Centenarian Alumna Who Held CIU Distinction now with the Lord

March 14, 2016

Columbia International University alumna Ethelyn Watson went to be with the Lord on March 5 leaving behind two distinctions. She lived to be 101 years old, and she was the first married woman with children to graduate from CIU — and did so cum laude, above average academic distinction.

Watson and her husband Joe Watson, graduated from CIU in 1944 when the school was known as Columbia Bible College. They had known each other since grade school in Long Island, New York, and were high school sweethearts.  

In 1946, they were called to the mission field in India where they served for 23 years

Together in India, the Watsons translated Christian literature into Hindi working under the Reformed Episcopal Board of Foreign Missions. In addition, Ethelyn taught girl and women's Bible studies, and served as the general secretary for Christian education, coordinating Christian teaching material for all of the 14 Indian provinces. She was also involved in publishing materials used in Kenya and Uganda, coordinating yearly conferences, and even served as acting director for over one year.

In 1969, Joe was called to serve as rector of St. Luke's Reformed Episcopal Church in Murray Hill, New Jersey where they served for nine years until 1978.

Joe served part of his retirement years as a hospital chaplain until his home going in 2001, and Ethelyn was involved in a Bible study for 20 years.

The Watsons had two children: Lynn and Lloyd. 

Ethelyn's life verses are 2 Corinthians 12:9-10

And he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my strength is made perfect in weakness."…For when I am weak, then I am strong.

And Revelation 14:13

And I heard a voice from Heaven, saying unto me, “Write: ’Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from henceforth.’” “Yea,” saith the Spirit, “that they may rest from their labors, and their works do follow them.”