As we look toward the Memorial Day weekend, we wanted to take a moment to honor the memory of Kent Harmless, missionary to Honduras along with his wife, Rhonda, who passed away suddenly on February 4, 2013 in Tegucigalpa, Honduras at the age of 59. The following is a tribute given at his memorial service by WGM’s president, Hubert Harriman.
When Kent Harmless passed away unexpectedly in the early hours of February 4, 2013, it didn’t take long for an outpouring of love and support to flood Rhonda’s Facebook page, and this was one of the comments: “If God has an auto repair shop up there, heaven just filled the position of head mechanic!”
Without question, Kent is celebrating in heaven with others who have gone before him. Our understanding of our “second life” in heaven is dim, and we can only imagine the transformation in Kent as he can finally fully worship our Lord and Savior.
Over the years that we on earth were privileged to spend with him, Kent excelled at many, many things. He had an uncanny knack for giving old cars a new lease on life, fixing motors that had been deemed “unfixable,” and solving all manner of mechanical problems. Everywhere he went, whether he was fixing a church bus in Laredo, Texas, wiring a missionary’s home in Kenya, or teaching auto mechanics to underprivileged boys in Honduras, Kent used his skills to direct people to the Lord.
Kent adored his wife of almost 35 years, Rhonda, calling her his Queen. He loved his daughter, Teresa. His little granddaughter, Sydney, had a special place in his heart. Most importantly, his Savior, Jesus Christ, was the Lord of his life.
World Gospel Mission was fortunate to have Kent and Rhonda join the team in 2004, when they were appointed as missionaries to Honduras. They came as veteran missionaries, having served in Laredo, Texas, for 15 years with Churches of Christ in Christian Union.
Kent poured himself into Escuela El Sembrador, maintaining farm equipment, teaching in the vocational school, and helping with visiting work teams. He never missed a chance to pass on his knowledge of mechanics, always desiring to build up his students. Kent’s greatest joy was seeing the changes God made in the lives of the students.
He was not eloquent, but he was profound. He was not a preacher, but he proclaimed Christ’s love. Kent was not a linguist, but he was a master communicator. He was not a rich man, but he possessed riches beyond all measure. He was not a counselor, but his advice was always paramount. He was not always in charge, but people followed his heart, a heart that was committed to others and to a life dedicated to service.
Matthew 25:21 (NIV): “His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!‘ ”
Kent M. Harmless was a faithful friend and servant of the Most High God, and he is truly sharing in his Master’s happiness today. World Gospel Mission joins with his family and friends who are spread around the globe in mourning the loss of our friend and celebrating his life and legacy.
Be a part of Kent’s legacy by sponsoring a student at Escuela El Sembrador. Visit this page to sign up as a sponsor.