Memories of Joan: 1962 to 2022

‘It seems I am the earliest to have memories of Joan.  I arrived in the same country in 1964 and was sent straight to language school.  Three of us were kindly accommodated in the pleasant Bible School which was run by American missionary ladies who reminded me of characters in Anne of Green Gables.  Joan was on the staff and was concerned that we should show our appreciation of being accommodated there by being culturally sensitive – not to India but to America (e.g. how we should use our cutlery etc.)!  I expect we gave her many headaches, but nevertheless I have been good friends with her for these past 58 years!’ ~ Jeanette Short MBE, former Interserve/BMMF Partner

‘I worked alongside Joan for some years at a Bible Training Centre, although I was not with Interserve. I remember Joan being very involved with and concerned for the local church. She met every week with two elderly ladies from the local church to pray for revival. After a few years the numbers in the church had grown and the quality of their discipleship had improved – largely because of the persistent prayer of these three faithful prayer warriors.’ ~ Freda, former overseas worker

‘I remember visiting Joan in my early days at Interserve, maybe in the early 2000’s. She lived nearby and she was influential for me in the way that she exemplified the prayer culture that Interserve supporters embraced. She was an early example to me of the attention to detail that supporters took in wanting to pray for Partners, with her notes scribbled all over her prayer booklet. What an example; congratulations on her 100th year! ~ Alastair McIver, former Interserve staff member

Joan (left) with Maggie Hobbs and Annie Backhouse

‘I first met Joan when we travelled to my first country conference, a week after I arrived as a new Partner in a new country in 1986. She gave me insights that added to my orientation. During my time there we continued to keep in touch and met up again at conferences. She had lots to share, telling stories with gusto and I thoroughly enjoyed my conversations with her.

I was amazed at her vigour and strength when she told me she was looking after someone in her 90’s. In her 80’s herself, Joan caring full-time for a 90 year-old. She is so big-hearted and always giving, in every sense of the word; what an inspiration!  I am privileged to have visited her twice on thee Isle of Man. The first trip saw her organising meetings so I could share about work in a neighbouring country. For one home group she photocopied photographs and enlarged them, pasting them around the room as everything was low tech. She had already moved to a home during my second visit but was still full of energy and stories. Joan has been journeying with me since my first year with Interserve, through letters and phone calls. More recently I got updates from her relatives. It is amazing how the Father connected me with her relatives who are my good friends.

I am so blessed to have dear Joan who assures me she is always praying.
Thank you, Father, for gifting Joan to us.’ ~ C, Interserve Partner

‘The years have slipped by and we didn’t realise Joan was going to be 100 this summer! She is an amazing lady. Joan sent our son many, many books on every imaginable subject, all of which he devoured as he loved reading. We have many fond memories of her and have been in contact over the years including a visit to the Isle of Man and meeting one of her cousins in Gloucestershire. When we visited, Joan showed us the charity shop where she worked and from where she found most of the books. Our son is very fond of her and when he is in the UK (he currently lives in mainland Europe), he still likes to speak to Joan on the phone.’ ~ J and A, Interserve Partners