Obituary of Susan Ruth Schalla
Susan Ruth Schalla (Wiebe) was born July 24, 1935 to Peter and Justina Wiebe (Peters) in Steinbach, Manitoba. She passed away peacefully on July 3, 2020 at the Bethesda Regional Hospital. Left to mourn is Max, her loving husband of 62 years, her son Mark (Milly) Schalla and their children Jeff (Katie) (Owen and Vienna), Jori (Kyle) Dueck; her daughter Angela (Eric) Klippenstein and their children Alan (Amanda) (Mason and Jade), Mike (Dani), Brendan (Andrea) (Amelia). She also leaves behind her sister Betty (Wayne), and sisters-in-law Kay and Darlene, many nieces and nephews and cherished friends.
She was predeceased by her daughter Maxine Ruth, her brothers Harry, Arnold, Jake and John as well as her sisters Agnes, Bertha and MaryAnne.
Susan grew up in a Christian home and remarked that although her family was poor, she didn’t know it, because love was always present. From a young age she had a tender conscience, hard work ethic and a love for others. Always one to plan in advance she picked out Max for herself when she was still a young girl. Waiting was difficult, as it always is when you have everything planned out, but her patience paid off when they were married May 3, 1958. She had spent summers picking potatoes and working in Winnipeg, but God had created her for loving a family and opening her home for hospitality. This really is the summary of the rest of her life.
The door was always open. Whether that was for a grandchild coming over for ice-cream at 10 at night or a stranger crashing into the ditch at 4 in the morning. “Come in, come in, I was up anyway.” And she usually was. Baking, cleaning or praying, the kitchen light was bright many hours a night.
The strongest memories are the ones that are repeated, and for her kids and grandkids that was the smell of farmer sausage on the BBQ, the table set, and lots of laughter after church on Sundays.
The grandchildren formed a special life-long bond with each other because life was lived together at grandma and grandpa’s. Climbing trees, running like hamsters in an overturned grain bin, board games, hand-hockey, sleep overs and of course lots of snacks! Like at a restaurant, but better, grandma would come to the toy room to take lunch orders. There was nothing that could not be requested. It would sometimes take a bit of digging, but with a bit of effort she could produce anything one could imagine out of one of her many freezers.
“Don’t knock, we like it when you just come in.” “We love you.” “I’m praying for you.” Were phrases the family heard on a regular basis. “I hardly visited anyone this week” was another common phrase. The first 3 phrases were always true. The fourth usually evolved into a guilty smile when she would be questioned about how many times her car was seen leaving the driveway. Her tiny frame was not big enough to contain all the love Jesus poured into her heart for others; it had to find a way out. Susan’s hospitality radar was always scanning “Who is new to the community? Who doesn’t have a friend right now? Who am I simply curious about?”
She loved her God and she loved her family. She loved her friends and she loved the families of her friends. And she loved complete strangers. She loved to sing and sang in the church choir for over 65 years. She loved activity. She loved parties and remembering birthdays and anniversaries. She loved being at every band concert, sport night, piano recital or special event a grandchild might be involved with. And she loved Max.
Reflecting on their life together Max said with a satisfied sigh “We had a good marriage.” They were united in their love for God and cared about each other deeply. Susan’s passing is difficult for everyone, but for Max most of all.
We grieve, but not as those who have no hope. Susan’s present experience exceeds our best imaginations.
Susan Schalla – forever with the Lord.
The funeral service for Susan will be held on Friday, July 10, 2020 at 1:00 p.m. at Southland Church, Steinbach, MB. Public is invited to attend the service, but due to current restrictions attendees must adhere to current church guidelines. Service will be live streamed. The link will be posted below prior to the service. Private family interment to follow.
The following is the livestream link: