William was raised in the small town of Beloit, Wisconsin by Bill and Kathy Ruck. Growing up, he attended Central Christian Church in Beloit, WI. As a youth, he was active in the church youth group and led some small Bible studies.
Jo was raised in rural Minnesota on a dairy farm by Mark and Virginia Koopmeiners. She grew up attending Community Covenant Church in Upsala, MN. She was also actively involved in the church, attending youth group, helping with children’s ministries, and with worship.
William and Jo both attended Central Christian College of the Bible in Moberly, Missouri where William received a bachelor’s degree in Preaching Ministry and Jo received one in Youth and Family Ministry. It was there that they met and fell in love. After graduating they were married in July of 2007.
After moving to Japan in February of 2009, they both taught English at Meysen Academy in Sendai until 2011. While there they learned a lot about what it takes to live in Japan. It was a great opportunity to ease into Japanese culture. In Sendai William and Jo attended Asahigaoka Christian Church and had a great chance to be a part of a healthy functioning church in Japan.
They enjoyed teaching but decided that in 2011 they would leave their jobs to attend language school and work with Mustard Seed Christian Church in Nagoya. After spending about 9 months in language school William joined the staff of Mustard Seed part-time and began teaching English part-time. At Mustard Seed, William worked on various building projects, helped expand their small group program, and worked with various outreach programs.
Like in 2011 now is a time of transition. William will be joining the ministry team of a local seminary, Christ Bible Institute, where he will be doing many of the same things that he did at Mustard Seed but in a full-time. The Rucks will still attend and volunteer at Mustard Seed in conjunction with William’s work at CBI.
The future holds great excitement. The church is growing in a way that Japan has not seen in a long time. There is a revival coming in Japan, the harvest is plentiful but the workers are few.
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