Lovella Helen Thiessen was born on October 23, 1936, to Elizabeth (Schierling) and Cornelius Thiessen in Hutchinson, Kansas. She went home to be with the Lord on December 16, 2022. Lovella’s early education happened in country schools, being the only one in her grade during those years. When Lovella was eleven, she trusted Christ as her Savior and claimed 2 Peter 3:9 as her verse. She dedicated her life to full-time Christian service when she was a freshman at Central Christian High School in Hutchinson, Kansas.
Lovella attended college at Grace Bible Institute, later known as Grace College of the Bible in Omaha, Nebraska. At Grace she met Floyd Thiessen. Because they shared the same last name, though not related to each other, they were often seated together in their classes.
Their love for music brought them together, and singing in the Grace Notes Ensemble and Grace Chorale gave her joy. Lovella and Floyd were married on October 14, 1956, at Zoar Mennonite Church near Inman, Kansas. This union was blessed with five children: Kathy, Cyndy, Steve, Brad, and Doug.
Lovella and Floyd’s married life began in Omaha where she was employed at Mutual of Omaha Insurance Company. December 1957 found them moving to Topeka, Kansas, where Kathy was born. In December 1959, a move was made to Newton, Kansas, and Cyndy was born there. September 1960 found them taking their first pastorate at Fargo, Oklahoma; sons Steve and Brad were added to the family. In April 1964, a move was made to Colome, South Dakota, and it was here where Doug entered the family. In August 1965, the family moved to Follett to pastor the St. John Congregational Church, which they did for 29 years.
Lovella enjoyed being a wife and mother, sewing clothes for herself and her children as well as gardening. She also enjoyed helping her husband with the pastorate. Much of her work at the church involved music. Lovella and Floyd worked as a team, with him directing the choirs and her playing piano. Singing together started early in their marriage and later they added their children with family programs. She enjoyed teaching Sunday school, DVBS and piano.
In 1994, she began working at Twin Oaks Manor in Booker as an Activity Director. She dearly loved the work there with residents, using Bible study and music in various forms. She retired in 2000 and began volunteering at the Wolf Creek Heritage Museum, where she was soon hired as a part time employee. Again, her love for people and genealogy entered in and she enjoyed those years. From 1994-2015, she had the joy of joining Floyd as he served at many area churches as well as the Lipscomb Union Church.
Preceding her in death were her husband Floyd, her granddaughter Leisha Burrus, her parents, her sister and brother-in-law, Evelyn and George Ens, and her sister-in-law Arlene Thiessen.
Survivors include her brother Harold Thiessen of Inman, Kansas and her sister Rosalie (Leland) Flickinger of Hesston, Kansas, and her sister-in-law Selma Entz of Whitewater, Kansas. Her children: daughters Kathlyn (Rennie) Burrus and Cynthia (Tom) Bergmaier and sons Steven (Eileen), Bradley (Tanya), and Douglas (Jenny). Eleven Grandchildren: Caitlin (Jack) Andrews, Philip Bergmaier, Chelsi (Zac) Cardwell, Kayleen (Steven) Meckle, Brielle (Jason) Augsburger, Kristen Bergmaier, Kara (Steve) Piatt, Lyndsi Thiessen, Matthew Bergmaier, Kyle (Ashton) Thiessen and Shannon (Brandon) LoPresti. Thirteen Great-grandchildren: Thaddaeus and Rosalie Andrews; Brylee, Collins, and Callum Cardwell; Caleb Meckle; Abigail, Allison, Molly, Evelyn, and Henry Piatt; Kova and Graham Thiessen.
Lovella decided to donate her body to the Genesis Legacy program, which provides an opportunity to make an ongoing contribution to medical science and the education of healthcare providers.
2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
In lieu of flowers, memorials can be sent to Wolf Creek Heritage Museum, P. O. Box 5, Lipscomb, TX 79056; Hemphill County Home Health & Hospice, 1020 S. 4th Street, Canadian, TX 79014; or to a charity of your choice.
Wolf Creek Heritage Museum
P.O. Box 5, Lipscomb TX 79056
Hemphill County Hospital Hospice
1020 S. 4th Street, Canadian TX 79014