Teresa Holmgren prayerfully and skillfully wrote the previous blog entries. Due to her 4-year battle with cancer and the rapid turning of the calendar pages as Tim grappled with how to live with her loss, it has been a number of years since a post has been written on this blog. Tim and I could have started all over with a new blog site, but Teresa’s words are treasured history, not only of the Holmgren family, but also of the New Tribes/Ethnos360 Mission family, and of the Lord’s doings in and through the Holmgren family. It is part of the legacy that Tim and I will build upon and carry forward; so, we will keep this original blog page going with its original posts. But before we add any life and ministry update entries, it is my privilege as Teresa’s former friend and acquaintance from PNG since 2005, and as Tim’s new wife since September, 10, 2021, to first honor Teresa. Only then will I be able to pick up the baton of expressing the rest of the story of the Holmgren ministry with Ethnos360. I hope, to some small degree, to be able to express as Teresa did, God’s faithfulness to work through his servants who love the Lord, His work, His workers, the lost, and the family God has given us.
I would, therefore, like this first re-launch of the blog posts to be the beautiful picture and obituary of my dear sister in Christ and Tim’s late wife, Teresa. To all who have prayed for the Holmgren family since Teresa’s passing, we offer a hearty “thank you!” As one who lost my missionary spouse (while serving in Papua New Guinea) and was left to raise our children alone, I know how much your prayers and support have meant for Tim and his children. August 27th is coming soon, the 3rd anniversary since Teresa’s home-going. Please join us in thanking God for Teresa and for the gospel, which defined her life and which gives us great confidence that we will see her again! And if the Lord should lead, encourage Tim and the Holmgren children that Teresa is still loved and not forgotten. Looking forward to that day when God’s dwelling place is among his people, and “He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the former things have passed away.” Revelation 21:4 With all my heart, Rhonda (Wilkinson) Holmgren
“Teresa A. Holmgren age 56, of Sanford, Florida, passed away August 27, 2019. She was born November 12, 1962 in Grand Rapids, Michigan, the youngest daughter of the late Vernon and Nellie (Esther) Moore. She was a happy little girl who brought joy to many especially her seven older siblings who loved to dress her up or come to her rescue. Teresa grew up in Sparta, Michigan, and attended Sparta Area Schools. She had an aptitude for music and played trumpet in the school band, solo ensemble competitions, and church services. She chose to follow Jesus early in life and demonstrated her love for God’s Word in many ways, including joining a Bible memory team which competed in area competitions. Called by God to be a missionary, Teresa attended Grand Rapids School of Bible and Music where she met her husband, Tim. They were married on December 19, 1981, and traveled overseas in 1983 to begin mission work in Papua New Guinea, where they labored for 24 years. Tim and Teresa moved to Florida in 2007 to continue working with New Tribes Mission, now known as Ethnos360. Teresa dutifully home schooled her children, taught English and science in multiple classes and co-ops, and served in various childcare ministries in her church. She courageously battled breast cancer for four years before going home to be with her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. She is survived by her beloved husband of 37 years Tim Holmgren, six children Kari (Ryan) Veenstra, Jillane (Mike) Purrazzi, Angela (Jacob) Lynum, Adam (Kirstan) Holmgren, Nicole Holmgren, and Jacob Holmgren. Teresa is also survived by her siblings Sue, Vern, Colleen, Jean, Beth, Karen, Mary Ellen; and two grandchildren Jade and Judah Veenstra.
A Memorial Services was held on Saturday, August 31, 2019 at 10:30 A.M. at the chapel at the New Tribes Mission Homes. Follow the link below to view the service. This link and other tributes can also be found on Teresa’s memorialized Facebook page.