Wilhelmina "Willy" Tensen
Wilhelmina Johanna Hendricka Tensen was born in Zwollekerspel, Holland, on June 8, 1932, to Willem and Pietertje Tensen. The thirteenth child of thirteen children, Willy learned early the value of hard work both at home and in the grocery store her parents owned. Despite the painful realities her family experienced during the Second World War, Willy completed her high school, received her teaching credentials in 1953, and taught for many years prior to the 1961 move to Canada. The greatest change in her life came in about 1967 when her eyes were opened to her need for a Saviour. She said John 1:12 was her key to new life in Christ. "But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God." In her words, before she was saved she knew about God, but now she knew God. Using the book Expendable, God directed Willy's next step to attend PBI, graduating in 1971. A need for a Grade 3 teacher at Prairie found her returning to teaching. Life was very full but friends, gardening, and traveling to see family in Alberta as well as friends in Holland added sweet memories and refreshed her each holiday.
Retirement brought many new opportunities including a ministry in serving elderly ladies with needs. Visiting her siblings and their families and family reunions were regular highlights. A faithful prayer warrior for many, she especially enjoyed praying for many of her former students on the mission field. A brain aneurism about ten years ago was in many ways life changing for her. It was during her recuperation in Red Deer that the Lord gave her the song, “In the Shelter of Your Wings.” She has shared it with many that crossed her path. The staff at St. Mary's Lodge in Trochu and Three Hills Continuing Care provided a warm home to her for her last years. The Lord gave her ample opportunities to share her love for Jesus. Willy passed away peacefully just before noon at the Three Hills Continuing Care on Monday, January 29, 2018. She was predeceased by many of her siblings. Left to mourn her passing are her family and many friends. At her request, in lieu of flowers, memorial gifts can be given in her name to Prairie Tabernacle Congregation or the Gideons. Heartland Funeral Services Ltd., Olds entrusted with arrangements. 403-507-8610 www.heartlandfuneralservices.com