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BELMOND, IA — When it comes to helping others, one north Iowa woman goes further than most and now she’s encouraging the youth to consider doing the same.
Alissa Qaranivalu is a missionary who at a young age made a commitment to spreading the message of God to those less fortunate and now shes calling on the youth to volunteer.
“We have a lot of 18, 19, 20 year olds that weren’t quite sure what they wanna do, or even quite sure what their skills or talents are and what we try and do is just give them an opportunity,” said Alissa.
Alissa acknowledges the pressure that can come with trying to be a young missionary. Its a challenge, something that Alissa says was difficult to overcome.
“God said either put your all into your career or come follow me and i’ll take you around the world. So thats when I decided to give up my career, which everyone thought I was crazy, giving up the 401K plan and everything. I took the risk and after I came back from Samoa, I knew that I was hooked,” said Alissa.
Lucky for Alissa, she’s not alone. She and her husband grew up in completely different continents, however their love for spreading the message of faith has developed into now two careers of missionary work.
Like many missionaries, this couple has traveled a variety of different locations, but as one friend puts it, she believes Alissa was born for this.
“She’s able to integrate into these wildly different cultures and make a connection with people, and she has such a calm demeanor about things and shes a very caring person,” said long-time friend, Joslyn Stock.
Its a journey very few people get to take and for Alissa, its turned into a passion for teaching.
“They have a vague concept of Jesus but its for the western world not for their world. So you encounter a different type of barrier when you go into these cultures and in a way its fun because you get to tell people the story for the first time,” said Alissa.
For more on how you can get involved, visit: