Former pastor and missionary Jacob L. Hoffman, 86, died May 22, 2003 in Juneau.
Hoffman was born to Louis and Katie (Harder) Hoffman in Munich, N.D. He farmed with his father until age 24, when he married Hilda Louise Ortman of Munich, N.D. May 22, 1941.
Soon after their wedding, they went to Chicago to study at Moody Bible Institute. Hoffman served as pastor at the Bethel Mennonite Church of Lustre, Mont., for 10 years. He also assisted in the start of the Lustre Bible Academy, a Christian high school.
Hoffman and his family moved to Juneau in 1954 to help operate the Minfield Children's Home. He soon became involved in a Sunday school and church services in a house in Auke Bay, the beginnings of the Auke Bay Bible Church. Hoffman was the church's first pastor, serving there until 1963. In 1956, he purchased property in Auke Bay, on which the church was built.
In 1964, Hoffman and his wife held the first youth camp at what is now the Echo Ranch Bible Camp, located at Berners Bay. He served as camp director until 1968.
Later Hoffman served at the Calvary Bible Church in Ketchikan and the Port Chilkoot Bible Church. He also assisted at churches in Metlakatla and Petersburg. In 1975, Hoffman and his wife moved to Prince of Wales Island, where he started the Craig Bible Church and conducted Bible studies at a number of logging camps, including Thorne Bay, Naukati, Whale Pass and Hollis.
Hoffman retired to Juneau in 1982 and remained active in Church and camp work. He also enjoyed fishing and hunting, and regaled others with his stories until a month before his death.
Hoffman is survived by his wife, and children Dillene and Stan Love of Oregon, Paul and ChongUn Hoffman of Auke Bay, Verlin and Kathy Hoffman of Juneau, and Daryl and Laralee Hoffman of Washington. He also had 12 grandchildren: Karen and Marty Lange, Brian and Shelle Love, Amy and Matt McKinley, Andrew Hoffman, Anna Hoffman, Jaren Hoffman, Ana Hoffman, Bradley Hoffman and Rachelle Hoffman. He had six great-grandchildren.
A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Tuesday at the Auke Bay Bible Church. Visitation will be from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. Donations may be made to Moody Bible Institute at 820 N. LaSalle Street, Chicago, IL, 60610, or to the Echo Ranch Bible Camp, P.O. Box 210608, Auke Bay, AK, 99821.
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