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Marjory Foyle – One of the early pioneers

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  • Marjory Foyle |
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    In 1990, I went overseas as a short-term missionary and met some people who had to leave the mission field due to stress-related issues. I asked what help was available for people like this. In response, I was pointed to the book Honourably Wounded by Marjory Foyle. This had been published in 1987, and many people told me how much it had helped them.

    I had the privilege of getting to know Marjory, and becoming involved with InterHealth, a travel clinic in London which she had helped to establish to support mission workers. Marjory has played a substantial part in increasing understanding of stress and resilience among mission workers.

    Marjory & Debbie 2014

    When travelling, I often meet people who tell me how much Marjory has helped them, both personally and through her writings. She is loved by all for her gentle and humble manner and her humour.

    Marjory is one of the early pioneers of ‘member care’, the care of mission workers. After retiring from 30 years working as a medical missionary in India and Nepal, she was invited to visit many countries to promote mental health, through lectures and consultations. She is recognised as a worldwide expert on the nature of stress and how it affects people working in cross-cultural situations. She has been ahead of her time in writing and speaking about the needs of missionary children, as well as their parents; and the need to adapt care for different cultures.

    I have had the joy of travelling internationally with Marjory, learning from her and sharing a hut in South Africa, and a hotel room in the USA and Europe. We have always laughed together, and shared our Christian lives together.

    The last time I heard Marjory give a talk, she spoke to a member care group about aging and spirituality. Afterwards, one of those listening said, ‘it was like sitting at the feet of an angel.’

    I am full of gratitude to Marjory for inspiring, encouraging and supporting me and many hundreds of other people for many years. Happy birthday Marjory!

    Dr Debbie Hawker, clinical psychologist and co-chair of Global Connections Member Care and TCK Care Forum

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