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Pilot relishes travel, rural life & new role as youth minister

MARCELINE, Mo. (BP)–Next time you’re flying TWA, take a close look at the pilot. It could be Marty Cupp, a bivocational youth minister from Bethany Baptist Church, Marceline, Mo.
“It’s all I ever wanted to do,” said Cupp, who has been a pilot for 13 years. “I’ve got a front office with a view of the world.”
He has flown to nearly every major city in the United States, plus Jamaica and Cancun, Mexico. The view influences his outlook on creation. “When I look out the window and see what I see, I have a hard time believing in the theory of evolution.”
This summer, Cupp also became the youth minister for his home church. Pastor Martin Baker said, “I was praying for a youth minister, and the Lord said to me, ‘Why are you waiting for resumes, when you’ve got somebody right here?'”
The arrangement works out nicely because Cupp already was involved with young people by substitute teaching at a local school. “I haven’t had training to be a youth minister, but I love kids, and I know what it takes to stay out of trouble,” he said. “Flying is a job I love to do, but if I ever would do anything else, I’d probably be a kindergarten teacher.”
His wife, Mary, is a high school teacher. “People ask me all the time if I worry about him being a pilot, especially after a crash,” Mary said. “I feel safer knowing he’s in an airplane rather than driving a vehicle because, while he’s a conscientious pilot, he doesn’t always carry that over to a car — he likes to look out the window a lot.”
Both said his flight schedule works well for them. He’s usually home at least three days a week, including Sundays. Now, he also makes it a point to be home on Tuesdays — so he can attend childbirth classes with his wife. They are expecting their first child in December.
“I get to leave work behind — it’s hard to bring an airplane home with you — come to a small town and enjoy myself,” Cupp reflected. “I help my father-in-law farm, substitute teach, water ski — do all this in an area where there’s no rush hour and no traffic jams. I feel like I’ve got it about as good as it can get.”

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  • Stacey Hamby