“PAZTUH MIKE” WUEBBLES
Mike Wuebbles, better known as “Paztuh Mike,” has always followed his passions.
In his early years, those passions revolved around women, drugs, drinking, and money. Like many young men with no consistent father figure in their lives and limited access to positive role models, Mike turned to the streets to shape his identity. He was steeped in the fast life and had aspirations of becoming a rap superstar. At 18 years old, Mike started Minime Studio Productions (MSP), a recording studio based in Belleville, Illinois that gained traction in and around Clinton County, Illinois, as well.
Mike’s music career began to take off and before long, he had multi-million dollar record deals at his fingertips. But despite the chance for money and fame, Mike couldn’t deny the steady pull on his heart away from his irreverent lifestyle. His stirring for something different began in his late teens with simple talks about Jesus with his grandmother. As years passed and Mike began to pursue a deeper relationship with God, he often found himself caught between two worlds—one that promised fast money, popularity, and access to all the selfish indulgences he could possibly want; the other based on a sincere commitment to Jesus Christ and selfless service to others.
Mike eventually made a firm decision to pursue the path that God had for him, not knowing what was ahead, but certain he had made the right choice. He spent the next several years under the tutelage and leadership of Ron Haynes, a St. Louis-based street evangelist who ran Project STL. With Ron’s guidance, Mike learned keys to successful street evangelism and the sacrifice it takes to truly serve others at all costs.
Today, Mike is an ordained minister (hence, Paztuh Mike) and founder of the new and improved MSP—Men Standing Positive. MSP focuses on street evangelism and case management for residents in low-income urban communities. The group’s mission is to empower and inspire men, women, and children by offering them wholeness, change, and peace of mind. Various community outreaches, conferences, events, and programs make this possible.
Although leading MSP and bearing the responsibility of teaching God’s Word has its share of hardships and challenges, Paztuh Mike wouldn’t have it any other way. Jesus Christ is his life now…his number one passion.
Paztuh Mike and his wife, Anna, work side-by-side—with a great staff and invaluable volunteers—to fulfill the mission and vision of MSP. They consider it a privilege to oversee the organization and to share one common goal. Plus, they have fun working with each other. Paztuh Mike and Anna look forward to all that’s ahead for them and for MSP because they know they’re in it together.
For as long as he can remember, Bill Neumann has had a heart to serve. His service began as a little boy when he took on two newspaper routes and mowed lawns, jobs that taught him responsibility and the importance of keeping commitments. He also was a regular help on his grandfather’s farm as he got older. Bill followed his pursuit of service into adulthood and became a police officer in the early 1960s, but it didn’t take long for him to realize that serving on the police force was not his long-term destiny. Yet, during that time, Bill’s true calling began to unfold.
He married Mary in 1962 and, through his wife’s encouragement, became an active participant in his church’s ministry endeavors. Bill had grown up in church, but for many years was satisfied just attending services. After getting married, he became a church elder at Webster Gardens Lutheran Church and was a member of their evangelistic team. Despite his regular church involvement, however, it wasn’t until the mid-1990s that Bill began to understand how to genuinely carry the message of grace and the heart of Christ to others.
In 2007, while Bill was a member of Destiny Church, he took part in the church’s monthly outreach to residents in North St. Louis. On his own time, Bill walked the streets in the area to minister, counsel, and become a trusted friend. He always looked for ways to improve the lives of people that others thought were expendable. That desire to help those in need led Bill and Mary to sponsor a mission center for four years. Through that process, they eventually formed the nonprofit, Changing Lives Today. They provided food, held church services, hosted Bible studies, and supported several other organizations. In 2012, Bill and Mary expanded their outreach by purchasing an abandoned building near the mission center and creating a transition home for women. Although specific ministries have changed over the years, Changing Lives Today is still active and currently focuses on street ministry and multiple prison outreaches at the Missouri Eastern Correctional Center.
A few years ago, Bill also began to work with Men Standing Positive (MSP), a street evangelism ministry founded by Mike “Paztuh Mike” Wuebbles. Bill was drawn to Paztuh Mike’s obvious commitment to being a carrier and deliverer of Jesus Christ and the group’s ability to connect the dots between the spiritual and physical needs of people. Today, Bill is the community outreach leader for MSP, a role that allows him to train others on how to work effectively with individuals and families in the communities MSP serves. He sees himself as just one ingredient in all that MSP is doing and relishes his role as a connector of people and a support to help Paztuh Mike and the MSP team fulfill their overall vision. In addition to Changing Lives Today and MSP, Bill recently joined I2I (Incarceration to Incorporation), an organization designed to help formerly incarcerated individuals successfully transition back into society.