Susan Secrist came to Lausanne in 1972 to serve as secretary to Wally Wenge. Her education and experience as a business college teacher equipped her well for this role. She participated in several outreaches while based in Switzerland. After a couple years she went to Sunland, CA and continued helping Wally from the base there.
Dan and Susan corresponded (using paper and the postal system!) for seven years and met here and there around the world at YWAM conferences. He had been her youth pastor in Olympia, WA and introduced her to YWAM when he left to join the Around-the-World team in 1970 with Floyd and Sally McClung.
At a YWAM conference in Desert Hot Springs, CA they began a "special relationship" and on May 14, 1977 they married in Olympia, WA.
Shortly thereafter they went to Argentina to help lead a YWAM outreach during the World Soccer Cup games. Susan was the key administrator in the city of Mendoza where she found housing for over 200 people when everyone said it would be impossible. But "with God, all things are possible." They stayed for a year and led a bi-lengual DTS in Buenos Aires.
In 1979 they returned to Olympia, WA and founded an Assemblies of God church, www.faithassemblyoflacey.com
She assisted her husband, Dan, for the next 27 years to establish a mulit-staff, missions-minded church that has sent out hundreds of people to many parts of the world both as career missionaries, and short -term missionaries. Her contribution was enormous as she did practically every task in the church at one time or another (except that of senior pastor!). She was a writer and developed curriculum for children and adults. She was passionate about Jesus and personally won many souls to the Lord. Most Sundays you could find her at the doors of the church welcoming people and watching for newcomers. Countless people commented that the first impression Sue gave was the main reason they returned to worship at the church.
She was also politically active, and was well known at the local level for her advocacy of Christian values in that marketplace of ideas. She was re-elected many times at the precinct level.
In 1994 she was diagnosed with breast cancer and had a mastectomy and chemotherapy. But it returned and after several years of battling she was ushered into the presence of Jesus on January 21, 2007. Her funeral attracted 1200 people and was a celebration some described as "a revival service" for the joy and spiritual impact it had. One example: she had created a button for people to wear on outreaches, "Ask me about Jesus." Shortly before she died, she requested that we attach one of those buttons to her dress after she was gone. So, as people filed by her coffin to pay their last respects, they were greeted with the message, "Ask me about Jesus." The irony was not missed! Her humor was legendary.
She and Dan have two chidren, Justin and September Secrist. Justin went to a DTS in Spain where he met Angela and they married. Just 10 days after Sue died, Angela gave birth to her first grandchild, Micah Secrist. Her legacy lives on in the lives of the thousands she touched with the love of Jesus.