Please login to continue
Having Trouble Logging In?
Reset your password
Don't have an account?
Sign Up Now!
Register for a Free Account
Choose Password
Confirm Password

Your account has been created!

Sarah Pinkley

Texas/Mexico border and American Indian field
"The Holy Spirit asked if I was willing...'Yes’ was my answer."
By Rachel Elwood, Staff Writer, 2012

“The Holy Spirit asked if I was willing,” Sarah Pinkley wrote in 1953. “‘Yes’ was my answer.”

Sarah was born and raised in rural Ohio. The family’s dairy farm was a two-mile walk from the nearest church where Sarah and her eight siblings attended. At the age of 12, she felt the pull of the Lord on her heart and accepted Him as her Savior. While studying home economics at Ohio State University, she met and married Lester Pinkley. Several years later, they attended an evangelistic meeting where they fully dedicated themselves to the Lord and felt called to serve Him on the mission field.

The Lord led them to World Gospel Mission (then the National Holiness Missionary Society). They completed more Bible training at Cleveland Bible College (now Malone College), and they were appointed to the Texas/Mexico border in 1955.

After studying Spanish in Edingburg, Texas, the Pinkleys—along with their children, Arlene, Barbara, and Jonathon—moved to La Feria, Texas, to work at the Mexican Border Bible Institute. They served there for 14 years. Lester taught shop courses while Sarah taught home economics, Sunday School, and Vacation Bible School. In addition, Sarah served as the field treasurer and bookkeeper, ministered with Mexican girls, developed a 10-week course to promote Scripture memorization, and occasionally traveled with evangelism teams and prepared the groups’ materials.

Sarah and Lester transferred to the American Indian Field in 1970. During the transition, Sarah’s big question was whether she could love the Native American children the same as the Mexican children. But after their arrival, she said, “I did not have any trouble. I just had more of them to love.”

The Pinkleys served as instructors at Southwest Indian School in Peoria, Arizona, for 19 years. Lester taught auto mechanics, vocational training, and Sunday School classes. Sarah taught high school courses and Sunday School classes and served as a girls’ dorm mother and an assistant dietician.

In a 1977 Call to Prayer (now The Call) article, Sarah jokingly wrote that the activity in her home operated at the same intensity as Grand Central Station. “Our days are full of unplanned interruptions. At times, the Lord lets our plans be changed in order to give us greater blessings.” She admitted that she and Lester actually liked it that way.

Even after retiring in 1990 after 35 years of service, Sarah and Lester still wanted to be involved in ministry. They began to contact and visit alumni of the school. The former students were surprised and pleased that their former teachers still cared for them. This outreach of love helped to restore relationships and build new bridges among the former students. On Facebook today, alumni continue to comment on how much the Pinkleys meant to them and how much they appreciated visiting with them in their homes.

Lester and Sarah had been married 62 years when he passed away in October 2007. Their legacy of their commitment to each other, to those to whom they ministered, and to their Savior is an inspiration that will carry on in the lives of those they touched.

Sarah once said, “Having Jesus is having your loved one with you forever.” Psalm 91:1-2 (NIV) testifies of her life, “He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.”

World Gospel Mission joins with her friends and family around the world in celebrating that Sarah is in the presence of Jesus Christ today.

Support a Missionary
Global Impact Fund
Advancing the Great Commission through your partnership.