Leadership & Staff


  Meet Our New Life Staff


Ralph Eaton

Hi. I am Ralph Eaton and love what I do. I am happily married to a wonderful and beautiful wife by the name of Kellie. We have been married for 41 years and have 3 grown sons, There beautiful daughter-in-laws, 11 wonderful grandkids. I have been in ministry for nearly 39 years.

My background in ministry includes teaching, mentoring and counseling — including a graduate degree in marriage and family therapy and many hours of marriage and family counseling.

I came to New Life Family about 13 years ago, when the Church was at a major crossroads. Because they were struggling with attendance and finances, the congregation was contemplating whether to sell, relocate or even close their doors as a Church. I met with New Life's leadership and accepted their invitation to restart New Life with new vision, purpose and life. I believe God's Church to be the greatest change force in the world because of the way God can work through others. I want to see New Life be a part of that force!

I believe the Church to be a place to find love, acceptance, guidance and encouragement. Because of that, New life is a place where we love and celebrate God as we value and share life together, reaching others and growing through each experience. I know that I must tell others about this life-changing God, because if I cannot "mention him or speak any more in his name" his word is in my heart like a fire, a fire shut up in my bones. I am weary of holding it in; indeed, I cannot." Jeremiah 20:9 (NIV). Come visit us at New Life and see what God has for you!


Started at New Life: June 1, 2005 



  • Wife Kellie Eaton
  • 3 sons: James, Justin & Jacob Eaton
  • Daughter-in-laws: Angela, Jerelyn & Emily
  • 4 grandsons: Brody, Triston, Knox & Beckett
  • 6 granddaughters: Marie, Gracy, Danika, Ellie, Ramie, Jovie and Hollis


Favorite books of bible:

  • Proverbs
  • Philippians
  • 1 John


Favorite movies:

  • It's A Wonderful Life
  • Jurassic Park Series
  • The Blind Side


Favorite books:

  • Good to Great by Jim Collins
  • Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren
  • Wild at Heart by John Eldredge
  • Communicating for a Change by Andy Stanley & Lane Jones
  • Celebration of Discipline by Richard Foster
  • Developing the Leader in You by John Maxwell
  • Courageous Leadership by Bill Hybels
  • The Safest Place on Earth by Larry Crabb
  • Comeback Churches by Ed Stetzer & Mike Dodson


What I like best about my ministry: It allows me to offer the greatest life changing product to the world, Grace! 


For fun I enjoy: spending time with my wife, kids and grandkids! 


Hobby: Gardening


Email: ralpheaton@newlifefamilykc.org


Ralph Testerman 

My name is Ralph Testerman and I currently lead the children's ministry here at New Life Family Church. I am married to my wonderful wife Susan and we have three busy boys at home. I have been involved in children's ministry for well over 20 years. In addition to serving at New Life, I serve as a chaplain with hospice. 

I love teaching children and adults and have been involved with churches in Kansas, Missouri and Pennsylvania. I have a master's degree In Christian Education and have a passion for helping people come to a full understanding of the love of God. My goal for the families of New Life is to create environments and opportunities for families to learn together and help their children come to a fuller understanding of God's love. 

My favorite Bible verse is Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." 

My favorite Bible character is Joseph because he displays how people can overcome adversity in their life and come find the amazing blessings of God. 

When I am not teaching at New Life I enjoy hanging out with my family, watching movies, working out and working in the yard. 

If you have any questions about the children's ministry or wish to serve please feel free to email me at ralph_testerman @yahoo.com


Kristen Johnson

Chris and Kristen JohnsonMy name is Kristen Johnson and I am the Director of Worship Arts here at New Life Family Church. I married my awesome husband, Chris, in February of 2014, and we have three fur children who like to keep my feet warm while I'm working from home. 
I have always had a passion for music, and have been a part of many choirs and worship teams over the last 20 years. I have been on staff here at New Life since April of 2016, and I count it a privilege leading worship each week. 
My favorite Bible Verses are Philippians 4:6-7"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to the Lord. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus."I also love the Psalms. 
When I'm not working I enjoy reading, drinking coffee, taking day trips with my handsome hubby, and spending time with friends and family.


Robin Patterson

Food Pantry LeaderHello everyone! My name is Robin Patterson. I am the Food Pantry Ministry Director at New Life Family Church. I came to New Life about 7 years ago. The first time I walked through the doors, I knew I was "home". 

Six years ago, I became the "food guy" and love what I do. Before that, after 3 unsuccessful back surgeries, I was told that I would be in a wheelchair by the time I was 50 or so. And it was happening slowly. I found myself in constant pain and was falling quite often. But what the doctors didn't know was God had a plan for me and it didn't include a wheelchair. Everyday I hop out of the bed, eager to be God's servant! 

I'm currently widowed, but blessed to have had 24 wonderful years with my wife, Ruthie. I am a father to 6 daughters and one son. I have 7 grandchildren. 


Favorite Bible verses:

For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. ~ Jeremiah 29:11 

For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in. ~ Matthew 25:35 


Favorite Quotes:

John Bunyan — 'You have not lived today until you have done something for someone who can never repay you.' 

"The church is not a museum for saints but a hospital for sinners."? Morton T. Kelsey


Mary Gleissner

Hello! My name is Mary. I have been with New Life Family Church for about 5 ½ years. I moved from Lincoln, Nebraska, where I was born and raised until I moved to Olathe, Kansas, in 2011. My passion for most of my life has been to help others. I was a member of the American Red Cross (First Aid Team, and Disaster Action Team) and the Lancaster County Emergency Management for 35 years and 25 years, respectively. I am also a trauma survivor! So after moving to Kansas, I learned that I have PTSD. With knowing that, I have had to retrain myself. My fiancé Jim introduced me to Pastor Ralph Eaton at New Life. As my therapy continues, so does my love for helping people in our church and beyond! In 2015 I discovered my dream for continuing to help people. So I approached Pastor Ralph at our Vision Retreat with my idea to be the Wedding Coordinator at New Life. Soon after, Pastor Ralph asked if I would like to take on other tasks including taking over the church calendar! So that is where the Facility Coordinator title came in. 


I treat everyone with the respect and kindness that I would expect in return! So I am here to help start a couples' new life together a beautiful and caring transition and helping our church family and our community have a safe facility for using our gym for numerous different kinds of events!



  • Spouse Jim 
  • Step Daughter Amanda 
  • Step Son Bobby 
  • Casey, my "therapy dog" that came with me from Lincoln 


Favorite books of the Bible: 

  • Psalm 23 
  • James 


Favorite movies: 

  • Pretty Woman 
  • Sister Act 1 & 2 
  • Erin Brockovich 
  • Harry Potter series 
  • Working Girl 


For fun I enjoy: Seeing new places around Kansas City, bike riding 


Hobby: Gardening, playing my Tenor Saxophone 

Email: marygleissner@newlifefamilykc.org


Alexa Murphy

Email: alexa.murphy@indiancreek.org



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