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Kaufman, J. Norman (1880-1966)

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Mennonite Weekly Review obituary: 1966 Aug 11 p. 3

Birth date: 1880 Oct 28

text of obituary:

Retired Missionary, Pastor Dies at Goshen

Goshen, Ind. — Funeral services for Rev. J. Norman Kaufman, 85, retired pastor and missionary to India, were held Aug. 4 at the college Mennonite Church here. He died Sunday, July 31, at Goshen Hospital after an illness of two and a half months.

A native of Johnstown, Pa., Rev. Kaufman was ordained to the ministry at Rockton, Pa. in 1902 and to the office of bishop in 1941. He served as a missionary of the (Old) Mennonite church in India for more than 30 years, first going to the field in 1905.

In 1910 he was married to the former Elsie Drange, and she died in 1939. His marriage to Dr. Lillie S. Shenk occurred in 1941, and in 1945 they accepted another mission assignment in India. They returned to East Peoria, Ill. in 1949 where Rev. Kaufman served in the pastorate for 10 years. During this time he was elected moderator of the Illinois (Old) Mennonite Conference. The Kaufmans moved to Goshen in 1959.

Mennonite Weekly Review obituary: 1966 Sep 8 p. 8

text of obituary:


J. Norman Kaufman, son of Jacob and Catharine Kaufman, was born Oct. 28, 1880 near Johnstown, Pa. He died July 31, 1966 at Goshen, Ind.

In 1902 he was ordained to the ministry at Rockton, Pa. where, in addition to his service as pastor, he taught in the public school until his call to missionary work in India in 1905. In 1941 he was ordained to the office of bishop at the Pleasant Hill Church, East Peoria, Ill.

In 1908 he was married to Elsie Drange in India. To this union were born three children: Russell of Albany, Ore.; Paul of Orrville, Ohio; and Kathryn (Mrs. Carl Matson) of Portland, Ore. His wife Elsie preceded him in death in 1939. In 1941 he was married to Dr. Lillie S. Shenk. Surviving also are two brothers, Amos of Martinsburg, Pa. and Harry of Johnstown, pa., and a half-sister Vinnie (Mrs. Eugene Kaufman) of Johnstown, Pa. Also there are six grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

In 1917 he received his Bachelor's degree in Bible from Goshen College. He served three terms in India from 1905-1934, and one short term, 1945-1948. After returning to the States he served as pastor of the Pleasant Hill Church near East Peoria, Ill. from 1935-1945. During this time he was active in church committee work and served one year as moderator of the Illinois Conference. During the years from 1948 until they moved to Goshen, Ind. in 1959 he served as bishop and counselor of the Pleasant Hill and Highway Village churches. he also found time to write a book of personal anecdotes relating to his service in India.

After moving to Goshen Dr. Lillie continued her medical practice and "J. N." served as a fill-in preacher, Sunday schoolteacher and prayer group leader.

Dad, as he was referred to by his children, was deeply concerned about the spiritual life not only of his own family but for all who needed counselling and guidance in spiritual matters. He loved children and they responded with love for him. He had several hobbies which kept his mid active till the end. he was a faithful and loving husband.

The memorial service was conducted at the College Mennonite Church, Goshen, Ind., on Aug. 4, with Robert Detweiler, Edwin J. Yoder and S. C. Yoder officiating.

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