Item 1994.053P/20 - Dressed for a wedding - Japan

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Dressed for a wedding - Japan

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CA ON00340 F3448-4-1994.053P/20

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1 photograph

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(1917-1993)

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Wilna Gratia Thomas (1917-1993) was a United Church missionary to Japan and church administrator. She was born in Saskatchewan and educated there (BA Saskatchewan, 1938), the United Church Training School and Union Theological Seminary, Columbia University (MA, 1948). She joined the Woman's Missionary Society in 1939, and in 1940 was appointed to work in Hamilton All People's Church. In 1942 she was promoted to Secretary, Younger Groups, of the Dominion Board. In 1944 she became one of the first woman chaplains in the Canadian Forces, remaining until 1946, when she returned to her former position with the WMS. In 1949 Thomas became a missionary to Japan and taught at Shizouka Girls School and later at Tokyo Woman's Christian College. In 1957 she was named Associate Overseas Missions Executive Secretary, and became the Executive Secretary in 1960. In that year she undertook extensive travel to mission stations in Trinidad, India, the Far East and Africa, returning in 1961. In 1962 she was named Associate Secretary (East Asia) of the new Board of World Misssion, from which position she resigned in 1967. Thomas entered the School of Social Work, University of British Columbia, 1967, and spent five years working in various municipal social service institutions in Vancouver. In 1974 she was invited to establish a social work study programme at Camosan College, Victoria, where she remained until her full retirement in 1982.

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Subject: Wilna Thomas in a kimono

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CAN

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ON00340

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