Violet Virginia Egly Ringenberg, born July 21, 1923, married Gerald Wayne Ringenberg on her birthday, 1945, and passed away February 4, 2013. They met in college and dated for 3 years before Gerald proposed. One can hardly mention one without the other. They have worked together complimenting the other for the last 67 years! Gerald’s ministry was enhanced, strengthened and encouraged by the love of his life, Violet. Likewise, with Gerald’s support and blessing, he encouraged her in her personal ministries also. Violet’s love has always been her Savior, her husband and family, and then her Alma Mater and the family from that institution.
While students at FWBI, the Ringenbergs were active in student government, leadership, and musical groups. Violet was introduced to the Prayer parent ministry while a student herself. Daddy Ramseyer’s second wife was her prayer mother. She had first-hand experience how influential and encouraging a “prayer parent figure” was in a college student’s life. This would never leave her. She would be blessed by this ministry as a student and years later she would be the blessing to countless others in this same ministry, but this time she would be the “prayer parent.”
Gerald was asked to preach and actually helped pastor a church while still a student. While interviewing for his first pastorate, the church really liked him and wanted to hire him but they stated they were hoping to hire a married man. Gerald replied, “I think I can take care of that!” He had wanted to ask Violet to marry him but not without a job. He went home, proposed and was hired! Violet’s response was “Yes I will marry you. It’s about time you asked!”
It is no surprise that once she and Gerald returned to the area, she became a strong advocate for those students at FWBC. Whether teaching children or adults; directing choirs; or working with local rescue missions, Violet always made time for the students and needs of FWBC. She quickly became involved with the Women’s Auxiliary which would later be called Friends of FWBC. From the 1960s to the closing days of 1992, she was an active prayer parent. She had over 100 students that were her “kids.” Through this ministry she would send encouraging notes, dinner invitations, and pray regularly for her prayer student. Even after the year’s commitment, often Violet remembered all her “kids” in prayer as they came to mind. She knew each one personally. She also played an active role in alumni activities through Phonathon, Alumni Council, 1945 Class Scholarship, Housewalk Committee, every Projects committee except for faculty lounge and cafeteria projects, and Prayer Warriors for FW Alumni and Friends.
It is rare to not see the Ringenbergs at every special event for the Fort Wayne campus. About the only thing that keeps them from that is Violet’s recent illness. Despite her illness, she is still advocating to the Father on behalf of her family, her friends, and her beloved Bible College family. She loves to visit still. She loves to know how to pray and if Violet and Gerald are praying, we all know, God has heard!
Submitted by: Shellie Burden