Thursday, September 30, 2010

Barbara Christine Hall Rutledge - December 2, 1930 to August 27, 2010

Grandma Barbara, as many in Matagalpa and Jinotega called her, celebrated the last 8 years of her life in Nicaragua as a missionary serving in the gift of helps. Primarily she helped home school and care for the younger children of her oldest son's family. She also interceded for those the ministry was touching. Barbara lived in Nicaragua from 2002 until she passed away August 27, 2010.

As a child, teenager, and young lady she grew up in Seymour, Tennessee. She was known as Christine, her middle name, and affectionately called Kricket by her father, William Hall Sr. She married Joseph W. Rutledge in 1956 and gave birth to four children: Earl, Ellen, Lloyd and Fred.

imageBarbara and her husband Joe touched many lives in a variety of ways. In the first year of their marriage they were “tentmakers” in Elgin, Illinois, where Joe taught math in the public high school as they ministered in a Baptist mission in the city.  Afterwards, they served as dorm parents at Harrison-Chilhowee Academy in Seymour, Tennessee. Leaving Tennessee, they returned to Louisiana where Joe finished a third degree in engineering. Barbara and Joe both had previously finished masters degrees in Christian Education from Southwestern Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas.

The following years were filled with raising a family as Joe worked as an engineer and later Barbara returned to the university to be certified as a teacher for special needs children. During these 16 years both attended church and served faithfully in whatever manner they could. In 1975 Barbara and Joe realized a dream they had put aside many years before and the summer after Earl graduated from high school they took their first missionary journey to the island of Jamaica. The time spent there was short, but it opened their hearts once again to serve as carriers of God’s light to the nations and people that would never think of entering a church door. Joe’s job as an engineer allowed their light to shine as they lived with their family in Mandeville, Jamaica and later Valencia, Venezuela.       
When Barbara’s husband Joe passed away in 2002 she decided to move to Nicaragua and live with her oldest son. She served in their ministry as she taught and cared for their younger children. Although unable to speak and understand Spanish, this did not prevent her from showing the people that she loved God and that she loved them. In this silent yet powerful way she continued until her death impacting lives of those that came in contact with her.

August 27, 2010, at 10:25 PM, after a three month bout with illness, Barbara Christine Hall Rutledge walked through the valley of the shadow of death into the eternal glory with her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. She passed away in her sleep at the Hospital Metropolitano-Vivian Pelas, in Managua, Nicaragua.

Barbara Christine is survived by three children: Earl, Ellen and Lloyd; nine grandchildren: Marcus, Cheree, Sarah, John, Judah, Lance, Luke, Kelsy, Esperanza; and one great grand-child Katelynn.
Her testimony lives on.

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