Doris (Lindberg) DeNeui attended Northwestern Bible College in 1939, where she studied under Dr. William Bell Riley to be a missionary. Her fond memories of college include singing in the choir, living in the dorms, and meeting her husband Arthur. “I have many happy memories from Northwestern, including meeting my husband. I remember I thought he was so cool. I’d say hello whenever we had class together, and I kind of chased him,” Doris said with a laugh. Arthur was studying to be a pastor at Northwestern. After graduation, they served together in church ministry for 40 years.
God began preparing Doris’s heart for ministry when she was young. “A lady in our church gave missionary reports, and read missionary letters once a month in Sunday school. This roused an interest in me for missions. The summer following my junior year in high school, our youth group took a bus trip to our Bible Camp where I met Kathryn Reynolds, a missionary to China. We prayed together, and I gave myself to the Lord for full-time Christian service.”
“Attending Northwestern affected my life completely. I met my husband, and I was so happy to be a pastor’s wife,” said Doris as she shared the impact Northwestern had in her life. After 72 years of doing ministry together, Arthur passed away in January of 2012. His legacy continues as their three children live out their shared passion for ministry.
If you talk to Doris, she speaks highly of her three children and the people they’ve become. Joel, her oldest, is a pastor at First Baptist Church in Blue Earth, MN. Paul is a pastor in Oklahoma, where he does nursing home ministry, and (like his mother) is the author of several books. Her daughter, Bette, lives with her husband in Albert Lea. One of her greatest joys is to be with family, “My daughter and her husband come to visit me every day,” Doris said with a smile.
Doris continues to minister to others through sharing her life in her books. At the age of 100, Doris authored Miss Mahoolala: A Coloring Book (with a family history). This children’s book has quite the history. It goes all the way back to her childhood when her mom called her Miss Mahoolala to describe her silly behavior at times. Doris wanted to do something special for her, so she created the book and dedicated it to her mom. After sharing the book at a 1994 family reunion, she put it away and actually forgot about it.
Right before her 100th birthday last April, she found the coloring book and decided to have it published with the help of her son, Paul. “My nephew, Dean Lindberg, is a professional artist, and he illustrated the book,” said Doris. “He used parts from my parents’ home in the actual book. It’s really special to me.”
Doris has authored two other books as well. At the age of 90, she wrote a memoir Ninety New One-Dollar Bills. She got the idea for the title from a gift of ninety one-dollar bills she received for her birthday. These bills helped her relive stories from throughout her life. Her other book was about the life of her parents.
Doris has kept up with Northwestern over the years and even attended homecoming a few years ago. Now, Doris is 101-years-old and enjoying life in Albert Lea, Minnesota. Her heart for missions is still evident today, and she helps to equip missionaries through the Doris (Lindberg) DeNeui Missionary Fund her son started in her honor. Anyone can give, and 100% of all donations are given to train and establish missionaries throughout the world.
We thank Doris for sharing her story with us and for being an inspiration to many. Doris’ story is a reminder to continue giving back and continue using the gifts God has given us, no matter what stage of life we are in. It is never too late to accomplish a dream.
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