Genevieve Shuppert Bertsche, 95, passed away Tuesday, May 30 at Goshen Hospital after a brief illness.
She and her husband had moved to the Greencroft retirement campus in 2000, and Jenny moved into assisted living there in May of 2016.
She was born at home in Green Township, St .Joseph County, on Oct. 21, 1921 to LeRoy and Maggie (McDonald) Shuppert. She was the youngest of eight children.
Jenny graduated from Green Township High School in 1939, and Taylor University, Upland in 1945, with a major in sociology and a minor in history.
She married James Edwin Bertsche June 9, 1946. He preceded her in death Feb. 27, 2013.
Mrs. Bertsche and her husband both felt God's call to overseas missions and, thus, she spent 25 years as a missionary in Congo, Africa. Her career there included educating and resourcing young Congolese women, teaching, providing radio communication to other mission stations and serving her Lord through hours of hospitality. She and her husband later relocated to Elkhart, where she continued her service to Africa Inter Mennonite Mission. Jenny coordinated the AIMM Women's Auxiliary, provided office administrative support, edited a monthly newspaper for AIMM personnel and hosted countless travelers and friends.
She was a member of Salem Mennonite Church, Gridley, Illinois and an associate member of Silverwood Mennonite Church, Goshen.
Her greatest life tests of faith happened during civil rebellions in Congo in 1960 and 1964. She endured an emergency evacuation from Congo in 1960, and the total destruction of their home and offices, and threats to their lives in 1964. The strength of Jenny's faith was also tested during many days of single parenting during her husband's times of travel.
She is survived by three children, Sandra (Rodney) Bertsche King, Goshen, Linda (James Yoder) Bertsche, Parkersburg, West Virginia and Timothy (Laura) Bertsche, Morton Illinois; seven grandchildren and one great-grandchild.
She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband; two sisters, Vera Benson and Helen Hartke; and five brothers, Vernon, Harold (stillborn), Bonn, William and Robert Shuppert.
A 3 p.m., Sunday, July 16, memorial service will be conducted in The Gathering Room at Evergreen Place on the Goshen Greencroft campus. Memorial contributions may be given to Africa Inter Mennonite Mission or to Elkhart County Hospice.
According to her wishes, cremation has taken place. There will be a private graveside service at a later date.
Online condolences may be shared at www.yoderculpfuneralhome.com.
Published on June 4, 2017