Ministry Spotlight: the Kanagys

Two Couples, One Calling


When Lance and Luke Kanagy were five and six- years old, they would tie pieces of cardboard to their arms and “fly” off banks and hillsides in their childhood home of Brazil. Two decades later, these brothers are preparing to serve as MAF pilots.

Luke and Lance’s parents and grandparents were missionaries. The brothers married women who had also grown up in Brazil as multi-generational missionary kids (MKs). They all felt a call to missions even if it wasn’t always clear what it would look like.

Luke and Jaalah Kanagy.

Both brothers had to overcome real or imagined roadblocks. “Too expensive.” “Too difficult.”

One day Luke thought, What If I never try?

“I would never find out what God could do through my life. Since then I have never looked back,” he said. Luke attended San Diego Christian College for his degree in aviation technology. His wife, Jaalah, attended Word of Life Bible Institute in New York and did a two-year internship in Brazil.

“I have vivid memories of my dad sharing the gospel with people he gave car rides to and my mom sharing the gospel from the kitchen counter,” said Jaalah. “I knew I wanted the gospel to be lived out in my life and that I wanted others to know Christ.”

Lance and Jessica Kanagy.

Lance remembers being a senior in high school and watching a plane fly overhead and saying to his mom, “I would love to be a pilot.” Her response: “Why not?” So Lance moved to the U.S. and earned his degree at Moody Bible Institute. His wife, Jessica, attended there as well and finished a degree in biblical studies.

“Ever since I was a kid I’ve thought, I want to do what my parents are doing. I saw the impact they had with the Xavante people in Brazil,” said Jessica, a fourth-generation missionary.

When they finally arrive on the field, the couples will be thousands of miles apart. Luke and Jaalah will be in Boa Vista, in northern Brazil, with Asas de Socorro (ASAS), an MAF affiliate. Lance and Jessica will serve with MAF in Papua, Indonesia.

The distance between them will be great, but the mission will be the same: sharing the love of Jesus with isolated people.

These two brothers will finally see their long-held passion for flying used in the Lord’s service. And these four grown MKs will add to their families’ legacies by making Christ known.


Would you like to play a part in bringing Christ’s love to isolated people in Brazil or Indonesia, or both? To find out more or to join a Kanagy team, visit and


This story originally appeared in the January 2020 issue of FlightWatch. Read the entire issue here: 

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