Tribute – Bonnita Cooper

On behalf of all the CRC family we express our sympathy and loving support to all the family of Bonny Cooper who passed into the presence of her Lord and Saviour on the 26th June 2018.

Bonny was the model of a God honouring, supportive, and loving wife and mother. A gracious, warm and outgoing person.

She was involved in the Adelaide assembly of CRC Churches International from the early 1950’s. Married to Dudley Cooper in 1954 by Ps Cecil Harris, father of Ps Leo Harris the founder of CRC.

Bonny actively supported her husband Dudley in ministry firstly in Adelaide assembly, then as they pioneered a church in Cheltenham, Adelaide (now Portlife Church). They moved to Port Lincoln for 7 years, then back to Adelaide as an Associate for 3 years. From 1973 to 1979 they led the Devonport assembly in New Zealand, returned to Australia to the Frankston assembly, then to Waurn Ponds, Geelong, then moved back to live in Frankston and were involved in South Eastern Christian Centre for some years.

In all of these Bonny was a wholehearted support to Dudley as a local church Pastor, as a State and National leader of CRC in the 1980’s, and then in writing the history of the first 50 years of CRC “Flames of Revival” completed in 1995. She did many, many hours of typing as the book was written.

Along with all the ministry involvement Bonny was an excellent mother raising 5 children and very interested in her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.

Adjusting to life without Dudley, and with failing health, the past 7 years have not been easy for Bonny. Now she is released from the limitations of her earthly body and is rejoicing, in our glorious hope, the presence of her Lord and Saviour.

The funeral service will be held at 1.00pm on Wednesday 4th July at Peninsula City Church, Frankston.

Pr Mike Cronin
National Missions Director
CRC Churches International Australia

Tribute to Bonnita read out on the occasion of her funeral

Dear family and friends of Bonny,

Deepest condolences on the passing of one of the founding mothers of our CRC Churches International Movement.

I’m writing from Papua New Guinea where Pastor Barry Silverback and myself are currently ministering together. Unfortunately we cannot be with you for today’s celebration Service of Bonny’s life, but you are all in our thoughts and prayers.

When I came to Christ as a teenager in 1971 in the Adelaide CRC under Leo  Harris, Dudley was one of my pastors. I couldn’t help but love & respect him and Bonny as they exhibited such friendship to a young boy who was quite wild and not at all familiar with Church.

I remember being so saddened when they and their family left for New Zealand, particularly as their son David and I were friends. My wife Cathy felt the same, as she loved the way they conducted their family life and it left a positive imprint on her life.

What an amazing faith journey Bonny had, supporting her wonderful man across South Australia and then New Zealand and then to Victoria.

Dudley could not have accomplished the unique roles God opened up for him without Bonny’s faithful support.

There were some tough times, particularly when Dudley became the CRC’s third ever National Leader in 1985. It was such a privilege to serve under him as a new member of our National Executive Team and my admiration for him and Bonny only increased in those crucial 3 years.

He steered the CRC ship to safe waters through the tumultuous period after Leo Harris’ sudden death in 1977, and he and Bonny will always have a special place in the hearts of the CRC pastors who witnessed this period.

After finishing up as National Leader in 1988 Dudley & Bonny undertook the massive project to chronicle the first 50 yrs of our CRC history up to 1995. What a fantastic read their book ‘Flames of Revival’ is, and we encourage all our CRC Trainee pastors to be inspired as they immerse themselves in this book.

Bonny is now with Jesus and enjoying her reunion with Dudley.

On behalf of the CRC’s National Executive and National Council, I salute Bonny Cooper and honour her amazing contribution to our denominational family that now stretches across the world in around 1,000 Churches.

Well done good and faithful servant.

Pr Bill Vasilakis

National Chairman
CRC Churches International Australia