For those who do not remember, Mary Okeyo was a deaconness in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Kenya. She was a tireless worker for Christ and and a marvelous witness to the Gospel. She was an “in your face” example for youg people, especially orphans. I remembr her going after one of the young ones in my presence and after she was done with him I asked what that rather animated conversation was all about? She said that this particular young man was an orphan and he had not done well in a particular test. She know he could do better and she told him.
Mary died suddenly and we decided to name the travel scholarship fund in her name. It got me to thinking about legacies. What will we leave behind after we are gone that will mean something? Mary leaves behind many orphans who she cared for and who honor her as well as her fellow deaconness’ who try to live up to her demanding belief that we needed to always do our best for Jesus. So far 11 young people who have traveld on the scholarship named for her have had their lives changed and are out there telling the story of our partnership with the Kenyans. Candice Biocondoa was out Sunday and many others have been telling the story. Kyle Novak was in Carrington ND not long ago. Dean Lipinski and Mike Henke recently did some presentations. Others have done presentations as well since the summer and I would like to hear from them.
Another enduring legacy is her family. They are active in the church I believe and Bob Wurl and Pastor Moline were able to visit them. I am sure Mary is proud of them. I know that she wanted her children to be active in the church and she wanted the same fro the orphans that she cared for. She wanted children to ahve an education so they could serve Christ.
Martin Luther wrote this about people who didn’t want their children to go to school, but to learn a trade.
(God) has not given you your children and the means to support them simply so that you may do with them as you please, or train them just to get ahead in the world. You have been earnestly commanded to raise them for God’s service, or be completely rooted out – you, your children, and everything else, in which case everything you have done for them is condemned, as the first commandment says, “I visit the iniquities of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me” [Exod. 20:5].