Betty (Mason) Wolfe

Betty (Mason) Wolfe

 

Betty Mason grew up in Fort Wayne, Indiana.  She attended Biola University, an evangelical Christian university outside Los Angeles, California and then studied nursing at Lutheran Hospital of Indiana.

Beginning 1951, Mason served as a nurse with The Evangelical Alliance Mission (TEAM) at the Msengedzi Mission in Southern Rhodesia.  While there, she met South African John Wolfe. They were married December 11, 1954. They would go on to serve together in Southern Rhodesia/Rhodesia for the next 25 years.

References

  • Ordinary People in God’s Hands – Diane Powell Hawkins
Contributors
  • Mark Loomis

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Stationery: American Board Mission – 15277

American Board Mission

15277

Details

  • Date of Issue: 25th February, 1943
  • Reqn.: 15277
  • Printer: U.A.
  • Quantity: 200

Myrtle Louise Aeschliman

Myrtle Louise Aeschliman

(1893 – 1988)

 

Myrtle (Mary) Louise Patterson was the daughter of George W. and Electa Ellen (Shaner) Patterson, born in Illinois in January 1893. Prior to 1921, Mrs. Patterson moved to Peking (Beijing) China where she taught school for American children. There she met and married Rev. Edward J. Aeschliman.

The Aeschliman’s remained in China until 1950 when they returned to the US due to the advance of communist forces.  After two years furlough in the US, they transferred to the Methodist Episcopal Church’s mission at Old Umtali (Old Mutare), Southern Rhodesia.  As of 1958, they were at Umtali (Mutare), where Mrs. Aeschliman was supervisor of the Methodist “junior church.”

She died October 1988 (age 95) and is buried in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

References

Contributors
  • Mark Loomis

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Edward John Aeschliman

Edward John Aeschliman

(1893–1960)

 

Edward J. Aeschliman was born January 1893 in Rib Lake, Wisconsin to John and Martha (Luethy) Aeschliman. He was educated at Lawrence College, Appleton, Wisconsin, Rochester Theological Seminary and Garrett Biblical Institute, and ordained in 1915.  He spent two years as the assistant pastor of the Ashbury Methodist Church in Rochester, NY.  In 1919, Rev. Aeschliman went to China as a missionary stationed at Peking and later Tienstsin.  While in China, he met and married Myrle L. Patterson in 1921.

The Aeschliman’s left China in 1950 with the advance of communist forces.  After two years furlough in the US, he transferred to the Methodist Episcopal Church’s mission at Old Umtali (Old Mutare), Southern Rhodesia, serving as Director of the Theological Seminary.

Rev. Aeschliman died January 1960 in Southern Rhodesia at the age of 66.

References

Contributors
  • Mark Loomis

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Arthur Merlin Climenhaga

Arthur Merlin Climenhaga

(1916–2005)

Arthur Merlin Climenhaga was born to Rev. John and Emma (Smith) Climenhaga in February 1916. His grandfather was founder of Messiah College, Pennsylvania. He received his Bachelor of Sacred Literature Beulah (later Upland) College 1936, his M.A. from Taylor University in 1938. In the same year he married Arlene Brubaker.

In 1944 he earned his Doctorate of Sacred Theology from Los Angeles Baptist Theological Seminary and in the following year he and his wife served as missionaries in the Rhodesias until 1960, where Rev. Climenhaga was Secretary of the Southern Rhodesia Missionary Conference, 1948-50, General Superintendent of Field Mission, and later Bishop of the Brethren in Christ in Northern and Southern Rhodesia.

Upon their return to the United States, Bishop Climenhaga held a number of posts, including President of Messiah College, Executive Director of the National Association of Evangelicals and Dean of the Western Evangelical Seminary, Portland, Oregon.

His first wife died 1968.  He married his second wife, Lona Sue Brubaker, in 1969. Bishop Climenhaga died April, 2005.

References

Contributors
  • Mark Loomis

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Brethren in Christ Church: Pumula Mission

Brethren in Christ Church

Pumula Mission

Pumula (Phumula) Mission, begun 1955 approximately 65 miles west of Tsholotsho, Matabeleland North Province, was the last of the missions established by Brethren in Christ Church (BICC) in Southern Rhodesia.  The mission came about due to the forced movement of Chief Siphoso Dlodlo and his peoples to the Gwaai S.N.A. (Special Native Area)(Tribal Trust Land) under the Land Apportionment Act.  BICC followed and were granted a site to set up the Pumula Mission.

The Pumula (Phumula) Mission Hospital was opened in 1959.  As of 1970, the hospital served about 3,350 inpatients and offered 6,750 outpatient treatments per year.  It was equipped with 36 beds, maternity ward, rudimentary laboratory and an outpatient clinic.  An x-ray center was added in 2013 to allow the hospital to better screen patients for tuberculosis.   Zimwatuga Primary School is located on/or near the mission.

BICC missionaries to Pumula include Frederic L. Holland (helped to found the mission), Dr. R. Virginia Kauffman (left in 1973), Donna L. Sollenberger, and Rev. and Mrs. Kenneth A. Bulgrien.

References

Contributors
  • Mark Loomis

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American Board Mission: Mount Selinda Mission – Medical Department

Mount Selinda Mission

Medical Department

Medical work began at Mount Selinda in the mission’s first year with the opening of a dispensary by Dr. W. L Thompson in 1893.  It was the first permanent missionary medical mission staffed by a medical doctor in Southern Rhodesia.  The dispensary became a full-fledged hospital in 1912.  Dr. Willis H. Willis, who succeeded Dr. Thompson, began a three-year training course for African nurses in 1930 with seven initial nursing students.

In the mid-1930’s, the hospital received a generous gift from Dr. Willis F. Pierce which made possible a much needed addition to hospital.  It was renamed the “William F. Pierce Memorial Hospital” in his honor.  Between 1930 and 1936, in-patients treated as the hospital grew from 96 to 858, including 57 surgical operations.  There were another 1,689 out patients in that year.

In addition to Doctors Thompson and Willis, other missionary medical staff includes Dr. William T. Lawrence (served at both Mount Selinda and Chikore); Minnie A. Tontz (later Mrs. Lawrence, nurse); Gertrude H. Merrill (nurse); Theresa R. Buck, R.N., (at both Mount Selinda and Chikore); Dr. Victor Master (1948-51); Dr. Kirk Stetson (1956-73); Dr. Donaldson (1958-61); Dr. Alma Cooke (1958-61); Dr. Almarose Cooke (later Mrs. Gordon Wordon); and Dr. Selwyn Spray (deported in 1976 for aiding “African Freedom Fighters”).  The first African doctor joined the hospital in 1982.

Today, Mount Selinda’s medical facilities consist of the Mount Selinda Hospital and School of Nursing.

References

Contributor
  • Mark Loomis

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American Board Mission: Mount Selinda Mission – Mount Selinda Institute

Mount Selinda Mission

Mount Selinda Institute

 

Beginning in 1931, the Mount Selinda Training and Practicing School, consisting of the industrial and agricultural departments, teacher training and “practicing school” (primary school and kindergarten) became known as “Mount Selinda Institute.”  The name has also, at times, been used to describe the mission as a whole.

Samuel J. Curtis was principal until 1939.  He was succeeded by Frank T. Meacham.  William H. Reedy was Principal as of 1958.  Other missionaries joining the staff include Evelyn Lyman, Lois A Bergdolt, Mr. and Mrs. Eric Dahle (teacher training) and F. Keith Schwyhart.

By 1958, the Institute had 500 students in the primary school, teachers’ training, and 3-year courses in building construction and carpentry.  Secondary education was introduced in the mid to late -1960’s.

Today, under the direction of United Church of Christ in Zimbabwe (UCCZ), Mt. Selinda is the site of the Mount Selinda High School (secondary school with boarding facilities for boys and girls) and Mount Selinda primary school.

References

Contributors
  • Mark Loomis

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American Board Mission: Mount Selinda Mission – Mount Silinda Training and Practicing School

Mount Selinda Mission

Mount Silinda Training and Practicing School

 

Arlene R. Mather founded the Mount Silinda Training and Practicing School (also known simply as the “Training School”) in 1918 by consolidating the Industrial Department, Agricultural Department, Bible School, and “normal school” (teacher training). There was also a “practicing school” consisting of a primary school and kindergarten used by the student teachers to “practice” their teaching.

Educating local teachers was essential to the growth and development of “out-station” schools in neighbouring villages (kraals), which were staffed by teachers educated at Mount Silinda. Initially the school was housed in two buildings – a two-story brick building used for the school and boys dormitory and a second building for the girls boarding department.

A number of missionaries served at the school during the time it was called by that name.  In addition to Mather, other school principals included Emory D. Alvord (also in charge of the agricultural department), Ivy E. Craig (acting Principal as of 1928) and Samuel J. Curtis (as of 1929).  Other staff members included Arthur J. Orner (Industrial Department); Richard B. Hack (Industrial Department); Mabel E. Larkins (teacher), and Louise F. Torrence (teacher –as of 1930).

In 1930, enrollment in the training school (vocational and agricultural departments) was 85; there were 57 student teachers in teacher training; and 382 students in the practising school (primary school and kindergarten). Beginning in 1931, the schools, including departments, became known as Mount Selinda Institute.

References

  • Annual Reports of the American Board of Commissioners (1918- 1931).
Contributors
  • Mark Loomis

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American Board Mission: Mount Selinda Mission – Industrial Department

Mount Selinda Mission

Industrial Department

Soon after Mount Silinda Mission (later Mount Selinda) was established, in keeping with the thinking of the time, it was decided to put an emphasis on “industrial” (vocational) training. At various times over the years, the Industrial department operated a sawmill, and taught courses in carpentry (making and selling furniture), construction/building, brick making, leatherwork, metalwork and agriculture. The department served three purposes: educational; helping to construct mission buildings and supply necessary equipment for the work of other departments; and generating revenue in support of the mission.

Columbus C. (C.C.) Fuller began the Industrial Department upon his arrival in 1902. To lay the department’s foundation, he arranged to have a “traction engine” (self-propelled steam engine) and corresponding machinery hauled by ox teams from Beira, Portuguese East Africa (Mozambique) – a trek of over 200 miles! “Breakage of some portions of the machinery and the detention of other portions on the way caused delay, but after months of hard work” the steam engine was used to help construct a sawmill which opened just a year after Fuller arrived at the mission.

By 1908, despite ill health that “prevented Mr. Fuller from securing the development of the industrial department, as had been his hope,” the department had helped build the girls dormitory, a hospital, put a printing press into operation and make over 200,000 bricks. Beginning in 1909, the Industrial department was headed by Arthur J. Orner. Sidney F. Dart joined in 1911.

The Industrial Department was incorporated into the Mount Silinda Training and Practicing School beginning 1918.

References

  • The Industrial Plant in Gazaland, The Missionary Herald (March 1904)
  • Annual Reports of the American Board of Commissioners (1902-1918
Contributors
  • Mark Loomis

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