b. 10 May 1893 Harlan, Shelby Co., IA
m. 24 June 1920 Moville, IA
d. 12 Aug 1984 in South Africa
Buried- Gardens of Memories, Marion, IN

Was Missionary in So. Africa
poetry, memorizing scripture

Started Uni of Nebr in Agriculture
After call to ministry went to Central Holiness University near Oskaloosa, IA.(now called Vernard College).
Lived in South Africa for 50 years.


b. 9 Jan 1896 Moville, IA
d. 4 July 1979 Marion. IN
Buried- Gardens of Memories, Marion, IN

Homemaker, missionary

letter writing, sewing, knitting, crochet

Magnus & Florence

Graduated from University- unusual for her generation of women!

Several of her family mentioned how much they enjoyed the many letters from her and how they miss those letters that no longer arrive to inspire and delight the reader.

Aunt Ethel (Shutts) Swain writes -I believe Florence was the most "truly Christian" person I knew.


from Ralph Christensen

South Africa — March 1987

M. D. Christensen (Magnus Dale) and his wife, Florence Pearl (Crawford) met at Central Holiness University near Oskaloosa, Iowa. Magnus came there from Agricultural College in Lincoln. Lydia Christensen was a moving spirit in getting him and Agnes Christensen to Oskaloosa. Agnes also attended the University and met her husband there, Floyd La Favre. While at Oskaloosa Magnus took a gospel team to the Nebraska sand-hills during the summers where they had tent meetings. In Nebraska he met relatives of Frederick Franson, the founder of The Evangelical Alliance Mission (then the Scandinavian Alliance Mission). Malla Moe, veteran missionary who started team's work in Swaziland was visiting in Nebraska and interested him in Mission work there.

In 1920 Magnus and Florence graduated from University and were married at Florence's home on a farm near Movile, IA., with Ethel Christensen in the wedding party. Before the year was out they were in Swaziland to begin their missionary work. They built the large mission station at Mhlosheni (in the whiteness) in Southern Swaziland called Franson Memorial Bible School (FMBS). One of my memories of the early days at Mhlosheni was a visit from Aunt Lydia, who came from her Mission work in India. While she was there we had an earthquake which rumbled and shook our home until the kerosene lanterns were swaying. I climbed onto Lydia's lap for protection and comfort. The folks served as missionaries for sixty years — 30 years in Africa and 30 years in the States, working for TEAM as representatives. Magnus was a minister of the Evangelical Free Church of America and was awarded an honorary doctorate for outstanding contribution to the service of Christ.

In the early 1930's, Dad went back alone for a few years to help in Swaziland. In 1935 a Christensen reunion was planned at the grandparents' farm near Allen, Nebraska. This coincided with Dad's return from Africa. The younger grandchildren entertained themselves by riding down the hill in front of the house on a bicycle. It was a balloon tire and had a speedometer and each tried to ride down faster than the other. Finally, we got riding down double, reaching almost 50 miles an hour.

from Kenneth Lea Christensen

(written by Ralph, I believe)

In 1935 we had a Christensen reunion on Grandpa Christensen's farm near Allen, Nebraska. Grandpa Andrew and Mary Christensen had sold the farm and moved to Cedar Falls, Iowa, where Aunt Ethel was going to Teacher Training College. However the sale went sour so in their old age they had to take the farm back. Dad (Magnus) had been in Swaziland while we were in Gothenburg. The reunion was when he was getting back to the states and when Aunt Lydia was getting back from Bombay, India where she'd been a missionary. Everyone came to the reunion except 2 or 3 cousins.

In front of the farm house there was a hill. We were told that in the early days when the Model T. Fords were low on fuel they used to back up that hill. There were quite a few cousins there and one had a balloon-tired bike with a speedometer - that was a new gadget for us. We took turns riding down the hill to see who could go the fastest. We finally decided that we could go faster if we rode double, so that is what we began to do. Fortunately, none of us broke our necks but we did reach a speed of 48 miles an hour.

Dad tells a story about his Indian motorcycle. This had 4 cylinders and was powerful, dangerous and tricky to handle. A new missionary came to the field from Norway by the name of Axel Gjestland. Dad would take him on the back of the motorcycle as they would go out to meetings in the out stations. He kept begging for Dad to let him drive it until finally he consented.

Dad got on behind and away they went. It went pretty well so Gjestland began to talk. As he talked they came to a gravelly part of the path which almost spilled the motorcycle. Gjestland got control of the bike but he didn't realize that Dad had been thrown off. He wasn't hurt but he saw Gjestland and the bike disappear over the next hill. Dad sat and waited to see when Gjestland would wake up. Pretty soon Gjestland and the bike came in view over the hill. When Gjestland stopped by Dad he said, "When I realized that you were not on the back I got a real fright. I thought Christ had come and left me behind!"

Magnus-my Uncle by Rowenna Erbach

By the time 1 knew Uncle Magnus he had dedicated himself and his life to the saving of souls, through Jesus Christ our Lord. It was always first and foremost in his thinking and in his contacts. He traveled far and wide to carry out this mission, and never spared his own strength and energy to do it. Aunt Florence was always the faithful helpmate. They touched thousands of lives in our country and in others. I was always thrilled to listen to the experiences in Africa. Aunt Florence often had more time to share the cultural things of the area than he did, and through her conversation and her letters she shared generously, and I found this a most interesting aspect of their varied lives. They were seldom settled long in one place unless there was a real need for them to be there. Uncle Magnus liked to write poetry about the various "points" in life. He returned to his beloved Africa even into his last years and stayed there to be close to the work and his family as long as he was able to do so. When he was no longer able he willingly turned it over to other capable hands.

A poem commenting on the times- by Magnus

March 1978

Prices are soaring and people are roaring
Is there no feeling and is there no ceiling?
How long can prices keep going up and up?
Will it stop by leaving people with an empty cup?

Will some coffers be full and others be empty
Can those who have nothing live with those who have plenty?
Can either seller or buyer win at this pace
Is that the goal of the human race?

There is only one solution for all mankind
They must be Christ-minded the solution to find
With God in control the economy will level
For His Son will be Lord who has conquered the devil.


by M. D. Christensen August 1979

After 59 years of blessed marriage bliss,
What will we say of the one we would soon miss.
We felt our work in Africa was done.
Many victories there together for Christ we had won.

In 1979 we came back to America to stay.
We did not know that parting was not far away.
I was eighty-six years old and she was eighty—three.
That we should go slower we both did agree.

First in our mobile home we got resettled.
We had stayed in Africa until America's snow had melted.
Soon we went all our children in America to see
Going wherever they happened to be.

At all these reunions we had a delightful time.
The atmosphere was harmonious and easy to rhyme.
After that we visited some churches we had served
And were blessed above all that we deserved.

They showered us with love and offerings too.
It was all as shining as the morning dew.
By bus to get home it would take all day.
One dear brother said there must be a better way.

He chartered a Jet plane and put us aboard.
Such luxury how could he this afford?
It took us 40 minutes to make the trip
On this new expensive, magnificent air ship.
We had (not) experienced such luxury before.
Nor did we know such travel together would be no more.

At home my beloved broke her hand and hip
And thus ended such an unexpected trip.
At the hospital all for my wife went well
And we did not know the sad story we would tell.

She entered the hospital June eleven.
We did not know she would soon be in heaven.
On the third of July she was dismissed
Not to be named on the obituary list.

We had her alive at home just one day,
For it seemed all clouds had passed away.
We tucked her in bed and said good night
Hoping to greet her again in the morning light.

I slept in the next room close to her.
I would be able to hear if there was a stir.
But while we slept she took her flight.
We had said our last good night.

She passed on in perfect peace,
There was no sign of harsh release.
We found her sitting and with head bowed.
Not even a whimper was heard aloud.

Virginia, her daughter, and husband stood there.
Our sorrow with each other to share.
Tears began to flow and still do flow,
But this is the way we all must go.

Some deep convictions upon us were pressed
And by these convictions we were possessed.
Her homegoin' was at the right time;
It was 4th of July celebration; could it be more sublime?

Her place of going was at the right place.
What better place to end earth's race?
Her departure was in the right way.
Cleansed by the blood she entered into heaven to eternally stay.

Who can adequately review her life?
It was lived without greed or strife.
She lived for others and not for self
And so was never put on the shelf.

Her children rise up to call her blessed
And so do all others who knew her best.
Her posterity numbers children four
And grandchildren make the number 14 more.
Eight great-grandchildren did already appear
And to them Grandma became very dear.

What would her husband at the funeral say
As her eight grandsons carried her body away?
Follow her as she followed her Lord
And you will gain heaven and an eternal reward.



b. Swaziland
m 18 Dec 1944 Erie, PA

M. D. Physician & Surgeon
Christian Med Society, Kiwanis

B Sc Zoology '43 Wheaton College
Uni of Ill. Med school & Internship
U. S. Public Health Service 1947-1950
Surg. Residency '50-53 Hines VA Hospital; Chest Surg. Residency '53-4
Private Practice in LaGrange, IL—Surgery, Family Practice & Industrial Medicine

Member 1st Presbyterian Church


b. Erie, PA

Housewife, bookkeeper
mother loves to travel

Family- Chief interest



b. Oak Park, IL
m. 12 June 1976 Arlington Heights, IL

golf, tennis, sports, church Elder

Served 2 yrs in Navy Dental Corps
Attends New Life Presbyterian Church, Fruitland Park, FL
Has always been intrigued with the healing part of Jesus' ministry and has just helped start a Sunday evening "Service of Wholeness" at their church.


b. Chicago, IL

Registered Nurse (retired)

children's chauffeur

Spent 1/2 of 1985 and 1/2 of 1986 as construction coordinator for their new Christian Education Administration Building.



b. Leesburg, FL

ballet, church choir

Straight "A" student


b. Leesburg, FL


Loves to talk, very gregarious.


I remember. from Gary M. Christensen

At Uncle Earls:

1) Riding Blondie.

2) taking 2 days getting used to the smell of the hogs.

3) riding through the corn fields with cousins Ken & Chuck and finding barbed wire the hard way.

4) jumping into the silo full of corn with my sister until we were completely covered.

In General:

1) many great times playing golf over the years (or trying to) with my father. Uncle Ralph, Rick, Ken, Chuck and Chris and still trying to "master" the pitching wedge like Uncle Ralph.

2) a great fishing trip to Ontario, CANADA with family & Ralph & Helen's family.

3) Wrecking Rick's Honda motorcycle.

4) a fishing weekend to Northern Wisconsin with Rick and having to sleep overnight in their car on the return trip down through Michigan during a "Monsoon".

5) managing to escape Uncle Ralph's belt one summer day at our house while his boys faced the music, which should have included me.

6) being told I had to stay home from hearing Barbie's piano recital because I had gotten sick. However, I ran the thermometer under cold water, was allowed to go and didn't get to hear much because I spent the time throwing up in the bathroom.

7) the reunions at the Carrell's

8) playing hide & seek in the corn fields around the Carrell's.

9) playing checkers with Grandpa.

10) being comforted by the gentleness and soft spoken words of Grandma.

11) my saddest memories are losing my sister and not getting to know my grandparents as well as I would now have liked.



b. 20 Dec 1952 Oak Park, Cook Co., IL
m. 19 May 1974 LaGrange, IL
d. 23 April 1980 Iowa City, IA
Buried in Iowa City, IA


Has remarried


b. La Grange, IL



b. Mhlosheni, Swaziland
m. 15 June 1946 St. Paul, MN

Missionary- So. Africa, Dean of Mission School
W. W. II

U. S. Navy 1942-46
B.A. Wheaton College 1948
M.A. Theology, Wheaton College 1949
D.Th Uni of South Africa 1980

Now Dean, School for World Mission, Rosebank Bible College in Johannesburg, South Africa (since 1977)


b. Rethy, Belgian Congo, AFRICA

Missionary- So. Africa
letter writing, knitting & crocheting

B.Sc. Wheaton College 1945

Missionary in So. Africa since 1950
Has kept family photo albums through the years and does letter-writing to family as well as supporting churches and many friends.
Knits & crochets for grandchildren.

From Kenneth Lea Christensen- Written, I believe by Ralph Christensen.

I helped the grandparents and Uncle Ray on their farm the summer of 1938. Uncle Ray didn't trust me to drive his Model-T, it was all right to use his mule team. During the summer Uncle Ray went on a trip out west with Arlo and Arion. One day Grandma came with the keys for me to drive them to Allen. I finally got it started and drove them to Allen. I pulled in to park in front of the drug store but couldn't stop it. (I didn't know that half way down on the low pedal was neutral.) I had visions of ploughing into the store window. At the last minute I turned back into the street and parked on the other side. Then the radiator boiled over with steam blowing high in the air as if announcing to all my inexperience. After that we often drove to Ponca to visit the Schrams.

I can't remember when I first began riding horses. This we did mostly bare-back. We also rode calves and steers - or tried to. This was in preparation for the rodeos which were held every summer in Nebraska where we were growing up. While we lived there Dad was back in Africa at Mhlosheni helping the missionaries there. The farmers in Nebraska were very good to us and I was often with friends on their farms. Our entertainment was riding horses. There were canyons in Nebraska where there were wild plums and choke-cherries. We'd ride along and eat this wild fruit.

We liked to race the horses. They ran especially good going back to the barn.

When I was a freshman in High School I spent the summer working on my Grandparents' (Andrew & Mary Christensen) farm. Over the hill lived a cousin, Wayne about my age and we often did things together. One day he brought an old work horse over, riding bareback, and I got another old work horse that I had been using, and we took off to town (Allen, Nebraska) about 2 miles away, both riding bare-back. On the way we rode over a bridge and the hollow sound of the hoofs spooked the horses and they bolted with us holding on for dear life. Wayne's horse turned one way into the field where the gate was open. My horse turned the other way through the ditch, toward the fence, which had no gate. At the last minute the horse saw the gate and stopped dead. Things happened fast, so I don't remember the details, but I found myself with my legs wrapped around the horses neck and me with my head almost touching the ground in front of the horse but over on the field side of the fence. I let go with my feet and dropped into the field unhurt and the horse made a beeline for the home barn. When 1 looked across the road to the other field for my cousin, he was picking himself up out of the plowed field with his horse high-tailing it to his barn. We both had a nice walk home and never did get to town.



b. St. Charles, IL
m. (1) Donald Paul Chandler
(2) 30 Dec 1983 Glen Ellyn, IL

Piano teacher. Secretary
sewing, piano, walks

M. Ed in Guidance & Counseling


b. Oak Park, IL

art, literature



b. New Haven, CT

Honors student
piano, singing

on Pom Pom squad


b. Seattle, WA

Honors student

Cheer leader


b. Seattle, WA

Honors student
piano, singing

Pom Pom squad


b. Joliet, IL

loves everything & everybody


b. Hinsdale, IL



b. St. Charles, IL
m. Sue Stedman 4 Sept 1969 (divorced)

Painting & Home Improvements

Likes to remember the summer of '86 with nieces and cousins Leslie and Kelly Christensen (Grand Canyon)



b. Winfield, IL

works at clothing store

Wants to usher at Shakespeare Theatre.


b. Mt. View, CA



b. Tahoe Park, CA

school reports, artistic endeavors



b. Krugersdorp, SOUTH AFRICA
m. Belinda Ann Bauer 4 March 1977 (divorced)

Social worker
photography, outdoor-hiking, biking

M.A. Uni of Chicago in social work



b. Ottawa, IL

piano, violin, horse-back riding


b. Ottawa, IL

piano, playing with her dog



b. Krugersdorp, SOUTH AFRICA
m. (1) Cheryl Elizabeth Schweinfurth 27 Dec 1975 (divorced)
(2) Katherine Anne Terlat Stefanik 16 Oct 1981 (divorced)




b. Portland, OR



b. Philadelphia, PA
m. 28 Nov 1981 Annandale, VA


b. Columbus, GA



b. Lexington, KY



b. Discovery, SOUTH AFRICA
m. 3 May 1986 Boulder, CO

Uni student
camping, biking, hiking, crafts, writing, travel, church

Studying towards M.S. in Rehabilitation Counseling
Very involved at their church: leading high schoolers and counseling.


b. Kenosha, WI

camping, biking, hiking, tennis, all sports

Serving as medic in army until May 1988
Worked at Ravencrest Bible Chalet in Colorado for 3 years prior to military- ran the tape ministry, as well as hiking and ski retreats.

Leads high schoolers at church.

a. expected July '87