"Mother of Ministers"

Thursday, September 20, 2012 Posted by Debbie Legg

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The plaque you see here came from our church.  In a recent remodel we lost several stained-glass windows, one of which had originally been donated by Hannah’s children, thus the plaque in her honor.

Hannah Jane Lappin was my husband’s great-great-great-grandmother.  This wife of Joseph, blind from early adulthood, moved with her husband and five children from Southern Illinois to Missouri in a covered wagon.  While in Missouri, Joseph Lappin became ill and the family decided to move back to Illinois.  Joseph never made it.  He died on the way, and was buried along the roadside in Missouri.

Hannah and the children did make it back to Illinois.  George, the oldest son, moved to Colorado to work for the railroad and sent money home.  That left blind Hannah with John, Sam, Will and Ida, in a log cabin with cracks so large that snow would accumulate on the children’s beds.

I’m not sure I would have much in common with Hannah.  A conversation might be challenging to maintain.  But, I do have many questions for her. 

How on earth did her three youngest sons grow up to become ministers who preached tent revivals, wrote books, and one becoming a dean at a Bible College?  How was she able to encourage Ida to become a schoolteacher, with a schoolteacher husband and family of her own?  How was it that people remembered her to be always happy, never discouraged?   How did she instill her love of Jesus so deeply into her poverty-stricken, fatherless children that six generations later, her descendents are still believers?

Unfortunately, I would really like to know those answers now, while my own sons are still at home.    
Fortunately, the Jesus she loved so well is the Jesus I love as well. 

Fortunately, I think we both know that He is the answer. 

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