Blanche Horst


Blanche Horst, 94, died July 11, 2023, at Landis Homes in Lititz, Pa. She was born Aug. 30, 1928, to Martin K. and Barbara (Siegrist) Mohler in Ephrata, Pa.

In 1951 she married Nevin L. Horst, and two years later they answered the call to serve as missionaries in Ethiopia with Eastern Mennonite Missions. Blanche worked in a variety of roles — running the Mennonite Guest House in Dire Dawa, working with women’s groups and raising a family.

Throughout her life, Blanche was a teacher. She graduated with a B.S. in education at Eastern Mennonite College and continued studying at Millersville University. She first stepped into a classroom at Manor Mennonite School. Later she taught art and music at the mission station in Bedeno, Ethiopia, and English at the Bible Academy in Nazareth, Ethiopia, as well as at the Mennonite church school in Addis Ababa. Returning to the U.S. in 1976, she taught at Manheim Christian Day School and Locust Grove Mennonite School. In retirement, Blanche and Nevin served as missionaries in Enemasi, Kenya, from 1995 to 1997.

She possessed a deep faith in God, was dedicated to prayer and loved Scripture. From her time as a missionary to serving as a chaplain in retirement, she was committed to serving Christ. She was a member of James Street Mennonite Church.

She had a great commitment to hospitality, a lesson reinforced by her time in Ethiopia, and enjoyed making Ethiopian food. She cherished time spent with her children and her grandchildren and loved cooking for them.

She was predeceased in 2006 by Nevin Horst, with whom she had five children: Adelle Horst Ward (Richard) of Scotia, N.Y., Philip Horst (Sandra Voth Horst), of Lancaster, Phyllis Horst Nofziger (Harold) of Stevens, Rachel Horst McLaughlin (Larry) of Quinton, Va., and N. Timothy Horst (Donna Eberly Horst) of Leola. She is survived by four siblings: Miriam Witmer (H. Howard) of Lititz, Ruth Rudy (Carl) of Manheim, James Mohler (Janet) of Manheim and Barbara Gerber (Jim), of Goshen, Ind.; her sister-in-law, Electa Mohler; 15 grandchildren; and 15 great-grandchildren. She was also predeceased by her brother, Carl Mohler, and a grandchild, Joshua Ward.


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