Called Home Sunday morning March 11, 2012, Modesta Harwood (nee Leaños), a lady of prayer and gentle witness for Jesus Christ. Predeceased by Leslie Harwood, her partner and strength for 46 years.
Born 93 years ago to cattle ranching parents in southeastern Bolivia, Modesta loved a good steak and claimed that chicken should only be fed to the infirm.
She fondly recalled childhood fiestas; a cow on the barbeque, the happy sounds of dancing feet while her dad played guitar. Her mother a seamstress and grandmother a tailor, were in high demand for their skills and at their side she acquired the needlework expertise she enjoyed throughout her life.
On a sunny day in June she married a British missionary, Leslie Harwood, her prince. That day they pledged Ruth 1:16,17 “…your people shall be my people, and your God, my God and where you die, there will I be buried.”
Together they raised four children: Dave, Jan (Don Clements), Jackie (Kenn Sundberg, Danielle) and Joy (Eric Galmut, Micah, Jenessa, Jared, TJ) during their long missionary career with the Guaraní of Isoso .
In the early years, conditions were isolating and primitive so travel entailed hours and hours on horseback. Although they also faced danger from war and revolutions, Mom never let us forget her horsemanship as a measure of competency. Should we ever suggest that something might just be too difficult for her, she would retort: I used to ride a horse, you know!
Mom, your example taught us to face life with courage, hard work and good humour. We know your secret was rooted in a quiet moment, again and again with God. It was at your knee we learnt to love God and follow Him. Thank you for sharing your love for Bolivia and the ministry to which you and Dad were called. Everything we are today is touched by your love and his.
A heartfelt thanks to the team of caregivers at NetCare, and Dr. Ling Low, for support and compassion during Mom’s long goodbye. Although she struggled to remember your names, she always knew you loved her and she loved you back.
Memorial Service was held Saturday, March 17, 2012, at Sardis Baptist Fellowship
If you so wish, a memorial gift designated for Guaraní Literature in Bolivia, would be an honouring tribute. (c/o Avant Ministries, 2121 Henderson Hwy, Wpg. R2G 1P8)
— Death did not win.