About Christian Home Exchange

Our Founders

Dell and Diane Shiell

St. Hans Ministry Exchange, Inc. (D.B.A. Christian Home Exchange) was founded in 1991 by Diane Shiell and the Rev. Dr. Dell Shiell.

Diane and Dell are originally from Minneapolis, Minnesota where both graduated from the University of Minnesota. Dell earned his Master of Divinity and Doctor of Ministry from Luther Seminary, St. Paul, Minnesota. Dell served as a parish pastor in Porter, Minnesota, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Venice, Florida, and North Port, Florida. In 2016, Dell retired from parish ministry. In retirement, Dell served as interim pastor in Sarasota, Florida and Nokomis, Florida.

Currently, Diane and Dell live in Punta Gorda, Florida, USA. Their three children are married and living in Florida, also.

 Our History

Christian Home Exchange is a service of St. Hans Ministry Exchange, Inc., a nonprofit organization recognized in the USA as a tax-exempt organization.

The purpose of St. Hans, a public charity, is to spread the gospel of Jesus Christ, with a special interest in the practice of home and ministry exchanges among Christians.

Diane and Dell—and their three children—participated in a home exchange with a clergy family from Larvik, Norway during 1988-1989. In 1992, Diane and Dell wrote a book, Fair Exchange: A Ministry Exchange Between the USA and Norway, in which they share their reflections on their family's exchange.

In 1992, the Internet was still in its infancy, so Diane and Dell used more conventional ways of trying to help others catch the vision of Christian home and ministry exchanges—regular mail, articles in newspaper and church newsletters, numerous radio interviews, etc. A few exchanges resulted from those efforts, but it was difficult to reach many people on a limited budget.

In 1995, the World Wide Web began to be widely used and we recognized it was the perfect vehicle for promoting home exchanges. Dell spent the month of June, 1995 learning how to create a website and St. Hans launched the very first Christian Home Exchange website in July, 1995.

In the past, our organization was affiliated with various home exchange networks, but no longer maintains such affiliations. Now, our home exchange efforts are focused exclusively on maintaining the Christian Home Exchange website.

"Exchanging" is a fun way to enrich your family, your church, your community, and you. We hope you and your family discover this for yourselves.

We encourage vacation homes swap and ministry exchanges among Christians from around the world. For some, home exchanges are a retreat or study leave—A Clergy Sabbatical. For others, the home exchange may be a break from everyday routines or holiday—A Vacation With A Mission™. All those who experience a Christian Home Exchange share in common their faith during their house exchange for a specified period of time.

Our Statement Of Faith

St. Hans Ministry Exchange Inc. serves the community of those who believe in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior as testified to in John 3:16 and The Apostles’ Creed.

Our Logo

Our logo incorporates a symbol for Christian baptism—the seashell and water-drops.  The water-drops enter an ocean (represented by the wave) of worldwide Christian unity.