Myra McIlwain was born and raised in Baltimore, MD. She was saved in 1977 at New Psalmist Baptist Church, where she received her initial call to missions. She later became a member of Immanuel Church of Silver Spring, MD. She served as a member of the Missions Council and was ordained a Deacon.
Myra made her first short-term mission trip in 1986 to “Prince of Peace” Home for girls in Antigua, Guatemala. Her next trip was to an Indian Reservation in Bimidgi, MN., where she helped home school the children of an Indian pastor. She returned another year to serve as a camp counselor at their children’s summer camp. One of Myra’s most emotional trips was smuggling Bibles into Communist China in 1988. She then went to St. Kitts, Virgin Islands to encourage a fellow missionary.
In 1991 she went to Mexico to teach the children of a missionary recovering from thyroid cancer. In 1992 to 1993, Myra volunteered with “The Door”, a Baltimore inner-city after school program for at-risk kids, where she held a Bible study for teens. She also volunteered with the “Cribs” program at the YWCA, where children under the age of six were housed until they could be placed in foster care.
In November 1995, Myra retired after 28 years of service at the Social Security Administration to serve full-time in Guatemala at the Songs of Joy Home for Children as Assistant Director and as Director of Cyrus’ House for girls.
In April 2004, after serving eight years at Songs of Joy Home for Children, Myra began a new ministry in Chiquimula, Guatemala to help poor women and their families. She started a new ministry called Ministerio Comedor y Educación de Paz, Chiquimula (MCYEP) and later a church called “Dios Es Nuestra Paz” (God is our Peace). Her desire is that one day a Guatemalan couple will pastor the church.
Myra believes that the mother is the heart of the family. She can influence her children and spouses for the good. Heal her heart and a whole family can be open to being healed and set free from the lie of poverty and failure and live in hope for what Christ has in store for their families, especially for the children. Many of the mothers have accepted Christ as their personal Savior. Through visitations and prayer Myra has and is developing loving relationships that demonstrate His heart.
Myra is the mother of one grown daughter, Lilith, who lives in the United States and two “almost adopted” Guatemalan children, Aimee and Angel Daniel.
Life is a journey with many different roads to travel and sometimes we must choose the road less traveled. In this journey, Myra never thought it would take her throughout the world but God uses ordinary people to do extraordinary things. Leaving behind all the comforts and the security of home, she went to places where she was not known and became known and beloved because of the hand of God on her life. This is a call to ordinary people to become extraordinary people of God and do exploits. Step out of your comfort zone and follow the leading of God. His path is always the right way to go.