Andrew Ray Twibell, 36, passed away Monday morning, June 8, 2020, at his residence following a long illness.
Andrew was born October 21, 1983, in Muncie, the son of Barry and Renee Samples Twibell. He attended Burris Laboratory School and graduated from Heritage Hall Christian School, Muncie, in 2002, where he served as class president and was a member of many successful athletic and academic teams.
Andrew graduated from Olivet Nazarene University in 2006 with his Bachelors of Science in Biology and with his Masters of Arts in Religion in 2007. As an undergraduate student, Andrew served as class president during his sophomore year and as student body president during his junior and senior years. Following his college career, Andrew served as a resident director for 4 years on the campus of Olivet.
In 2010, Andrew enrolled at Asbury Theological Seminary, Wilmore, Kentucky and graduated in 2013 with a Masters of Divinity. Andrew was ordained as an elder in the Church of the Nazarene in 2013. Following three years of meaningful pastoral ministry at Grace Community Church in Nicholasville, Kentucky, Andrew and his family moved back to Bourbonnais, Illinois, where he served as the Assistant District Superintendent for the Chicago Central District of the Church of the Nazarene.
In 2017, Andrew was called to serve as the Lead Pastor of Kankakee First Church of the Nazarene, Kankakee, IL. Andrew’s life and ministry reflected the heart of Jesus. While intensely battling cancer, he walked 1000 miles in one year to support the mission of the church he pastored. Residents of the Bradley-Bourbonnais area will remember seeing Andrew walking many miles a day in rain and snow, early morning and late at night. He reached his goal in February, 2020.
Andrew served on district and national leadership committees for the Church of the Nazarene and authored several articles for denominational publications. Along with his wife Simone, he led many mission trips to Central and South America and Europe. Andrew and Simone served as volunteer missionaries in the Meso-American Region of the Church of the Nazarene.
More important to Andrew than all of his many life accomplishments was his deep faith in God and his relationships with family and friends. He was a committed and loving father to his children, Lucas and Sofia, and he deeply cherished his wife of 12 years, Simone. He was a student of God’s word and lived out his faith by serving others. On his journey of suffering, he embraced humility, gratitude and worship. To know Andrew was to love Andrew, and those who knew him learned much from him. His greatest desire in life was to see lives transformed by God’s redemptive grace.
He is survived by his wife, Simone; son Lucas Andres; daughter Sofia Caris of Bourbonnais, IL; his parents of Muncie, IN; grandfather Glen A. Twibell, Muncie; two brothers Cory (Jamie) Twibell, Centennial, CO and Craig (Amber) Twibell, Jacksonville, FL; mother- and father-in-law Alfredo and Rute Mulieri, Buenos Aires, Argentina; two sisters-in-law, Aline of Buenos Aires and Beth (Devin) Harwell, Littleton, CO; a sister Carrie (Matt) Good, Texas; aunts and uncles Cindy (Kip) Gross, Hartford City, IN; Teresa Dittus, Muncie, IN; Scott (Jan) Twibell, Muncie; J.R. Samples (Megan) Aurora, IL; Douglas (Cheryl) Samples, Oklahoma City, OK; nephews Ethan J. Twibell and Cam J. Twibell of Littleton; Elijah A. Twibell of Muncie; a niece Avery Renee of Littleton; and cousins Jamie (Char) Gross, Bloomington, IN; Travis (fiancee’ Courtney) of Hartford City; Jordan (Zach) Rabenstein of Muncie; Heather (John) Troupe of Muncie; Sean (Michelle) Dittus of Knoxville, TN; Matt (Meghen) Samples of Kankakee, IL; and Jessica (Bradley) Carter of Zionsville, IN, and many friends around the world.
Andrew was preceded in death by his brother Christopher Twibell, grandparents Mary Twibell and James and Naomi Strickland Samples.
The family sincerely thanks the Lou and Jean Malnati Brain Tumor Institute of the Lurie Cancer Center at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Chicago, IL, for their exquisite and innovative care.
Funeral services will be held at 11:00 am, Saturday, June 13, 2020, at Middletown Church of the Nazarene, 698 N. Fifth Street, Middletown, IN, with Dr. Philip Rogers, Rev. Paul Johnson, and Rev. Woody Webb officiating. Burial will follow in Garden of Memories Cemetery, Muncie, IN.
Family and friends may call at Middletown Church of the Nazarene, 698 N. Fifth Street, Middletown, IN, from 3:00 - 7:00 pm Friday, June 12, and one hour before the service. ALL SERVICES ARE OPEN TO THE PUBLIC WITH SOCIAL DISTANCING AND CDC RECOMMENDATIONS.
On Monday, June 15, a drive-by memorial event will be held near Centennial Chapel on the campus of Olivet Nazarene University from 4:00 - 7:00 pm to commemorate Andrew and express condolences.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Twibell Family Memorial Fund through Kankakee First Church of the Nazarene, 1000 N. Entrance Ave., Kankakee, IL, 60901. While gifts are not tax-deductible, 100% of gifts will go into a trust for the children, who were Andrew’s greatest life investment. Checks can be mailed to the church, or instructions for giving online are available on the church website k1.church.
Online condolences may be directed to the family at www.ballardandsons.com
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