Anna Kerr has been a dynamo in local and global missions at our church for most of her adult life. For the past 25+ years, she has been the director of Missions, or more recently — Global Missions. She always graciously donated her time and energy to the church, never taking a cent in pay! Only eternity will tell the story of her impact on the work of Christ’s Kingdom.
When she was a young lady she had a passion to become a foreign missionary. However, God told her “No, you are to stay home in the U.S.” Rather than have a negative response to this Word from the Lord, she spent the rest of her life supporting missions from here. This act of obedience on her part is why she has been such an active part of our church’s work in the field of foreign missions.
She loved corresponding with the missionaries we support and praying for them daily. She was always praying for them, both in her own home, and whenever she could pray with someone. She was passionate about getting the Gospel of Jesus Christ out to the nations. Prayer was a central passion of her life. Every Global Missions meeting finished with an intense round of prayer for many of the ministries our church supports.
I think she would say that a highlight of her time directing global missions at our church was leading the two mission trips our church took to Embangweni Missions Hospital in Malawi, Africa. Our church wired the hospital, built at the turn of the 20th century, so it could receive electrical power. Her face would always light up when the conversation turned to that special rural, mission hospital. When I was able to meet the new native Malawian chief administrator and visit the hospital in 2019, she was so excited. Once again her beloved FPCH stepped up to help Embangweni Hospital in a unique and powerful way.
I remember, after a Perspectives in World Missions course we hosted at our church, our missions committee decided that we should adopt an unreached people group somewhere in the world. We spent a couple of years praying and waiting on the Lord for His direction. One evening, we were in Middle Terrace listening to the Callison’s explain their work with the Kurdish people. At some point in their presentation, Anna caught my eye across the room, and we both nodded to each other. We had both felt the nudge of God’s Spirit to make this special group our church’s adopted people. We are still committed to bringing the gospel of Jesus to this group today.
Anna, and her husband Jack, also supported God’s work financially. Even though they both had good paying jobs and no children to care for, they lived in a simple tract home in Downey and always drove an ancient car. They lived simply so they could support the work of Christian missionaries and our church.
Although I’m certain they would have loved to have children, the Lord never gave them a child. Again, Anna’s response was to roll up her sleeves and mentor countless young ladies who attended our church. She would make her time available to them, both as a prayer partner and as a spiritual mentor. Selfless service to the work of her Savior was her life’s passion.
As we said goodbye to Anna last week, I began to realize how vital this 92-year old woman was for our work here at our church. Her shoes will be very hard to fill and I’m hopeful that many of us will step up and help shoulder her responsibilities. I was blessed to work alongside this godly woman and I will miss her.
Global Missions Team