Pastor Greg Schiller, of Trinity Lutheran Church Cairns, in Queensland, has paid tribute to members Malcolm and Esme Beck, who were killed in a road accident on Christmas Eve.
The Becks, both in their mid-70s, were walking with their daughter Annette after attending a church service with her in Townsville when they were hit by a car. Both died at the scene.
Pastor Schiller led the double funeral for the Becks at Trinity before a congregation of about 300 mourners on 8 January. He said the couple’s deep faith shone through in their service to their congregation and community.
‘In their life together, Mal and Esme had their faith in Jesus at the centre’, Pastor Schiller said. ‘In church and community, they had generous hearts, sharing meals, giving flowers from their garden, visiting and praying for and with people. They were renowned for their hospitality – and everyone was made welcome, regardless of who they were or which cultural background they came from.
‘Their deepest love and desire was for people to know how much God loves them. Their faith in Jesus and their care for others was inspirational. Together with their daughters Sharon, Annette and Carolyn, we thank God for the gift of Mal and Esme. We will miss them very much.’
Mal and Esme Beck were retired Lutheran teachers, with more than 60 years of combined service.
A science teacher specialising in physics, Mr Beck began teaching in 1967 at Luther College at Croydon, Victoria, and then in Queensland taught at Concordia Lutheran College, Toowoomba, and Peace Lutheran College, Cairns. A teacher of German, English and Studies of Society and Environment, Mrs Beck started her career at Concordia Lutheran College, Toowoomba, in 1964. She also taught at Luther College, Good Shepherd Lutheran School, Croydon, and Peace Lutheran College, Cairns.