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Local Writer Irons Out Devotional Inspired By Mother’s Day Gift

At nearly 88 years old, Gloria J. Dennie recently published her first book, “Ironing Board Devotions: Writings from a Life of Ministry, Marriage, and Motherhood.” A resident of Waynedale’s Stone Lake Subdivision for 27 years, Gloria’s journey into published authorship began in March 2022, shortly after becoming a widow and while in failing health. Her story is not just about her late entry into the literary world but also highlights a lifetime of quiet contributions to Christian literature and a deep-rooted connection to her family and faith.

It all started when Gloria, sorting through family records to give to her eldest son for safekeeping, uncovered her own collection of writings. For years, she had been quietly crafting articles, many of which found homes in various Christian magazines. Her first article was published in MOODY MONTHLY in September 1968, and it set the stage for numerous others that appeared in 22 different Christian publications over the years. However, most of her family remained largely unaware of the extent of Gloria’s literary endeavors.

Gloria’s eldest son, Steve, who retired as the Communications Director for the Church of The United Brethren In Christ of Huntington and himself an accomplished author and publisher, played a pivotal role in bringing her writings to the public. Discovering the depth and quality of her work, he was moved to compile and publish these into a book, presenting it to her for Mother’s Day in 2023. The title “Ironing Board Devotions” harks back to her first published article, emphasizing the theme of finding divine inspiration in everyday tasks.

Gloria says, “I never considered myself to be a serious writer, busy as I was working full time, serving as the wife of a minister, and mother to three sons. But it has been exciting over the years to share my experiences through print media and receive letters from pastors and laymen alike who have been touched by a particular article or poem.”

Gloria’s personal history is as compelling as her writings. She and her husband, Donald, who she met at Huntington University, enjoyed 67 years together before his passing in December 2022. Initially resistant to being a minister’s wife, Gloria found herself deeply involved in this life after Donald felt a call to full-time Christian service. Together, they served various communities across the United States, contributing to their spiritual and communal lives.

Aside from her literary contributions, Gloria has led a robust secular career. After moving from Huntington, IN to Harrisburg, PA in 1966, she worked as a typesetter, among other positions, showcasing her adaptability and skill across different states and jobs. Her prowess in typesetting and administrative roles underscores her dedication and hard work, qualities that resonate through her literary works.

The metaphor of the ironing board, where Gloria found much of her inspiration, reflects the unassuming yet profound nature of her writings. The book includes not only articles and essays but also poems dedicated to neighbors who supported her through various phases of her life. Her continued love for ironing symbolizes her appreciation for life’s simple, rhythmic tasks, which often provide space for reflection and inspiration.

Gloria’s dedication in the book poignantly captures the essence of her life shared with Donald. It reads, “To Don, my beloved, faithful partner of 67 years. A devoted husband, always supportive of my role as a mother working outside the home. But most importantly, a Christ-centered role model for our three sons—fun-loving, but firm. Our first 18 years were comfortable, perhaps even ho-hum. But when God swooped into our lives, calling us to full-time Christian service, things really got exciting! Amazing adventures, multiple moves, cross-country travel, and meeting head-on the challenges of new bodies of believers. What a joy and sacred trust to be called by God into His service! I miss you so much, Don. But God led us together on a beautiful, incredibly-fulfilling journey, didn’t He! I look forward with great expectation to experiencing the joy and peace you felt in your final days as I take my own final journey HOME. ‘In the sweet by and by, we shall meet on that beautiful shore…’” This dedication underlines the profound personal and spiritual bonds that inspired her to share these experiences through her book.

“In Ironing Board Devotions,” readers encounter a woman who has seamlessly blended her roles as a mother, wife, minister’s partner, and writer, enriching the lives of those around her through both action and word. Her book, available on Amazon, is a testament to a life well-lived and the quiet yet impactful presence she has maintained through decades of faith and family life. This is a story of a woman whose late-stage authorial debut encapsulates a lifetime of experiences, proving it’s never too late to share one’s journey with the world.

Gloria notes that “Ironing Board Devotions” as a title may seen “dated,” but it was at my ironing board where I received most of the inspiration for my articles. I still love ironing!

Gloria’s book is available on Amazon for $8.95 ($2.95 for Kindle) here: a.co/d/cJynSPC

The Waynedale News Staff

The Waynedale News Staff

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