Elmer Isaac Reimer, our much loved father, grandfather, great-grandfather, pastor, and friend, passed away peacefully in his son’s home March 19, 2017. He was born in Drake, Saskatchewan, Canada, on March 1, 1922, the third of seven sons and one daughter born to Frank and Gertrude (Boese) Reimer. He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife Catharina, and brothers Alfred, Harry, Arlie, and Leslie. He is survived by brothers Johnny and Albert, sister Betty, son David (Marilyn), grandchildren Kristen (Sean) Fender and son Nathan; Gregory (Amber) and children Adrianna, Bree, and Cate; and Jeffrey (Jessica) and children Charlie, Lillian, Anna, and Elanor.
He came to faith in Christ during a revival in their church in Dalmeny, Saskatchewan, and was baptized at the age of 14.
The extreme drought of the thirties forced the family to move to Steinbach, Manitoba, to find work when Elmer was a teenager. He worked in a body shop, lumber camp, and as a mechanic in a John Deere dealership.
He met Catharina (Tina) Peters at the Evangelical Mennonite Brethren church in Steinbach. They were married September 26, 1943. Their son, David, was born April 2, 1945.
Elmer felt called to the ministry and the family moved to Omaha, NE, where he enrolled at Grace Bible Institute. Within a few years, he had served as a summer pastor in Michigan and then left school to become the pastor of the EMB church in Jansen, NE. He served there for several years before returning to school in Omaha. In 1957 he moved to South Dakota to pastor the Kingsburg Community Church for several years before accepting the pastorate of the Carter Gospel Fellowship, a rural church near Winner, SD.
After 28 years at Carter, he and Tina moved to Newton in 1991, and Elmer pastored the First Mennonite Church of Burns, KS, for 12 ½ years.
Elmer was heavily involved in evangelistic meetings in churches throughout the Midwest and Canada, and in youth work primarily through Bible camps. Thousands of young people knew and loved him as ‘Uncle Elmer.’
In 2004, at the age of 82, he resigned the pastorate and took on the project of raising missionary support for the task of translating and recording into Low German the entire collection of J. Vernon McGee’s Thru the Bible radio teaching series, a five-year daily broadcast consisting of 1,297 individual half-hour programs of study from Genesis to Revelation. He became the world-wide Low German voice of the Thru the Bible series, one of more than a hundred languages into which the program has been translated and recorded. The Low German programs are currently being broadcast regularly to thousands of Low German-speaking Mennonites in Mexico, South America, Northern Germany, and Canada. He also translated the New Testament and portions of the Old Testament into Low German. His ministry impact will continue long into the future.
After completing the translation projects in 2010, he taught Sunday School at Grace Community Church until December of 2015, completing 75 years of continuous ministry. His godly spirit and faithful ministry will be greatly missed by his family and a host of people who have known and loved him.
Visitation for Elmer will be held on Friday, March 24th, 2017 in the Fireside Room at Grace Community Church, from 2:00 P.M.-8:00 P.M. The family will greet guests from 6:30 P.M.-8:00 P.M.
Burial will be held on Saturday, March 25th at 9:00 A.M. at the Burns Countryside Cemetery in Burns, Kansas.
The Memorial Service honoring Elmer will follow at 11: 00 A.M. on Saturday, at Grace Community Church.
Memorials have been established with Grace Community Church.