Gracia Jones was born on January 17, 1959 in Cairo, Illinois. She grew up in Kansas City where she attended a private school and got to pursue her talents; music and socializing. She eventually heads off to college to Calvary Bible College where she acquired her bachelors in Christian Education. Upon graduation, the school offered her a job as a secretary, and soon after she met the man she would spend the rest of her life with.
Martin Burnham, Gracia’s soon to be husband, was a great guy. Gracia at one point in the story even compares his life and passion with that of William Carey’s after watching one of his drama presentations. Eventually, Martin asked Gracia on a date and, though she didn’t know how to respond immediately, she accepted. They started dating and she learned of his desire to be a missionary pilot. Later on, a few weeks after Martin had taken Gracia to meet his family, he took her to Burnham Baptist Church where he proposed to her. On May 28, 1983 they got married in Kansas City.
The newlywed couple knew they wanted to do missions work so they didn’t bother getting settled in Nebraska where they lived for a short time. Before long they began a boot camp with New Tribes Missions and they weren’t too jazzed about it. Even though Gracia had some trials along the way, she grew a lot upon departure. After boot camp, they decided they were needed most in the Philippians and began to raise funds to get there. Initially it didn’t seem like a promising effort, but they had faith that God would provide and that He did! Their support rapidly picked up and after a short delay, due to some happenings in the Philippines, they were off to the mission field.
They were awesome missionaries! Martin had an amazing heart not only for the locals, but also the other missionaries. Gracia was an amazing helper managing the radio for the pilots and also handling groceries, medicine, appointments, and flight needs. This is where her Calvary Bible College skills...
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