We Remember

FRIESEN, Henry Peter – Service UPDATED

May 15, 1933 — July 15, 2023

A Memorial for Henry and June Friesen will be held on SATURDAY, JUNE 1, 2024, at 1:00 PM, at RUTLAND LIONS PARK, 175 Gray Road, Kelowna, BC (behind the Willow Park Church, close to their apartment and the Rutland Plaza Mall (Save on Foods) just off highway 33 in Kelowna). Bring your stories, and a lawn chair, there will be time to visit and have a coffee after as well.

As promised, we still plan to have a memorial for mom and dad, Henry and June Friesen. A gathering of friends and family, a time for stories and celebrations of lives that touched those around them in many ways. Covid stopped us once, a wildfire the second time, but now in spring we will go forward with eyes closed to any disasters, and enjoy the day no matter what.

Henry Peter Friesen was born in Winona, ON, May 15, 1933. The family were pioneer settlers in the new Mennonite community in Niagara, Ontario. His mom, Susie, doted on him as her “sweet Heinz”. Their dad worked hard to provide in those difficult early years, and Henry speaks of him as strict, but deeply faithful to God. Henry grew up on a 10 acre fruit farm and attended Virgil Public school 1939-1947, then Eden High school till 1951.

To quote Dad, “God in his great love and mercy saved me at the early age of eleven.” He credits the prayers and example of godly parents. As he and June later had children, I believe this was his example for his own family. He was baptized Aug 8, 1948, and joined Virgil MB (Mennonite Brethren) Church.

Next, Henry went to Eden Bible school and then to Ryerson Technical College. He received education as an Electrical Engineer technician, but his heart was always elsewhere. In Toronto, ON, he writes “my spiritual horizon and vision enlarged to include the whole world”. From then, sprinkled through his writings, are mentions of the joy of leading others to the Lord.

Henry met and married M. June Enns at MBBC (Mennonite Brethren Bible College) in Winnipeg, MB. They were married 62 years (1958-2020). Henry and June had three children: Pearl, Paul, and Bruce/Casper. As we grew, I can testify to the love and warmth of the home they created. God was always centre, and I have many great memories of family times, trips, and church activities, as well as nightly reading sessions, and those-not-so-appreciated times of correction.

In 1984, Henry and June were called to go to Neuberg, Germany to work with MCC (Mennonite Central Committee) and refugees. Henry speaks of the voices God used to move him to accept this. Bruce’s question, “Dad, are you happy in your Christian life?”, and God’s timing in the loss of his job of 27 years at GE Canada. Isn’t it amazing how God uses us in His timing!

Their work in Germany was followed by another assignment in Akron, PA, and then a final one in Nairobi, Kenya. They loved to travel, and God gave them the world to see as they worked for him.

Henry and June retired to the Penticton/Kelowna area in BC, and continued to travel many times, seeing family all over, and keeping Mom’s social side fed. They also continued to work with MCC doing SOOP (Service Opportunities with Our Partners) assignments. Henry was treasurer in Grace MB church for the years they lived in Penticton, BC, and he also loved his regular trips out to Oliver to work at Gleaners during that time.

Henry and June moved to Kelowna when Pearl and Ernie moved there in 2004, and loved being close to Henry’s sister and brother-in-law, Marg and Vern Borne, and many Wiebe cousins for the next years. Henry loved, followed, and cared for June until she passed away in God’s timing in December 2020. He was always the steady and quiet to her energetic busyness. He then moved to Smith Creek Baptist Housing in West Kelowna, BC.

Henry valued his God, his family, and the people God gave him to love. His gentle temperament, steady smile, and interest in others will always be remembered by many friends and family.

Henry passed away Saturday, July 15, 2023 as gently as he lived. He is now with his loving Saviour and Lord, and we will miss him. It has been an honour to walk these last years with him. Many thanks to Smith Creek Baptist Housing staff for their wonderful care.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Mennonite Central Committee (MCC).

Read June’s obituary: FRIESEN, M. June 1936 – 2020

If you wish to send a condolence, post photos, or share a memory, please scroll down the page to the area called “Condolences”.

SATURDAY, JUNE 1, 2024, at 1:00 PM


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Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) Link: www.mcccanada.ca


Service Information

Service Details

The service for FRIESEN, Henry Peter – Service UPDATED is scheduled for SATURDAY, JUNE 1, 2024, at 1:00 PM. Below you will find the map for the service location and the contact information should you have any questions.

Address & Contact for Service Location:


175 Gray Road Kelowna, BC


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  • Ruth Jantzen says:

    June, I’m so sorry for the loss of Henry. My condolences to you and family. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

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