Base Staff & Trust

Meet The YWAM Oxford Family

Meet our base leaders, base staff, and our trust. These are the folks who make up the YWAM Oxford family and keep the base going day-in and day-out. Get to know the family by reading their profiles below or come by the base for a cuppa, a chat and to see what God's up to.

Base Leaders & Staff

James Smith

My name is James Smith and I'm from Australia but have been living in NZ for over 11 years now. I have a great wife Carolyn and 4 (soon to be 5) wonderful boys. I love most sports, especially rugby league and cricket and getting out in the outdoors. I completed the Fathers Love DTS at YWAM Oxford in 2011 and that changed my life and walk with God.

I have been the Base Leader for the last 4 years and my passion is the Schools of Sonship that we run. I also work with 14 and 15 year old boys in the local school. I love seeing people come to know God as 'Abba Father' as when the 'penny' drops this changes everything. It also rewarding seeing people get a heart for the nations but for now my mission is at home with my 5 boys and wife and seeing the people from the nations come to us at YWAM Oxford.

I love the simplicity and beauty of NZ as well as the story of the land and it's indigenous people (the Maori) whom I have a real heart for.

Beto Dieste

I first got involved with YWAM when I was 16 on a week long mission trip to YWAM Las Vegas. I fell in love with the ministry, so I decided to return to Las Vegas the following summer and spent 8 weeks working with them. I soon discovered all the opportunities YWAM had to offer, so I decided to do the Skiers/Snowboarders DTS in Queenstown, NZ. During my lecture phase we took a road trip to Oxford and that was where I learned about this base and it's ministry.

After my DTS finished I decided to make a commitment serving in Oxford. I love anything to do with the outdoors, being here gives me so many opportunities to find an adventure. Music is a huge passion of mine, so you'll often find me playing guitar and piano in my free time. Also, I'm a softy for Disney and Pixar films, and I'm not afraid to cry during those movies.

Alec Kemper

My name is Alec and I am on the Building and Grounds team here at YWAM Oxford. I hail from the beautiful Boring, Oregon (yes, that is the town I am from). I am a lover of coffee and all things Jesus. I like to be outdoors working on my farmers tan. I am the youngest of 6 children and I am a new Uncle. I absolutely love the Bible and talking about it, so if you ever want to talk about anything theological come and talk to me.

I did my DTS here in Oxford in 2016. During my DTS God radically deepened my relationship with Him. Through some closed and some opened doors, God gave me the opportunity to return to YWAM Oxford. Since I have returned to Oxford, God has been growing me in my identity as a son. One of the main reasons I returned to staff at YWAM Oxford is to help raise a generation of followers of Jesus who love the Lord fearlessly. I look forward to meeting you all soon!

Joshua Fry

To start at the beginning, I did my DTS at Holmsted Manor in England way back in 1997 (before we had all these fancy themes). I knew before I left that I wanted to come back into YWAM and be involved in other ways, but it took just under 9 years to make that a reality. During the in-between time I got a degree in Economics, travelled a lot and started climbing as much as I could. So that’s when I first came to YWAM Oxford to staff a couple Backpacker DTS’s, and I loved it! This place became my home.

After my time in Oxford, the Lord then led me to Lausanne, Switzerland to do the Bible Core Course and then to stay on as base staff in communications, transportation and food services. I then did some amazing training in Tacoma, Washington before moving down to Brazil to help take care of a house full of children with HIV for two years. Quite an adventure, ask me about it some time.

Shortly after that God led me back here to Oxford to pioneer a Climbers DTS, and I eventually moved into helping to support other leaders as well. I love seeing people grow and change, and I strongly believe in the DTS program as an amazing way to help facilitate that process.

Rebecca Estenson

Hi, friends! My name is Rebecca and I'm from California, USA. I'm 24 and a lover of coffee and all things outdoors!

I did my DTS here at YWAM Oxford back in 2015 with the Backpacker's school. I chose to do a DTS because I hit a point in life where I felt purposeless and lost. I had no real identity, but I knew I loved Jesus. Even with that, I didn't know how to live it out. Coming to DTS, I didn't know what to expect, but God met me in ways I couldn't have even imagined. Through DTS I found freedom in my identity with God. He showed me that my heart for Him creates a life full of joy.

I chose to come back and staff the backpackers DTS because I wanted to help people come into the same place of freedom with God while exploring his beautiful creation. When I'm not staffing with DTS, I'll get to serve as base staff. I will be able to use my administrative gifts, helping run the office and behind the scenes work while the other DTS schools run, providing assistance to the other schools and guests. Serving in both ways gives me the opportunity to not only serve in a DTS but to help YWAM Oxford as a whole, coming full circle in support, love and community life. I'm super stoked for this season and can't wait to get to know each one of you in whatever role I serve in!

Trust Members

The YWAM Christchurch Inc. trust are a fine group of individuals who oversee the operations and financial aspects of the base. Not only do they provide basic oversight in the practical operations but they also provide spiritual wisdom, accountability, and love to spend time with students when they can.

Peter Brown

I grew up in Christchurch. Married to Christine in 1966 for 48 and a half years until her death in 2015. I have 6 children and 17 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren. We always sought to follow God’s will and consequently we lived in Christian communities in Christchurch, Oxford and Havelock in the Marlborough sounds. Came to Oxford in 1976-1983 and bought the main house here at YWAM Oxford which at that time was called Providence. Came in contact with YWAM then when the “Anastasis” Ship came to NZ. We hosted the Toymaker and Son outreach team from the ship. Our heart was for people and we always had extras staying for many different reasons. As a consequence we often sent them on DTS’s and later in Havelock we pioneered Kings Kids in the South Island. At that stage in the 1990’s we became involved in the YWAM Trust here also. Our heart was to see young people come to know the Lord and be established in his ways by knowing God as our Heavenly Father and being equipped to follow him wherever he may lead. My heart is to see God’s work here in Oxford develop and grow.

Paulo Moreira

I grew up in Brazil - family of 5. Occasionally I went to a local Catholic Church but when I was 12 my family starting going to a Presbyterian Church in which we got baptised. I remember during the Summer, to attend Sunday School we would walk 4km to church in 38\40 C temperatures just to arrive on time at midday.

At the age of 15 I lost my mother, she was only 43 years of age, but we continue to go to the church. On that year my older brother move to another state for a better job and about 2 years later my sister got married. I went to stay with my dad for a couple of years, then he, like my brother, moved away to find a job. At that point I moved in with my uncle and aunty plus their 6 kids and Grandma as well. I stayed with them until I completed my studies, then I followed in my brother and father's footsteps, moved out of state and got a job working for the Brazilian government. After about 6 years in this job God called me to YWAM.

I did my DTS at a base in the center of Brazil and from there I moved South where YWAM was just opening a new base. From there we sent Ywamers to Uruguay and for a time I led teams there too. It wasn't long before we decided to open a base in Uruguay that had Summer Schools and evangelism training and not long after that we started our first DTS schools.

I spent 10 years in Ywam Brazil, 18 months in Uruguay and 5 and half years at the base in Oxford. I did a few Schools here, I went to Bangladesh for our outreach and now I am part of the YWAM Oxford Trust.

I believe God called me to to be an intercessor and I have a passion for loving and helping people. I love studying God's character and how He manifests Himself in Nature.

My hobbies include: collecting coins, bank notes and stamps from all nations.

James Smith

Coming soon...

Noah Cremisino

Son of the One. Graphic artist. Web designer. Illustrator. Thinker. Reader. Good-food-eater. Bikes. Hikes. Waterfall hunter. Guac maker. Wood whittler. Schemer. Dreamer. Broken-thing-fixer. Jesus follower. Box-breaker. Dad. Husband. Lifestyle missionary.

I was born in California, grew up in Colorado and received a call from God to New Zealand at the age of 21. Nine years after hearing this call (in 2010) my wife and I got the "Go" word and so we off-loaded most of our personal belongings and boarded a one-way flight to Christchurch. Through trials and blessings a-plenty we've pursued the heart of God for this city, seeking to put hands and feet to the vision God has for Christchurch and for the nation of Aotearoa. It is our great hope and desire that His Kingdom will come powerfully and saturate every corner of New Zealand society.

It's a huge privilege to serve with YWAM Oxford. God knew what He was doing when He knit us in with this family and blessed us with an amazing community of mission-minded, God-submitted, Jesus-loving people to surround ourselves with. I'm grateful for the opportunity to serve the base in various ways and am greatly humbled and honored to be part of this incredible group of wise leaders known as the YWAM Oxford trust.

Carolyn Chisholm

Hi, my name is Carolyn and I live in Christchurch, New Zealand.

Background... From soon after YWAM began in New Zealand, my late husband Tim and I have been involved in a variety of ways. We took our five children to Kona in 1983 to attend a Crossroads DTS expecting to go in to long term missions. However God led us back to NZ and to Christchurch where Tim continued to serve as an Anglican vicar. I trained as a social worker working with children and families in need as well as serving at our church in pastoral care.

Ministry wise I'm a jack-of-all-trades. Currently I mentor students attending Bible College from Grace Vineyard Church, the church I attend. Over the years in YWAM I have cooked, gardened, taught, staffed DTS's and in 2009 I pioneered and led the Father's Love CDTS at Oxford for a number of years before handing it to the current leaders. I have been privileged to do a number of short term mission trips both overseas and in NZ.

I love to paint, grow fresh fruit and vegetables, hike, and currently I attend Te Reo Maori lessons. I also love spending time with family which now includes 12 amazing grandchildren (every grandmother knows how amazing their grandchildren are!!)

My greatest passion is to journey with people as they experience Father God's love for them and explore the freedom found in living as His sons and daughters.

Barry Inch

Coming soon...

Roger Philpott

My name is Roger Philpott. Married to Julie for 55 years, we have four adult children and eleven grandchildren and one great grandson. We appreciate the value of YWAM and its emphasis on young people and families. Two of our daughters have been in YWAM for a number of years and we joined in 1997 with a Crossroads DTS followed by a SBS.

We spent eleven years at YWAM Oxford leading the Biblical Core Course. We also pioneered a BCC in England at the “Kings Lodge” base. We want to see the Oxford base continue to train and send people of all ages to spread the Good News of Jesus.

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