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The History of Sonshine Ministries/Servant Care International

 

The Dream and the Journey:

A Historical Perspective from the Founders,

Bill and Doris Steinberg    

 

"Your opponent is winning the game, and your team is one man short! It's time to get out of the bleachers and into the action." These words penetrated the hearts of Bill and Doris Steinberg as they attended a life management seminar in the summer of 1989. At that seminar, they were challenged to write a mission statement concerning how they, as a couple, could apply their experience, talents, and spiritual gifts to fulfilling The Great Commission. 

 

As Bill and Doris began to write their mission statement, the idea of providing affordable, furnished housing for missionaries was planted in their minds. They had heard that many missionaries leave the mission field because of burnout and that they often spend their home assignment (furlough) staying with friends and relatives, rather than having a time of rest and refreshment. The Steinbergs recognized that, if they could help meet the housing needs of missionaries on furlough, they could have a part in strengthening the cause of Christ around the world. In answer to their prayers, the Lord continued to provide direction, and in 1990, Bill and Doris formed and incorporated Sonshine Ministries.

 

In 1992, God brought together a prayer team of several individuals who were committed to praying for the Lord's direction and provision. He then led them to the property for the apartment building and put together the plan. The groundbreaking took place on April 1, 1993. With the help of many volunteers, the building was completed and dedicated in the summer of 1994. Since then, missionaries from all over the world have come to stay at Sonshine Apartments.

 

Over the years, Bill and Doris were involved in many endeavors to unite the church and bring people to Christ. They sponsored all-expense-paid getaways for pastors and their wives, pastors’ wives nights out, and prayer summits designed to bring Christian leadership together. They were also instrumental in beginning Christmas Gatherings, which were tremendous outreaches to neighbors, co-workers, and family members.

 

In 1999, Sonshine Ministries purchased Northhaven Condominium in Fish Creek, Wisconsin, for the purpose of providing rest and relaxation for pastors and their families.

 

After a prolonged illness, Bill went to be with the Lord in 2012. Doris retired from the ministry and moved to Neenah, Wisconsin, in November of 2013. 

 

In November of 2013, after serving in pastoral ministry in the States for 13 years, and as missionaries in Austria for three years, Bill and Sue Stukenberg took over as the directors of Sonshine Ministries. In November of 2016, to better reflect its purpose and vision, the name of the ministry was changed to Servant Care International.