Gerald and Ina Leonard

    Gerald and Ina photo

    The authors Gladys, Wesley and Hedley met Gerald and Ina Leonard at the Bible Institute.    In 1965 we were all on the same ‘Assignment’ visiting the people in the African township in Simonstown each week.  Although Gerald had officially graduated in 1964 he had to wait while Ina completed her year at BI, as the Mission required. Nevertheless Gerald joined us walking up the very steep slopes at Leyolla each Sunday afternoon. We were the last team to have this assignment as the people of Leyolla were then moved to Gugulethu on the Cape Flats and the township was closed.

    They joined Africa Evangelical Fellowship after Ina graduated from BI at the end of 1965 and went to Pietermaritzburg to study Zulu.  They were then sent to Nkanga in the Transkei where they worked for a number of years.  At Nkanga they experienced the atrocities of tribal warfare right on their doorstep.  On a number of occasions they had to help the wounded and pick up the dead all around their mission station.  To ensure that they were not seen to be participial to any particular faction they had to help all the wounded to the hospital, and often carried warriors from opposing factions in the same vehicle, much to the annoyance from both sides.  But their ministry continued and they were never threatened or attacked.

    They then spent some years in Swaziland at Mbuluzi at an AEF missionary school.
    They worked at the school and in the surrounding areas.

    Their two children, Steve and Roslyn went to school in Pietermaritzburg, staying at a home run by the AEF especially for missionary children whose parents were not living near any suitable school.  Steve and Roslyn only went home over holidays.   It was not easy for the children. Neither was not easy for Gerald and Ina to have their children away from home while they were still so young.

    They later moved to the Christian Ministry to Miners in the Rustenburg area, still under AEF, where they ministered until they retired.  Ray Oosthuis, another ex-BI student, had started this ministry years before.  Hedley, who had also worked in the CMM earlier, was also living in Rustenburg at that time.  It was his privilege to have had close fellowship with Gerald and Ina in those years.

    After retiring they lived in Dorncliffe Retirement Village near the Pavilion in Westville, outside Durban. This was close to where their daughter Roslyn and her husband and son lived.  Ros kept a close eye on them and helped them a great deal. They also went up to Pietermaritzburg to visit with their son Steve and his wife and two daughters.
    They were so proud of their three grand children.

    Gladys kept in touch with them from the time they graduated from B I until they died.
    She was able to visit them in their retirement and attended both of their funerals.

    They were always cheerful, uncomplaining and cared for others right to the end.
    They were faithful members of the Presbyterian Church.
    First Gerald, then Ina lost the battle against cancer.
    Gerald past away in 2004 and Ina in 2012.
    They both loved the Lord and served Him to the end.
    We thank the Lord for their love and friendship over many years.