Late missionary couple remembered for their walk by faith

By November 3, 2023

USA (MNN) — The late Dave and Joy Mueller with Kenya Hope are being remembered with a celebration of life service tomorrow afternoon in Grand Rapids, Michigan after their deaths on the mission field.

Dave, Joy, and Kenya Hope volunteer Julie Holman were killed in a car crash in Kenya on October 25. The Muellers are survived by their three sons — Ian, Forrest, and Cameron Mueller, along with their wives and four grandchildren.

The couple served as executive directors with Kenya Hope for 13 years. Prior to that, they worked with New Tribes Mission, Partners in Compassionate Care, and Closed Door Ministries.

Ian Mueller says his parents were passionate about ministry at Kenya Hope, caring for Kenyan widows, providing clean water, and distributing audio Bibles.

Dave Mueller, Joy Mueller, and Julie Holman. (Photo courtesy of Kenya Hope)

Joy’s heart was especially with the widows they served at Kenya Hope. Each widow sponsored through a 24-month program receives food assistance, skills training, goats, and Bible instruction.

“She just saw the need of the widows in Sub-Saharan Africa was just like, ‘I can’t sit idle,” says Ian.

“The thing I want people to remember about my mom is she was impossible to contain. [She had] endless wells of energy powered by her love for the people that she valued and the people that God loves as well.”

Meanwhile, Ian says his father Dave was a handyman, known for fixing almost anything, “So taking a multi-year construction process and turning it into a two-week complete move-in — from prefabricated homes in the jungle for missionaries, to Ferro-cement buildings in southern Sudan, to water towers and water projects, churches, chapels, and school buildings in Kenya.

“A do-it-all guy. We called him MacGyver most of the time! The Kenyans called him ‘The General.'”

Dave and Joy Mueller (Photo courtesy of Mueller family)

Dave was also especially attentive to the audio Bible distributions. “These people walk everywhere, miles and miles and miles a day, and they’re just listening to the Word constantly,” says Ian.

“They would come to him like three or four years later and they would say, ‘It (the audio Bible) doesn’t work anymore. It’s been through rain and everything.’ He would hook them up with another one [and saw] the life that brought to so many people.”

The Muellers’ celebration of life service is on Saturday, November 4 at 1:00 pm EST. The service livestream can be viewed at this link.

You can read Dave and Joy’s obituaries here.

Ultimately, Ian says anyone can serve God as his parents did.

“You don’t need to be a super person because a missionary isn’t a special person. It’s just a job, and the job is faith.

“My dad would say you never graduate from the school of faith. It just gets harder. He would say he hated walking by faith, in all honesty. Even though he was an incredibly committed missionary, it never gets easier. It only gets harder. But Jesus is a light unto our feet and He guides the way, so you’ve just got to keep saying yes every time.”

Please pray comfort for the Mueller and Holman families, and for Kenya Hope as they grieve and continue in Gospel ministry.







Header photo courtesy of the Mueller family.

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