ABEL

ABEL The Reverend Stewart Abel died peacefully in the early morning hours of December 8, 2007 in Calgary, Alberta in the care of his loving wife and children. Born on September 11, 1914 in Lacombe, Alberta to Scottish immigrant parents, James and Wilhelmina Abel, Stewart was raised on the family farm which is still worked today by his extended family. After graduating from high school, he undertook pastoral studies at the Canadian Nazarene College in Red Deer, Alberta. Upon graduation in 1939, Stewart was assigned his first congregation at Chisholm, Alberta. Shortly thereafter he became pastor in nearby High Prairie, where he met Sophie Hartshorne Keay, the woman who would become his loving wife, companion and help-mate in the service of the Lord for the next 63 years. The couple was married on June 26, 1944. In a career that spanned nearly seven decades, Stewart served as pastor not only in Chisholm and High Prairie, but in Port Alberni, British Columbia, Stettler and Sedgewick, Alberta, and in Melfort, Saskatchewan. In 1959, he moved with his wife and children to the United States where he was pastor in Britt, Ottumwa, and Indianola, Iowa, and finally in Oregon, Illinois. In 1976, Stewart was asked to return to Canada to pastor at Sedgwick, Alberta where he built the new Nazarene church and parsonage. Stewart served there until his retirement in 1980. Unable to remain "retired" he accepted positions as "interim" pastor over the next 20 years for congregations in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Lacombe and Calgary. When his body was too tired to support the calling of his soul, Stewart entered Newport Harbour Care Center in Calgary shortly before his 90th birthday. Even though he was often confined to a wheelchair he gathered residents for Sunday services in the tiny nursing home chapel. Soon the congregation outgrew the chapel and moved to a larger multipurpose room. After a series of small strokes made it impossible for Stewart to continue the services, his wife, Sophie, took up his ministry. Each Sunday, until the time of his passing, Stewart continued to attend the services where he welcomed residents to this simple house of the Lord. Stewart Abel has returned home to Lacombe for his eternal rest in the arms of the Lord he loved so dearly. He is survived by his wife Sophie, their four children; Lois Abel-Priester of Bloomfield, Iowa, George Abel of Calgary, Mavis Gibson of Belleair, Florida, and Janis Abel of Calgary. The Reverend Abel was blessed with five grand children, Heather, Elisa, William, Scott and Molly as well as a great-grandson, Logan. His legacy of devotion to his God and service to his fellow man will live on through his family. Funeral services will be held on Wednesday, December 12, 2007 at 1:30 pm in the Church of the Nazarene, Lacombe, Alberta. The family will be present to receive those who wish to pay their last respects to the Reverend Abel one hour prior to the service. Expressions of sympathy may be forwarded to: wfch@telusplanet.net (Subject: Abel). Wilson's Funeral Chapel & Crematorium serving Central Alberta with locations in Lacombe and Rimbey in charge of arrangements. 403-782-3366 403-843-3388 “A Caring Family, Caring For Families”


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