Mennonite Weekly Review - December, 1987

Mennonite Weekly Review
64th Year ­ No. 49 ­ Page 8
December 3, 1987


Funeral services for Jacob P. Nikkel, 85, of Goessel, were held Nov. 27 at Alexanderwohl Mennonite Church, rural Goessel, with Roland Goering officiating. Burial was in the church cemetery. He died Nov. 25 at Memorial Home for the Aged, Moundridge, where he had lived since February. He was a retired farmer and construction worker. Survivors include his wife, the former Eva Unrau; one son, Abe J. of Versailles, Mo.; five daughters, Josephine Voth of rural Newton, Doris Schmidt of Buhler, Arzella Dirksen of Denver, Orletta Goering of Portland, Ore., and Joyce Christopher of Olathe; one brother, Ted P. Nikkel of Goessel; two sisters, Esther Klassen and Matilda Unrau, both of Goessel; 16 grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.

Ben R. Regier, 88, of Buhler, formerly of Hutchinson, died Nov. 29 at Buhler Sunshine Home for the Aged. He was the brother of Sarah Peters, Newton. Services were held Dec. 1 at Elliott Chapel, Hutchinson. Burial was in the Hebron Church Cemetery, Buhler. A member of First Mennonite Church, Hutchinson, Regier was a former International Harvester employee. Other survivors include one brother, Abe, Moundridge; one additional sister, Rosella Jines, Perryton, Texas; four grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

Funeral services for Olga B. Unruh, 94, of Goessel, were held Nov. 30 at Alexanderwohl Mennonite Church, rural Goessel, with Roland Goering officiating. Burial was in the church cemetery. She died Nov. 27 at Bethesda Home, Goessel. Survivors include one daughter, Lenora Johnson of Wichita; one sister, Rebecca Voth of Goessel; five grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren. Her husband Frank, preceded her in death in 1973.

Bertha M. Stucky, 79, of Moundridge, died Nov. 26 at Mercy Hospital, Moundridge. Funeral services were held Nov. 29 at Eden Mennonite Church, rural Moundridge, with Don Longbottom and Orlo Kaufman officiating. Burial was in the church cemetery. Survivors include three sons, Duane of Hesston, Dean of Medicine Lodge and Delbert of Moundridge; one daughter, Delaine Schroeder of Wichita; one sister, Emma Bender of Newton; and 11 grandchildren.

64th Year ­ No. 50 ­ December 10, 1987 ­ Page 8


Selma Gaeddert Wiens, 87, a lifelong Inman resident, died Dec. 5 at Pleasant View Home, Inman. She was the mother of M. James Gaeddert of Newton. Funeral services were held Dec. 8 at Bethel Mennonite Church, rural Inman, with D.A. Raber officiating. Burial was in the Buhler Municipal Cemetery. A native of Lehigh, she married Rudolph A. Gaeddert in 1927. He died in 1963. In 1964 she married A.T. Wiens. He died in 1968. Other survivors include two daughters, eight grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.

64th Year ­ No. 51 ­ December 17, 1987 ­ Page 6


Indian Lay Leader Dies In Oklahoma at 76

Canton, Okla. (GCMC)-Mary Mae Pratt Meeks, an Arapaho Indian and lay leader and member of Zion Mennonite Church here, died Nov. 14 at the age of 76. Nearly 200 relatives and friends gathered near Geary, Okla., to bury Meeks' body in Arapaho soil. "Today from near and far we pay tribute to a great lady. What made her great? Her commitment to the Lord," said family friend Ralph Toahty. Meeks is survived by two daughters and two sons.


Former MBM Executive Committee Member Dies

Elkhart, Ind.-John Rittenhouse Clemens, a former executive committee member of Mennonite Board of Missions, died Nov. 3 in Pennsylvania. He was 76 Clemens served as vice-president of MBM from 1961 to 1967. He also served as secretary of Franconia Mennonite Board of Missions for 16 years and was active in the Mennonite Historians of Eastern Pennsylvania. He and his wife, Mildred, served two years in Ethiopia with Mennonite Central Committee; he served as business administrator at Nazareth Hospital and Clinic. A private funeral service was held Nov. 7 at Plain Mennonite Church, Lansdale, Pa., where he was a lifelong member. Survivors include his wife, three sons and a daughter.

Page 8


Susie Koehn, 103, of Moundridge, a homemaker and resident of Harvey and McPherson counties since 1893, died Dec. 13 at Moundridge Manor. Funeral services were held Dec. 16 at Gospel Church of God in Christ, Mennonite, Moundridge, with Doyle Johnson and Kenneth Koehn officiating. Burial was in the Lone Tree Church Cemetery, rural Galva. A native of Karlswalde, Russia, she moved to the U.S. in 1893. Survivors include six sons, Martin, Lewis, Chester and Robert, all of Moundridge, Herman of Canton and Leonard of Peabody; four daughters, Selma Koehn, Amanda Koehn and Laura Koehn, all of Moundridge, and Gloria Wiggers of Clarksdale, Miss.; two sisters, Elizabeth Boese of Moundridge and Adina Penner of Halstead; 22 grandchildren, 32 great-grandchildren and 11 great-great-grandchildren. Her husband, David, preceded her in death in 1974.

Funeral services were held Dec. 12 at Tabor Mennonite Church near Goessel for Clara Unruh, 82, of Goessel. Ray Hurst officiated. Burial was in the church cemetery. She died Dec. 9 at Bethel Deaconess Hospital, Newton. She had lived in Goessel since 1980, when she moved from Hesston. Survivors include two sons, Leroy D. of Bone Terri, Mo., and Eldon of DeSoto; one daughter, Adelyn Smith of Newton; one sister, Hulda Frey of Newton; eight grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren. Her husband, Peter A., preceded her in death in 1971.

Adieda M. Schmidt Ewy, 81, of Moundridge, died Dec. 14 at Moundridge Manor. Graveside services were scheduled for Dec. 17 at West Zion Mennonite Church Cemetery, Moundridge, followed by a memorial service at the church, with Valdo Petter officiating. Survivors include her husband, Herman; one son, Curtis, Wichita; one sister, Elma Anderson, Hesston, and two grandchildren.

64th Year ­ No. 52 ­ December 24, 1987 ­ Page 8


Funeral services for Catherine S. Becker, 90, of Moundridge and formerly of Hesston, were held Dec. 22 at Meridian Church of God in Christ, Mennonite, near Hesston. Franklin Wenger and Eldon Wenger officiated. Burial was in the church cemetery. She died Dec. 18 at Moundridge Manor, where she had lived since July 1976.

Funeral services for Christian H. Schmidt, 95, of Goessel, were held Dec. 21 at Tabor Mennonite Church, rural Goessel. A farmer, he died Dec. 17 at Bethesda Home for the Aged, Goessel. Survivors include two sisters-Rose Schmidt of Hesston and Mary Harms of Newton.

64th Year ­ No. 53 ­ December 31, 1987 ­ Page 2


Philippines Church Leader Dies at 68

Salunga, Pa.-The founder and chairman of the Missions Now Church in the Philippines and founder of the Philippine Mennonite Biblical Institute died Oct. 6. He was 68. Felonito Sacapano was a former army officer who learned about the teachings of Menno Simons in 1971 when he visited the U.S. to look for a North American agency to partner with Missions Now. He made contact with the Metamora (Ill.) Mennonite church. Missions Now dates to 1952 when Sacapano and his wife, Maria, began a Bible study in a home in Laguna. Today the church has 22 congregations and outreach fellowships with a membership of 2,500. The Bible institute was organized in 1979. Sacapano also organized Faith Woodcrafts, a family business which employs people to make carvings to sell through Mennonite Central Committee Self-help Crafts program. Eastern Mennonite Board of Missions worker Melvin Thomas, who worked closely with Sacapano from 1980 to 1985, described him as a pioneer and a church statesman, one who generously shared his goods and gave himself unsparingly to the work of the church. Sacapano is survived by his wife and seven children.

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Ice Patch Touches Off Chain Reaction

Kansas Chorus Director, Two Others Die in Five-Way Accident

Haven, Kan.-Paul Wohlgemuth of Tulsa, Okla., director of the Kansas Mennonite Men's Chorus, and two others died Dec. 28 in a five-vehicle accident on an icy stretch of Kansas highway 96 east of Haven. Also dead are Wohlgemuth's grandson, James Wohlgemuth, 2, of Tulsa, and Hutchinson Community College basketball star Cornell Bell, 19. The chain-reaction accident began when a car driven by Wichita television newscaster Sandra Cole went out of control without warning when it hit an ice patch on the otherwise clear road. The car skidded sideways and clipped the front left side of an oncoming semi. The semi then skidded into the other lane, colliding in turn with the Wohlgemuth car, the Bell car and a car driven by Hesston businessman Mike Achilles, before finally overturning in a ditch. Cole, Achilles and Achilles' son Ryan escaped injury. The truck driver, Brian Ackerson, was treated at a hospital and released. Two other passengers in the Wohlgemuth car were hospitalized in Wichita. Wohlgemuth's wife, Barbara, was reported in critical condition as of Dec. 29 with head and abdominal injuries, while grandson Timothy, 4, had been upgraded to fair condition. Authorities said no charges would be filed in the accident. All drivers were apparently proceeding at speeds under the posted limit. Wohlgemuth, 60, was raised in Fairview, Okla. He studied at Tabor College, Hillsboro, Kan., and Emporia (Kan.) State University, then became the first graduate of the D.M.A. program at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. He served as minister of music at the 10th Avenue Baptist Church in Los Angeles and was choral director at the Bible Institute of Los Angeles before joining the faculty at Tabor College in 1961. After 16 years at Tabor, he went to Oral Roberts University, Tulsa, where he was chairman of graduate studies in church music. Wohlgemuth had served as director of the Kansas Mennonite Men's Chorus since 1973. He leaves his wife; two sons, Steve of Tulsa and Gary of Wichita; a brother, Carl of Hesston; a stepbrother, Arthur of Elko, Nev.; his father, Ben of Hillsboro; and two grandchildren. Funeral services were announced for Jan. 2 at the Hillsboro Mennonite Brethren Church. Colleagues at Oral Roberts will plan an additional memorial service for him at Tulsa later in January. The service for James Wohlgemuth was announced for Jan. 1 at the Parkside MB Church, Tulsa. He is survived by his parents, Steve and Helen Wohlgemuth, and two brothers.

Page 5

Former MBM Staff Person Dies in Florida

Elkhart, Ind.-Clara Miller, formerly on the staff of Mennonite Board of Missions, died Nov. 3 in Sarasota, Fla., where she resided. Miller served as housekeeper and cook for one year in the late 1940s at Mennonite Board of Missions. Her husband, Dan, helped with construction of an MBM housing project. For eight years during the 1960s, the Millers served with MBM Mission Hostel in Elkhart. They were members of Belmont Mennonite Church, Elkhart, during this time. The Millers also served in voluntary service with MBM in Walsenburg and Colorado Springs, Colo., in 1974. Miller is survived by her husband and four sons. She was a member of Bay Shore Mennonite Church.


Martha Ewert Hodel, 81, of Hillsboro, a sister of Hazel Schmidt of Hesston, died Dec. 26 at Hillsboro. Funeral services were held Dec. 30 at the Hillsboro Mennonite Brethren Church, with Dennis Fast officiating. Burial was in the church cemetery. Other survivors include one son, Paul of San Jose, Calif.; four daughters, Evelyn Hodel of Dinuba, Calif., Norma Klemm of Canoga Park, Calif., Alice Jost and Evelina Klassen, both of Hillsboro; one other sister, Ethel Abrahams of Hillsboro; 17 grandchildren and 23 great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband, Ted F., in 1985, four brothers and four sisters.

Dora M. Froese Zielke, 75, a lifelong Buhler resident and mother of John L. Zielke of Hesston, died Dec. 28 at Hutchinson Hospital. Funeral services were set for Dec. 31 at Buhler Mennonite Church, with Bob Dalke officiating. Burial was scheduled that day in Buhler Municipal Cemetery. She was a member of the Buhler Mennonite Church and the Lily Dale Extension Homemakers Unit. Other survivors include one other son, three daughters, one brother, one sister, 11 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.

Funeral services for Jacob Whitesell, 78, of Halstead and formerly of Montezuma, were held Dec. 28 at Grace Mennonite Church, Halstead, with Paul and Dean Becker officiating. Burial was in Halstead Cemetery. A retired farmer who had lived at Halstead the last nine years, he died Dec. 25 at Halstead Hospital. Survivors include his wife, the former Irma Schmidt; two sons, Frank of Halstead and Vernon of Newton; five daughters, Wanda Jantz and Margaret Boehs, both of Fairview, Okla., Ruby Koehn of Fort Lupton, Colo., Ruth Koehn of Halstead, Sheryl Tinkler of Aurora, Colo.; one brother, Leo Buller of Moundridge; and three sisters, Ruby Dirks of Scott City, Mabel Johnson and Edna Koehn, both of Halstead; 15 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

Transcribed by Ralph Shetler, Oregon

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