Obituary: Virginia Rigmark

CHICAGO, IL (July 1, 2016) — Retired Covenant missionary Virginia (Carlson) Rigmark died Monday. She was 98.

virginia rigmark1She was born May 20, 1918 in Chicago, Illinois.

She graduated from North Park Bible Institute in 1947 and traveled to China as a missionary. Virginia married William Rigmark, a missionary of the Mission Covenant Church of Sweden, in April of 1949 in Hong Kong. Missionaries had moved there after leaving China due to the war.

They transferred to Tokyo, Japan, in 1949, where they served until 1969. The couple then served in Stockholm, Sweden, until 1973 with the Svenska Journalen, a Christian publication.

She and William were instrumental in forming the Covenant seminary in Tokyo.

William preceded her in death. She is survived by her daughter, Carol Rigmark.

A memorial service will be conducted at 3 p.m. Wednesday, July 6, at Northbrook Covenant Church.


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  • I had the privilege of meeting Virginia in 2009-2010. After I went to Japan, she wrote us a Christmas card every year, even though we had known each other for only a short period of time. The seminary she and her husband started is still thriving to this day and equipping many for service. Peace to her memory.

  • Virginia was an amazing woman. I only knew her later in life, but every time I saw her she would ask about my children by name and assure us she was praying for us. I was startled and honored to receive a two-page hand written letter last night, postmarked a few days before she died. It contained words of encouragement for us as we face an upcoming transition, and her experience of God’s faithfulness in spite of changes. She also wrote this: “Don’t know if you know I have cancer-At 98 I don’t want them to do anything but let it run its course. I am still in my apt. & caring for myself…All is well and I have complete peace–Enjoying each day for whatever it brings.”

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