Solveig H. (Pedersen) Lenhartzen went to be with her Lord and Savior on
July 2, 2010 after a short illness. She was 93 years old.
Solveig was born to Bjarne and Fanne Pedersen in Oslo, Norway on
December 4, 1916. She was the oldest of five children.
From an early age she had a desire to serve Her Lord, That desire was
realized when she was led to be a missionary in the Belgium Congo.
At Ebenezer Baptist church, in Oslo, she met Arne Lenhartzen, who also
felt lead to be a missionary in the Congo. They were Married on August
24th 1940. They had planned to go to the mission field right away, but
their plans were put on hold with the German occupation of Norway. While
they waited a daughter, Heidi, was added to the family on September 10,
In 1946 the Lenhartzens finally left for their first mission station at
Monga, Congo. They went out under the Norwegian Baptist Missions.
Solveig was captivated by the feel, sights and sounds of her new
country, but what touched her heart were the people. They were to become
not only her mission field, but also her friends and her love.
On October 3, 1947, they added another member to the family --
Terje(Terry). With the addition of Terje, the Norwegian Baptists could
not afford to the support the Lenhartzen family, and the mission board
requested that the family come back to Norway.
An American mission station in Nyankunde knew the Lenhartzens and asked
if they would come and work with them, and said the Christians in the
states would be willing to support them.
In 1953, the family moved from the western part of Congo to the
northeastern part to begin yet another adventure in their lives. Solveig
had been trained in Norway as a book binder and her talents were of
value to the publishing house in Nyankunde.
In 1960, with the independence of Congo, all missionaries were told to
leave the country. Arne and Solveig were not sure what they were going
to do. They were Norwegians, but their children were educated at an
American boarding school. It was decided the they would immigrate to the
United States. Thus another adventure was added to their lives.
Knowing some missionaries in Forest Grove, Oregon, the Lenhartzens moved
to the area and set up yet another home. Solveig, as before, was in awe
of her new country. Although she did not know English very well, she
quickly learned the language and the customs of the United States.
Solveig was so proud the day she stood before a judge in Portland,
answered all of his questions, and was received as an American citizen.
Even thought she was now an American and raising her family in the
“American Way”, her heart was still with the friends and workers she
left in Congo. Arne and Solveig returned to Zaire in 1969 where they
worked and made their home at the mission station in Lolwa and later at
the Mbulanzabu mission station.
In 1987, Arne and Solveig retired from mission work and made their home
in Nampa, Idaho. Arne passed away at home in Nampa on February 5, 1994.
Solveig enjoyed traveling -- she traveled extensively throughout Africa,
Europe, and the United States. She was deeply moved by her trip to
Israel and was in awe that she could say “Today I walked where Jesus
walked”. Solveig also enjoyed crocheting and tatting. She crocheted
afghans for all her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren and
also donated many of her afghans to local nursing homes.
She is survived by: her daughter Heidi Gump and her son and daughter
in-law Terry and Valerie Lenhartzen of Nampa; seven grandchildren --
Raechel Gump, Eric Gump, Megan Gump, Kristi (and Jesse) Nelson, Terry
James (TJ) Lenhartzen, Jennifer Woolum, and Jeremy( and
Nicole)Lenhartzen; daughter-in-law Shannon Conklin; three great
grandchildren -- Jayden Lenhartzen, Taylor Lenhartzen, and Jeffrey
Nelson. She is also survived by a sister -- Helena Haga, a brother --
John Pedersen; a sister in-law Liv Lenhartzen, brother in-law Kaare
Lenhartzen, and many nephews and nieces, all living in Norway.
The family would like to thank Treasure Valley Hospice for their
understanding and compassionate care, not only for Solvieg, but also for
the family. They have been a source of comfort and strength.
The funeral service will be held at 10:30, Saturday July, 10th , at the
Nampa Funeral Home, Yraguen Chapel, located at 415 12th Avenue South,
Nampa, Idaho, with a short graveside service following at the Kohlerlawn
Cemetery in Nampa.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations may be made in
Solveig’s name to your local church, mission program, or a charity of