I’d just finished having my quiet time this morning and was about to blog a short reflection when I received the news that a dear friend, a woman I’ve known for 31 years, moved to heaven last evening. Writing about her today seems an appropriate way to honor this woman who influenced my life over the past three decades.
Margaret Bayne leaves an amazing legacy. She and her husband, Alf, founded Pacific Coast Children’s Mission, more commonly known as Camp Homewood. This was no easy task, but God called and He equipped, and Margaret met the challenge head-on.
Alf was a boat-lover when he met his future bride, a land-lubber living on the Saskatchewan prairies. He’d already answered God’s call to minister to children and families living on British Columbia’s coastline. When he asked Margaret to join him, she said yes.
The Bayne’s first home was a little wooden boat they dubbed the Goforth. For several years they chugged up and down the coast rain or shine, sharing the Gospel with families inaccessible by road—loggers and lighthouse keepers mostly. Then the Lord provided property on Gowlland Harbour (Quadra Island), and Camp Homewood was born.
I met Margaret in 1981 when I volunteered at Camp Homewood as a 23-year-old. She walked about the property with determination in her stride. Her blue eyes sparkled, and she spoke frequently and passionately about Jesus and the need to hide God’s word in our hearts.
Margaret’s passion for Jesus never waned. I saw it displayed consistently during the years our family lived at Camp Homewood (1996-2007) and it spurred me to pursue God as fervently as she did. I also admired Margaret’s intentionality in caring for people.
Family camps happened three times each summer and once between Christmas and New Year’s. Margaret embraced those weeks as opportunities to encourage women guests by hosting tea parties at her home. In the summer, she held them under a tree canopy in her yard.
Unforgettable, those tea parties were. Margaret spread the table with favorite china teacups. She asked questions about the women and their lives, and she simply loved them. She also loved the college-age women who interned at the camp, encouraging them to whole-hearted commitment to Jesus. And she loved me and my family. On the August day we loaded our moving van in 2007, for instance, this 90-something wee dynamo cooked a huge pot of soup and delivered it to our door so I wouldn’t have to prepare a meal for those who were helping us pack.
Married about 65 years, Margaret and Alf never had biological children but their spiritual family number in the thousands. I marvel at how God blessed the obedience of this woman who said yes to God’s call on her life despite it being far beyond her comfort zone, and how her obedience impacted men, women, and children for eternity. When I grow up, I want to be just like her.
Margaret will be greatly missed by Alf and by all who knew her. Our loss; heaven’s gain.
This is a beautiful tribute to your friend. I’m so glad I decided today to pop in for a visit to your site.
What a legacy… what an amazing God!
I’m glad you popped in, too. Yes, Margaret’s legacy is beautiful. What a godly example for so many. Blessings to you 🙂
I have been in overseas missions for so long and lost track of the Baynes. I had the privilege of ministering under them the summer of 1969 and what Godly examples they were to me. I am blessed that my sister forwarded to link to me or I would not have known. How can I get the address where bro Alf is so that I can express my sympathy and blessings to him? Have they still been at Homewood?
Carolynn, you can send an email to Alf through the Homewood website. The link is http://www.homewood.bc.ca
Yes, they’d lived on site all these years. Amazing couple.
When I grow up I want to be just like her… loved this
It says everything about this woman’s fellowship with God and man
She was a woman who faced life with strength and dignity. Proverbs 31 all the way!
Thank you, Grace, for the words that express the feelings of those of us who knew Marg. They were dear friends of my father and mother and embraced the young people who came to learn how to put into practice the truths they had absorbed in school. Yes, their spiritual children and grandchildren will be countless!
I have a hunch the memorial service will be very well attended because they’ve touched so many lives.
Thank you for this lovely post. Margaret was a delightful woman, fierce in her faith, always an encourager. She will definitely be missed! But as you said, our loss is heaven’s gain.
“Fierce in her faith”–well put! 🙂
Grace, I do so little ‘extra’ on the computer that I never got back on your site to see the response you sent me of writing to Alf through the camp website. This is 11 months later when now I saw this page and I am getting ready to go back to Liberia. Is he still living, and living with otheres? Is there no way that I can send a card? Carolynn Sharp – I will not likely get mail again at the above address – a relative’s