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Ends of the Earth
Daniel Felton On A Mission: Alaska to Australia
Felton @ Shores Daniel Felton sat waist deep in the early morning blown out junk amid hundreds of longboarders.  His board poised for a late take off, quick drop and whatever else he could salvage.  He sat patiently for several minutes.

"What's the protocol here?" he asked a nearby longboarder who'd paddled out at the same time.

"Protocol?  Just catch whatever you can, whenever you can and try not to smack the gremmies inside," was his reply.

That's when the show began.  Despite the crowd, the mushy waves and the cow-eyed kooks floundering in front of him, Felton put on a show with snap turns followed by off-the-lips and all the other moves shortboarders make.

Saturday morning.  La Jolla Shores.  Summer.

Felton wasn't surfing for himself, but for a higher authority.  During his childhood in Alaska he'd cast his net for herring in Prince William Sound and the Bering Sea.  Today he is a fisher of men in Australia.

During his studies at Fuller Seminary, the young surfer understood his calling.

"I came to the profound realization while in school or soon after that I loved surfing for a reason," he says.  "That I was created to fill a niche and reach out to people that other seminary students could not reach.  Trying to change the core of who God had created me to be was like trying to keep the sun from setting."

Daniel setting up
Courtesy Felton family collection

Married and the father of a young son, Felton knew a missionary's life would be difficult.  But after looking at opportunities available, he knew Youth With A Mission (YWAM) in Australia was his calling.  After a visit to the Sunshine Coast with his wife, he knew exactly where he should be.

"Missions is something I am devoted to because nothing beats leading someone else into a relationship with their Creator."

Now, settled in a apartment near Alex Headland, the Feltons are working toward their goal.

"The organization's goal is to plant churches or YWAM bases on every island from Bali to Timor," he says.  "We want to impact the local surf community by volunteering to help in contests, going on surf trips with local students and other activities."

While being a missionary in Australia is a bit different than serving in Darkest Africa or a remote tropical island, Felton says the work is challenging and with the same purpose as those in other parts of the world--to bring the word of God to those who don't know Him.

"How do all these things fit together?" he asks rhetorically.  "I have to tell you that God has to come first.  Without Him, none of this would be possible."