Vale Judith Howarth (nee Blackman)

Dec 13, 2023

ABM AID records the recent death of Judith Howarth (nee Blackman) and shares this contribution from long time ABM supporter, Moya Holle.

Judith was an ABM missionary in the 1960s. ABM AID gives thanks for her life of service to Christ’s mission.

Judith Blackman was born in the Riverina and grew up there.

In early 1964, Judy applied to the then Australian Board of Missions, offering herself for missionary service. She entered ABM’s training college, The House of the Epiphany, at Stanmore, NSW.

At the end of 1964, she was appointed to a relief administrative/secretarial position at St Luke’s hospital Embi in the Popondetta area of Papua, beginning in 1965. She was then appointed as Assistant to the Provincial Secretary in the Provincial Office in Lae.

Judith’s time as a missionary predated the full emergence of the Anglican Church of Papua New Guinea as an autonomous province within the global Anglican Communion.

After her three-year term, Judith returned to Australia, and did deputation work for ABM, visiting numerous parishes in Sydney and regional NSW, before becoming ABM Field Officer in Brisbane. In 1969-70, as ABM’s Youth Worker, she was focused on the Province of Victoria, working in country and Melbourne parishes. Judy left this position in 1974 on her marriage to Gerald Beverley and settled in Griffith NSW.

Judith continued her connections with the Anglican Board of Mission, including representing the Diocese of Riverina at ABM meetings. After Gerald’s death in 2000, Judy moved to Tamworth, was on the staff at Calrossy Anglican School, and was active in the Church in Tamworth.

Judith married the Reverend Bill Howarth in 2010 and moved to Armidale. Both Fr Bill and Judy continued their association and active support for ABM, primarily in the parish of St Mary’s West Armidale.

In 2016, Judith was presented with a Coaldrake Award, in recognition of her missionary service, and her lifelong contribution to ABM over almost sixty years.

ABM AID continues to support the work of the Anglican Church of Papua New Guinea as our partnership evolves.