For the past thirty years, Steve’s heart has been dedicated to glorifying God and His Word by advancing the gospel of Jesus Christ. His ministry began when he was ordained by New Tribes Mission (1978). Steve and his wife Mary, moved to Indonesia where he served as a pioneer church planter for seventeen years (1979-1995).
After language learning and a period of extensive aerial and foot surveys of isolated tribal groups in eastern Indonesia, Steve, Mary, and their partners moved to a remote Molucaan island (1983) to begin a thirteen year ministry among the Taliabo people who had no knowledge of God. During those years, God chose to demonstrate the power and sufficiency of His Word in Taliabo lives as they were evangelized (1987), taught, and brought together in a local church. Indigenous leadership was ordained (1995) and the missionaries moved off-site. Today the church remains strong and evangelistic. The Taliabo work has been documented in two videos, The Taliabo Story and Delivered from the Power of Darkness.
Steve and his family moved to California (1996) to study at The Master’s Seminary (M.Div., 2001) and serve at Grace Community Church. He later joined the pastoral team overseeing local evangelism and international ministries, served as an elder at Grace, and as an adjunct professor at TMS. He assumed the responsibilites as the Executive Director for White Fields (2002-2007), a mission organization that facilitates the church-planting efforts of over one hundred national pastors throughout the world.
Currently, Steve is the founder and director of LifeGate Worldwide, an organization dedicated to evangelism and church-planting. LifeGate is also the vehicle for The Chronicles of Redemption, an evangelistic course tracing the redemptive elements contained in both Old Testament narratives and the Gospels. The materials have been translated into over ten languages.
He is also the lead pastor of Beacon of Hope Church in St. Paul, MN. The church plant launched in 2009.
The Lonettis have two grown children, Joseph and Amanda Clare.