Meet Marilyn and Shirley

Hearing the call…on a farm

Marilyn heard God’s call at age 12, studied linguistics and then lived for 24 years in a jungle village translating God’s Word for people who had never had a written language, let alone a verse of the Bible.

The second half of her life, she was a sought-after speaker for conferences, retreats, colleges, banquets and other events. With a twinkle in her eye and a mischievous smile, she recounted times when she heard God’s call, argued with him about who’s in charge, ate grubs and witnessed miracles.

All of Marilyn’s stories can be read and watched in her books and videos, available in our store.

As good as her stories about her past were, the best part was how the Lord used her in the lives she interacted with while on the road speaking. Whether it was on stage in front of a thousand teenagers, on a college campus, or sitting, talking through questions about God’s will, one-on-one with a girl, Marilyn has inspired more people to follow God’s call into the mission field than just about anyone. Hundreds, if not thousands, of current missionaries point to Marilyn’s stories that were used by God to call them into the mission field.

What made Marilyn so special is that she didn’t think she was special. She believed she was just an ordinary person serving an extraordinary God – and He gave her opportunities throughout life to trust Him and find Him faithful.

Shirley, Marilyn’s sister, joined her in Hauna while the translation was still in progress, and is currently still serving in Papua New Guinea in Hauna Village. She works everyday teaching kids to read and write, and working with the villagers, who work in the Sepik Christian Ministries main house. Under Shirley’s leadership and credentials, teachers are being trained in Hauna, in order to be sent out to surrounding villages to open a primary school where there is none.