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Rev Harriet Ann Janssen

Rev Harriet Ann Janssen

Saint Paul, Ramsey County, Minnesota, USA
Death 20 Mar 1996 (aged 93)
Farmington, San Juan County, New Mexico, USA
Burial Farmington, San Juan County, New Mexico, USA
Memorial ID 66094105 · View Source
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Daughter of Seymour William & Mary Lenore (Fiester) Janssen. One of seven children. She never married but was the adoptive mother to several Navajo children.

Her Story:

On the brink of suicide and despair after she ventured out to California from her home in Minnesota following the death of her father, Harriet was introduced to Jesus by a sensitive woman she reached out to for a job. Working with the needy and talking about the Lord became a yearning in her heart.

She later went back to Minnesota where she eventually teamed with Elizabeth Swanson who could minister music while Harriet ministered the Word. One day, to each other’s surprise, they both shared how they were having desires to go to the Indian people. Several nights later Harriet had a dream and the Lord spoke: “Go to New Mexico, near the Arizona border.”

When all the local ministry doors closed, Harriet and Beth built themselves a travel trailer, hooked it to a jeep, and ventured out to answer the Call of God. They followed protocol and went by their denominational headquarters in Missouri who told them that the idea was a bad one and that they would not succeed.

Since Jesus was the Head of His Church, Harriet and Beth decided to follow Christ rather than man. Years later, after seeing their success and the women’s land they had bought and built the Mission Church upon, a denominational leader visited the Mission and told Harriet she was not “sanctioned” by the denomination and she did not have their permission for her work and ordered her to sign over all the land and buildings to the denomination. The Mission kept their land and buildings and switched affiliations to a different denomination.

The Lord also connected another worker with the two women; Wilma Mockry who worked in a Methodist Mission Boarding School as a house mother. For years the Mission raised and took care of several Navajo children that the State wanted to shuffle heartlessly through the foster care system. One child died because of an unyielding case worker who was determined to stop Christians from helping the Navajos.

In addition to their continuing work in Farmington, the Mission held Church services on the Navajo Nation Indian Reservation from 1962-1970 in Negeezi. A poem written by Harriet before she passed on:

The Burden

The burden for souls is a weight on my heart.
I cannot take a vacation and have it depart.
It does not breakdown like a wagon or a cart,
But pushes me up hill, downhill, lays more on my heart.
"My strength is sufficient" I hear him say,
"Work, for the night cometh, no time to play."
Like a loaded-down vehicle, its weight pushing on,
Unloading and loading as time goes on.
Directed by God to be burdened for these;
It seems to grow greater as I fall on my knees.
Burdened for Indians all over the land,
Especially the Navajos on desert sand.

A song written by Lanny Wolfe: "My House is Full, But My Field is Empty"

There is peace and contentment in my Father's house today,
Lots of food on His table and no one turned away.
There is singing and laughter as the hours pass by,
But a hush calms the singing as the Father sadly cries,

My house is full, but my field is empty,
Who will go and work for Me today.
It seems my children all want to stay around my table,
But no one wants to work in my fields,
No one wants to work in my fields.

Push away from the table.
Look out through the windowpane,
Just beyond the house of plenty
Lies a field of golden grain.
And it's ripe unto harvest,
But the reapers, where are they?
In the house,
Oh, can't the children hear
the Father sadly say,

My house is full, but my field is empty,
Who will go and work for Me today.
It seems my children all want to stay around my table,
But no one wants to work in my fields,
No one wants to work in my fields.

Who will go and work for Me today?

  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: Kathy
  • Added: 24 Feb 2011
  • Find A Grave Memorial 66094105
  • Jolene Chapman
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Rev Harriet Ann Janssen (13 Dec 1902–20 Mar 1996), Find A Grave Memorial no. 66094105, citing Greenlawn Cemetery, Farmington, San Juan County, New Mexico, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave (contributor 8) .