Consistent with her name, Fidele was not only a woman of faith but was faithful to her understanding of love and service to others. Fidele Mary Johns had a facility for making everyone feel valued and accepted. This gift served her well during her partnership in ministry with her late husband of 66 years, Rev. Ernest Johns. Beginning with Norwich, they served in Sarnia and Thornhill before finishing their ministry at First Baptist in Owen Sound where they lived for 34 years. After Ernie died in 2015 Fidele moved to Guelph in 2018 to live next door to her daughter Leanne Johns and son-in-law Stan Kozak. She is also survived by: Timothy Johns (Lindiwe Sibeko), Daniel Johns (Patricia), Christine Johns (David Gerrard); grandchildren Nicolas Baird, Amiani Johns, Thomas Kozak (Rebekah), Mise Johns, Nathan Baird, Daniel Baird, Lukas Kozak (Ginger), Rachel Johns, Gabriella Sibeko, Mwanzi Johns, David Baird; great grandchildren Kenneth and Margaret (parents Thomas and Rebekah).
People comment that on meeting her, Fidele showed through conversation, hospitality and kindness that she valued them, accepted them for who they were and wished them to feel welcome. Fidele was quietly competent in all things. Her family members will be wearing her exquisite hand-crafted clothes and sleeping under her quilts for years to come. She was an excellent baker, cook and gardener. She and Ernie instilled in their children a love of nature and hiking. Well into her 80s she could outwalk most people 30 years younger than her. Intellectually, she read widely. No matter what topic her children wrote on, she understood the manuscript and made helpful comments, a service she provided into the last month of her life.
Fidele and Ernie grew up in Sault Ste. Marie where they built their first house. Although they moved south to pursue the ministry, they returned to the Sault for summer vacations staying in a cottage they developed on Lake Superior. Fidele visited the lake every summer, including the summer of 2022. Many members of the extended family continue to live in the Sault which enabled her to maintain relationships with her many nieces and nephews. Fidele was the youngest and last survivor of her generation on both sides of the family.
A funeral service will be held Saturday, January 21, 2023, at 1 p.m. at Dublin Street United Church in Guelph. Face masks are requested for all attendees. A reception will follow. Interment to follow in Sault Ste. Marie later this year. Should anyone wish to donate to charity in Fidele's memory, suggestions are: First Baptist Church, Owen Sound; Dublin Street United Church, Guelph; Bruce Trail Conservancy.
Messages and condolences may be left at www.tricitycremaions.com. Please visit Fidele's obituary notice on Facebook.