News & Events

We are sad to inform you that Ruth Thomson, our dear missionary, passed away on Saturday morning, January 12, 2019.

Friends of Ruth may call at the McCulloch-Watson Funeral Home, Durham, on Tuesday, January 15th from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m. A funeral service will take place at Durham Presbyterian Church, 205 Lambton Street East, Durham on Wednesday at 11 a.m. Spring burial at Maplewood Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations to Latin America Mission Canada would be appreciated by the family.

Ruth Thomson


After graduating from Toronto Bible College (now Tyndale University College), and doing her linguistic studies at the Universities of North Dakota and Oklahoma, Ruth joined Wycliffe Bible Translators. She completed her Jungle Training Camp in Mexico and in 1965 at the age of 25, she went on to Brazil to do linguistic research with the Kayapó, one of Brazil’s 200 tribal groups without a written language.

Together with another missionary from Unevangelized Fields Mission they turned that language into a written one, devised an alphabet, taught the Kayapó to read their own language and finally came to the goal of translating the New Testament and portions of the Old Testament and the JESUS film. That took over 35 years but it also involved literacy work, doctoring the sick (sometimes even pulling teeth), and so on.

In 1996, the New Testament was published and in the hands of the Kayapó, together with other Scripture portions and the JESUS film. Recently, due to the great demand, the Bible Society in Brazil made a reprint the Kayapó New Testament.

Over the years, Ruth continued dedicated to the translation work and arranging the distribution of the audio version of the Kayapó New Testament. Ruth’s other great love was for the children of the Kamolo Orphanage of Kenya.

Ruth was currently in Canada, and had expected to return to Brazil at the beginning of January, 2019, but her departure was delayed due to some recent medical issues.  On Saturday, January 12, 2019 at the age of 78, Ruth passed away at Grey Bruce Health Services, Owen Sound.

She is going to be deeply missed by her many friends and contacts in Brazil, Kenya, Knox Presbyterian Church, Wycliffe Bible Translators, and all of us here at LAM.

“Well done thou good and faithful servant” are words that aptly sum up Ruth’s life of sacrifice and obedience to God’s call upon her life.