Sunday, June 8, 2014

In Loving Memory 

of Phyllis Schoonover

Home With the Lord 
May 28, 2014

Kathy Remembers Auntie Phyllis

Auntie Phyllis, sometimes folks ask why we have so many Uncles and Aunties, and the reason is, that “us missionary kids” usually lived on the Mission Field, far away from family, and the Missionaries became our family. Auntie Phyllis was one of my loving “Aunties.”

She is so dear to all of us and made such an influence in all our lives! 

I remember meeting her for the first time. She and her husband, Uncle Wayne and children, Mark, Wayne, and Jill had several of us missionary families over for lunch, I was seven, and I remember the beautiful glasses on the table. I thought they were too special to touch!   

Then, my Daddy, Fred Bahler, and his usual mischievousness, took one of the glasses, and started rubbing the top, and such beautiful sounds started coming from that glass. Pretty soon, everyone was rubbing the glasses, and having such a great time. Sure broke the ice. Thus, started a long journey of friendship and ministry through the years!

Through the years, we had many laughs, cries, discouragements, blessings and grand experiences that only one has in missionary life. Wouldn’t trade it for anything. Our lives are rich beyond imagination.

Many, many memories of Auntie Phyllis: She always encouraged us and gave advice when needed! I learned how to not take too much on my plate, remembering that there were others in the line behind me! She gave me lessons in fractions, when my Mom got frustrated with me! That was at Kumbya, at Independence time and our Mom’s were trying to keep the schooling going, even if we were refugees in an evacuation--vacation land of swimming, hiking and boating. 

When we all came back from the Congo in 1960, because of the troubles, we had the privilege of having Uncle Wayne as our pastor in Derbe, Colorado. Wonderful times of growing in the Word and making lots of American friends.

Then, Grace Bible College came, and Richard and I were married by Uncle Wayne and a whole new life started with Richard and me going to the mission field, because of Uncle Wayne and Auntie Phyllis’s testimony and their personal challenge to become missionaries to the Congo, formerly Zaire.

Richard Remembers

I met Wayne before I met Phyllis in 1970, when he spoke at GBC of how it was when he was a college student and some of the pranks they played; then he challenged me that teaching in Kenya in English would be great, but had I considered being a teacher of Grace pastors in the Congo where he and Phyllis were missionaries. Later his son Wayne, Jr., played a prank on me and Kathy–attacking us as we returned from a symphony concert / orchestra, and washing Kathy’s face in the snow. When I told him to get his own date with her instead of ruining my only date with Kathy, young Wayne let it be known that I had a crush on Kathy.   
Later, Uncle Wayne was the Pastor who married Kathy and me, and helped us join them in the Congo in 1975. 

In 1985 as head of GMI, Wayne encouraged us to establish BESI and later he and Phyllis encouraged us with Radio Kahuzi and helped us find Board members for BESI at the GGF Convention in 1988. Later, Phyllis encouraged Uncle Wayne to also become an active BESI Board member.

All through the years Auntie Phyllis and Uncle Wayne have Fortified our Work in the Lord by Praying, Giving, Counseling, Giving, and Intervening, to Help us Keep On Keeping ON!! 

Praise the Lord for their Lives and Ministry to us and through us.

Harold and Barbara Smith met Phyllis and Wayne 
at a GGF Convention in the 90s