscular Atrophy). This is also a neuro-muscular disease that generally follows the same course as ALS, but moves at a slower pace and normally doesn’t become a cause of death.
Jeff and his wife Helen have been married 34 years, have 3 grown children and 5 grandchildren, all of whom live in Nevada and Southern California.
Pastor, Calvary Chapel Leatherhead, England
Matt Kottman is a disciple of Jesus, a husband, a father of four, and a pastor/church planter in Leatherhead, England. Since 1997, Matt and his wife Dianna have had the honor of serving Jesus in missions ministry both in Austria and in the United Kingdom. The Kottmans have learned the meaning of the word “sojourner” as they serve Jesus cross-culturally. Matt desires to see churches planted and disciples trained whose love for the gospel would mirror their Savior who left his heavenly culture to reveal the message and mission of God to a world in need of salvation. This has taken on a deeper meaning for Matt, as he’s a dual-citizen of the US and the UK, Matt sees this as a reflection of his true dual-citizenship as a citizen of the heavenly kingdom and a citizen of this earth. Matt enjoys time with his family, reading, and running.
Pastor, The Village Chapel, Lompoc, CA
Chuck Musselwhite started in full time ministry in 1994 after graduating from Vanguard University. His first position was as Youth Pastor at Pacific Christian Center. It was there he met his future wife Jennifer. After a year of doing ministry there he became the Youth Pastor at Rialto First Assembly of God where he served for two years. In March of 1997 he married Jennifer and soon after was offered the position of Executive Director of the Santa Maria Youth For Christ office. There he ministered to seven school campuses through clubs and Bible studies. In 2000 God moved him back into the church as the Youth Pastor of Calvary Chapel Santa Maria. It was there that seeds were planted in his heart to minister in Vandenberg Village.
Over the next six years God took Chuck and Jennifer through a process of preparing them for this. Many times they prayed over the opportunity but it wasn’t until the summer of 2006 that it became a reality.
In December of 2006 they made the move to Lompoc as they readied the church for its first Sunday service. On Sunday January 28, 2007 The Village Chapel held its first service. From there God has blessed the church immensely.
Chuck and Jennifer have four children who keep their days very busy. When he gets a free moment, Chuck loves to Mountain Bike in the hills behind his house.