Julia Gerö (1927-2010)
In October 2010, our dear sister Julia Gerö from Hungary (aged 83 years) has passed to the Lord.
She was president of the European Baptist Women's Union (EBWU) from 1987-1992 and a former vice president of the Baptist World Alliance Women's Department.
After marrying Sandor Gero, a Baptist pastor, in 1950, Julia Gero became actively involved in, and eventually leader of, the Baptist women's movement in Hungary, attending various meetings and conferences in Europe. She was appointed Hungarian representative to the EBWU in 1982, and became its first president from the communist bloc of nations when she was elected in 1987.
In Memoriam: Julia Gerö
- by Yona Pusey, EBWU president 1998-2003
In a paragraph in the History of the European Baptist Women’s Union, Julia summed up her experience of travelling among the women of Europe: “.. . . the best way to stimulate closer fellowship and greater understanding is to pay personal visits to member unions.”
And visit she certainly did! Together with her vice President she travelled widely, even to Bulgaria (no visa available!) where one small group of believers memorably said, “You have come, and now we know that we are not forgotten.” This story was told in a tribute to Julia at a recent Day of Prayer celebration in West Wales – and still had the power to move one woman to tears.
So many stories will be recounted today as we celebrate her life and faith. She was a tower of strength to so many, and an inspiration to many more. Along with Nell Alexander of England she was the guiding light of my own presidency of EBWU, 15 years later, and I treasured every opportunity of visiting her in Budapest and later in Kiskoros.
A continuing theme of our conversations was the necessity for women in the west to live more simply and to share whatever God had blessed us with. She had seen at first hand so many of the struggles for survival of women in eastern Europe. On their behalf she continually urged her sisters in the BWA Women’s Department to stand against the tide of western materialism, by arranging simpler conferences and producing more basic literature, and by always having “the poor” of every continent at the top of their agenda. In this respect she gave EBWU a distinctive voice among the Continental Union presidents.
Julia, as you have moved beyond the sorrows and pain of this world to the presence of your dearly loved Lord and Saviour, I am privileged to salute you, and to add my thanks for your rich friendship.
"Well done, good and faithful servant!"