One of the things I had been sharing with her batch was my dream of seeing our missionaries serve overseas. But I never thought the time would come when she would actually be able to go. Imagine my surprise when I heard that she had gone to China, where she felt called to go to. Another former PFM missionary and batchmate of hers (Ernest Ochoco Jr.), had been instrumental in opening the door for her foreign mission experience. She was able to teach English in China for a month but had to return home when her visa was not renewed. I thought that was going to be the end of her overseas mission. Surprise! When I met a friend of hers from Palawan and asked how Minnie is doing, she said: “Oh, she is a missionary in Africa!”
“Wala na si Ate Minnie. Kaninang umaga lang sa Chad, Africa where she is currently serving as a missionary health volunteer. Last night, comatose na sya. We prayed for a miracle. Then this morning we received the news of her death. It's hard to accept what happened pero ito ang kalooban ng ating Manlalalang. Ang magpahinga sya sa kanyang mga gawain. Let's pray for the bereaved family na nahihirapang tanggapin ang mga pangyayari sa dahilang biglaan ang mga pangyayari. Karereceive lang nila ng news from Ate Minnie's physician last night. Informing them about the slim chances of survival and that only a miracle can save her and then this morning she's gone.”
She contracted a severe and virulent strain of malaria. Last Saturday morning (August 4, 2012), her brother Matt in Sampaloc Church, got a message from Minnie’s doctor telling him her serious condition and the slim chance of her surviving. The following morning (August 5), they received confirmation that Minnie died.
As I close this tribute, I remember the time when she had to take a vacation because of health reasons. She asked for one month medical leave from PFM. But instead of going home or taking a rest, she went and joined a month-long crusade. When we frowned at her for not really taking a vacation, she said: “I am more rested when I am in a crusade.”
"Then I heard a voice from heaven saying, 'Write this: Happy are those who from now on die in the service of the Lord!" "Yes indeed!" answers the Spirit. "They will enjoy rest from their hard work, because the results of their service go with them." Rev 14:13 (GNB)
I am sure Minnie will be missed by her family, friends, and people she served. But I truly believe that those who are faithful to the Lord will one day see her again, walking with her Savior, Master and Friend.
You may check out Minnie’s blog of her mission experiences in Chad (Africa) at http://minnie4africa.blogspot.com/
You may also read the details of what transpired during her last hours, through her attending doctor's blog at: http://missionarydoctors.blogspot.com/2012/08/minnie.html?spref=fb&fb_source=message )
You may also download a PFM video with a clip of Minnie while serving in Palawan. Click this link and download the video "People Need the Lord."