April 18, 2013

Remembering Martha Johnson

Remembering Martha Johnson

By Jerry W. Kram

It would have taken more than a 10 inch snow storm to keep the members of Bethel Lutheran Church from honoring the memory of Martha Johnson on Sunday.
Johnson and three of her grandchildren, Benjamin, Julia and Luke Schuster, were killed in the Johnson home in New Town last November. At the time of her death, Johnson was the president of the Bethel Lutheran Church Council. Sunday, the room in the church where people gather after services every Sunday was named the Martha Johnson Memorial Social Hall.
“We felt it was necessary to keep her memory alive here at Bethel Lutheran Church,” said Rev. Grant Patterson. “The social hall, which has always been a nameless room, is really a scene of so many activities of our church, especially fellowship activities. It seemed appropriate that we name that room in her honor as a way of keeping her memory alive here at Bethel Lutheran.”
Johnson’s husband Harley, her surviving grandchildren Eva and Christian Schuster and many other family members attended the dedication on Sunday despite a severe winter storm that shut down highways across the entire state.
“We had the old Lutheran pot luck meal as part of the celebration,” Patterson said. “I was surprised that so many people came because of the snow. It turned out to be a very well attended event. That made me feel glad for Harley and the other family members. They were able to see the community support for their dear Martha.”
Patterson said Johnson would have wanted people to be cheerful at the dedication and he was glad how the afternoon turned out.


The Weather Network