KALAMEN, Audrey Eleanor
May 22, 1922 — February 6, 2021
Audrey Eleanor Kalamen, born May 22, 1922, passed into the presence of her Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, and joined her heavenly family February 6, 2021, at the age of 98 years. Audrey is survived by her son, David Kalamen, and her daughter, Barbara Giesbrecht, and their families.
Mom was born in Montreal, Quebec and her family were founding members of the first Pentecostal church established there. They had a profound encounter with the Holy Spirit as a family and when Mom married Dad, Arnold Kalamen, together they church planted and pastored churches across Canada: Campbelltown, NB (where David was born), Glace Bay, NS (where Barbara was born), Halifax, NS, Kamloops, BC, Montreal, QC, Yarmouth, NS, and Kelowna, BC. Mom was key to Dad’s ministry success, using her musical skills to lead the churches.
She had a love for the outdoors, for fishing, family campfires, playing piano, and cross-country skiing. She loved life: loved to laugh, loved family and friends, loved to travel, loved to play and sing, loved to pray, loved the presence of God. The staff at Cottonwoods loved Mom’s smile, her gentleness, her gratitude for every kindness, and her contentment with life.
We as a family have been deeply blessed by her over the years in so many different ways: we will miss the maple fudge, the butterscotch pies, the encouraging phone calls, her zest for life, the mischievous twinkle in her eye, her game to try new things. No one is lost when we know where they are, and Mom, we will see you again.
Mom saw a lot of changes during her lifetime – some good, some bad, some past, some very recent – but one thing that never changed was her love for God, His Church and her family. Thankfully, even in the midst of a very confusing COVID experience, Barbara and I were permitted to love on her and feed her lunch three times a week. Though she struggled to understand the nursing environment under COVID, she never had to struggle to understand her family’s love for her.
Mom’s last days were pain free and peaceful. Her room was inundated with gospel hymns and a wonderful sense of the presence of God and the love of her family. As a musician, and a woman of prayer, this atmosphere of worship which permeated her room, was key to creating this wonderful, peaceful transition. We will never forget the memories of singing and worshipping together.
Thanks to the staff at Cottonwoods, all of the family were able to say their final goodbyes to a precious mom, nanny, and great-grandma: David’s wife Carleen and children – Brodie Kalamen (wife, Natalie, and children, Evangeline, Kaden and Judah), Ryan Kalamen, and Kerri Frey (husband, Nathan and children, Kyla, Madison, and Rielynn); and Barbara’s husband Terry and children – Chad Giesbrecht (Jayden, Kylanna and Wyatt), and Justin Giesbrecht (wife, Shawna and children, Alexis and Carter). Alan Hart, her sister Lila’s only son, and his two children, Amy and Kelsey, were also able to visit with Mom before she passed. We are grateful for the loving, gentle and dignified manner in which the Cottonwood staff treated our Mom throughout her stay there, but especially during her last days.
Audrey was predeceased by her husband, Arnold Kalamen, March 13, 2013. Both Dad and Mom left us a wonderful natural and spiritual legacy and challenged us to serve people. Through Evangel Church and Kelowna Christian Center, three generations of Kalamens (Arnold, David and now, Brodie) and Giesbrecht’s have invested over 100 years of pastoral care into the spiritual life of this City. Every one of the family noted above carries a love for God, a love for His Church, and are ministry minded in reference to caring for the health of the souls of the people of this City. As her family, we have been richly provided for with everything that truly counts, for today and eternity.
Due to COVID restrictions and protocol, both the viewing and the graveside service will be strictly for family. She will be buried alongside her husband at Kelowna Cemetery Tuesday, February 16, 2021 with Rev. David Kalamen officiating. In lieu of flowers, if family and friends so desire, donations can be made to missions for Mexico through Kelowna Christian Center – www.kcc.net.
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