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Catherine E. Bell

August 25, 1936 — July 27, 2023

Noblesville

Catherine E. Bell

 

Catherine E. Bell, 86, of Noblesville, Indiana passed away on Thursday, July 27, 2023 at her home.  She was born in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on August 25, 1936 to second generation missionaries David and Jemima (Milln) Angus of Glasgow, Scotland.  In addition to her years in Malaysia, her upbringing included time spent in Australia due to Japanese occupation of Malaysia during WWII as well as Scotland where she spent much time with her grandmother and namesake, Catherine Milln, a woman who would have significant influence on Catherine’s life and faith.

After years of single adulthood, much of it spent teaching in Hong Kong, Catherine met widower Gordon Bell of Newcastle, England, in Hong Kong in 1966, marrying him with a year of meeting and becoming the mother to his four children. Following a time in Hong Kong where a fifth child was born to the family, they moved to the US: first Racine, Wisconsin followed by Indianapolis, Indiana where another child was born and finally to Syracuse, New York where they live for the balance of their married life in.  After the death of her beloved Gordon in 1998, Catherine spent a few additional years in Syracuse before relocating to Indianapolis, Indiana to be near her youngest daughter and son and their families.

Throughout her adult life, Catherine’s primary vocation was that of an educator spending over 30 years teaching primarily English and Bible to middle and high schoolers.  She loved literature for herself and then loved sharing that joy with her students.  Even more, she loved sharing the thrill of meeting God in the Scriptures.  Catherine was beloved by her students not only as a teacher, but as a mentor as well.  Students to this day speak of her influence, some who even became teachers themselves because of Catherine’s impact in the classroom.

In her time outside of work, Catherine gave herself to what was even more important to her: her family.  Both on her own and with her children and grandchildren, she especially enjoyed gardening, baking, sewing, doing puzzles, walking (and cross-country skiing in younger years) in God’s creation, and of course reading.  She was known to always search for the perfect personalized gift for those she loved including those gifts that were so personalized because she sewed them herself!  But most of all in regard to her family, she loved each one for who they are and prayed for them faithfully and constantly. 

As significant and fulfilling as her work was, and even more, her love and care for her family, most important of all in life to Catherine was living in the reality of her relationship with her Lord Jesus Christ. This reality of life with God touched every role she had as wife, mother, grandmother & great-grandmother, teacher, mentor, and friend, guiding her in wisdom & courage and enabling her compassionate love of others.  And her relationship with God led her to be a fierce woman of prayer, interceding for others – family, friends, connections, and even strangers - that each would know and experience God’s unconditional love and goodness in their lives. Her life of prayer was a treasured personal experience, but also one that she enjoyed sharing with others individually and in small group settings.

Words are not adequate to speak to how much she will be missed in this life and how deep the grief is that she is no longer living in body in this world.  And words are not adequate to convey the joy and gratitude for the gift of who she was to her family and friends and for the reality that indeed she lives now in unhindered communion with God in Jesus Christ.

Catherine is survived by her six children and their spouses, 12 grandchildren, and 3 great-grandchildren: daughter Cynthia Bell; daughter Donna Bell; daughter Miriam (Bell) Chamberlain and her husband Tom with grandchildren Sarah Chamberlain and Ian Chamberlain, and great-grandchildren Cole & Rhys Chamberlain and Persephone Simms; son Gordon Bell with grandchildren Jasmin & Jayden Bell and their mother, Noel Crowley-Bell; daughter Trina (Bell) Kochanowski and her husband Michael with grandchildren David, Noah, Micah, Seth, and Caleb; and finally son David Bell and his wife Betsie with grandchildren John David, Hudson, and Catherine Jane. 

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her beloved husband, Gordon Bell. 

Services will be held on Friday, August 4 at Common Ground Christian Church–Midtown, 4550 N. Illinois St., Indianapolis, IN 46208.  Visitation will be from 12:30 pm – 3 pm in the sanctuary followed by a Memorial Celebration Service at 3 pm. 

Memorial contributions may be made to Faith Heritage School in Syracuse, New York - https://faithheritageschool.org/ - where Catherine taught for 30 years, Far East Broadcasting Company - https://www.febc.org/ - the ministry her husband Gordon worked for in their early years of marriage, or in support of her friend, Shigeko Yamaguma, missionary with SEND International to Japan - https://send.org/give/missionaries/yamaguma.

Condolences:  www.randallroberts.com

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Past Services

Visitation

Friday, August 4, 2023

12:30 - 3:00 pm (Eastern time)

Common Ground Christian Church

4550 N Illinois St, Indianapolis, IN 46208

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Memorial Service

Friday, August 4, 2023

Starts at 3:00 pm (Eastern time)

Common Ground Christian Church

4550 N Illinois St, Indianapolis, IN 46208

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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