A Lifetime of Service

  David Cowan

  • 4 July 2012

Jean McDowall and her Relief Society Counsellor Marion Jones.

Jean McDowall is an outstanding woman in the community who values the opportunity to serve. At 85 she has macular degeneration and is legally blind, but she faithfully serves as the Warrnambool Branch Relief Society President, in South Western Victoria, and is ably assisted by her two councillors, Sister Marion Jones who is herself over 70, and Sister Valerie Dearden who is a service missionary in Warrnambool.

The Warrnambool News recently reported on Jean’s Church service. She became a member of the Church in 1963, in Perth, and said it changed her life completely for the better. At the time she had friends from many different denominations, but she was seeking to know the truth. She found it in the message of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Jean said, “The teachings of the Church gave a heightened purpose and direction in my life, as well as giving me opportunities to develop new skills and share talents.” Sister McDowall used to enjoy art and painted many pieces; she also wrote a book.

One of her cherished memories is of attending General Conference in Salt Lake City.

In 1972 she was sealed in the New Zealand Temple to her first husband Brother Keith Jackson. They served six missions together within Australia and overseas in the Philippines. One of those missions was to Ozamiz City, on the island of Mindanao, southern Philippines, where they provided leadership training to the locals. “I learnt about another side of people...in very poor circumstances, who are anxious to learn about Jesus Christ.” While Jean and Keith were serving a temple mission in the Sydney in 2000, Brother Jackson passed away.

Sister McDowall met and married Brother Keith McDowall ten months ago. Both continue to diligently serve the Lord to the best of their abilities.


PHOTO CREDIT: Image courtesy of David Cowan and used with permission.