On September 21, 1973 she was commissioned at a service in the Hamilton Free Reformed church and sent out to South Africa where she served for 18 years, working mainly with women at and around the hospital in Siloam in Venda. In April of 1991 she returned from that mission field due to political unrest in the region, which made it impossible to continue mission work there. Shortly after her return she was asked to go to our new mission field in Cubulco, Guatemala, and upon her acceptance she was commissioned during a service on December 6, 1991 at the Chatham Free Reformed church, her new sending church. After labouring in Cubulco for almost 7 years Mary returned to Canada. Following a period of rest and readjustment she became an employee of Word and Deed Ministries.
Thus for a quarter of a century Mary has faithfully served on two mission fields, learning two very difficult languages, Venda and Achi, and teaching woman and children the Word of God. The Mission Committee looks back with great appreciation, and indeed nostalgia, to a long and fruitful relationship with this diligent and committed mission worker.
Dear Mary, on behalf of our entire denomination we wish to express our profound gratitude for all you have done for the Lord's cause. You have touched many lives with the Gospel and have already had the joy of seeing some of the fruits of your labours. Only eternity, however, will reveal the full extent of the harvest of souls that have come to know the Lord through your ministry. We rejoice with you that also in your new position as secretary at Word and Deed you are still involved in mission-related work.
It is our prayer that God will bless you in your present area of service and give you the necessary health and strength to continue in this work for years to come. May you by grace remain "steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as you know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord (I Cor. 15:58).
Rev. C. Pronk, Chairman Mission Committee