Article begins with brief introduction to Grace Gibberd Hurford on p. . "Grace Gibberd Hurford's very long life (1900-2001) was one of mission in many forms and locations: particularly here she shared a reminiscence of her time in China during terrifying and fraught circumstances, broken by a leave in Canada and England in 1938-39. The Mukden incident and subsequent imperialist expansionist aims of Showa Japan in Manchuria, are here shown to have moved west. Grace Gibberd first served in the Woman's Auxiliary of the Missionary Society of the Church of England in Canada (MSCC) in K'aifeng. On her return, the mission work with Archdeacon and Mrs. Andrew -- with others, including Greta Clark, whose papers are in the General Synod Archives -- of the Vancouver College of Deaconesses, moved to Honan. As the Japanese front came perilously close, the missionaries walked across dangerous mountains to the lawless region of northwest China. From thence, by India and home, she came eventually to reside in London, Ontario, where she became a fixture of local work, especially starting the Diocesan bookstore. Her understated prose was typical of her constancy in remarkable and terrifying times, a quality of equanimity known by her many friends and acquaintances". (p. ).
In addition to her time as a missionary and teacher in China (1928-1945) interrupted by furloughs in 1932 and 1938-1940, Grace Gibberd worked with the Sunday School Caravan Mission in western Canada. "The summer of 1940 found me in Saskatoon, the way not yet open to return to China. A church van was going out for summer mission work. The mission worker, Miss Evelyn Hoare from England, had no driver. As I had just secured my driver's license and driven my first 100 miles I jokingly offered my services. To my chagrin, I was accepted and the next month added 1000 miles and many hair-raising episodes through both mud and drought to my driving experience. There also developed a warm and lasting friendship with my fellow-worker as we ministered to outlying farms and villages in the area northeast of Saskatoon" (p. 65).