Retired CBF missions worker passes away

Ana D’Amico, who retired as one of CBF’s field personnel in 2006, passed away from breast cancer Aug. 25.

By Bob Perkins
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
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ATLANTA – Ana D’Amico, retired CBF field personnel and wife of David F. D’Amico, passed away August 25 at her home in Louisville, Ky., following a lengthy battle with breast cancer. She was 73.
 
“Ana D’Amico was a radiant Christian, an effective missionary and an authentic human being,” said Daniel Vestal, CBF executive coordinator. “All of us in Cooperative Baptist Fellowship who knew and loved her will miss her. It was a privilege to serve God with her.”
 
Commissioned in 1995, the D’Amicos lived in New York City from 1996-2004, serving as CBF representatives to the United Nations. The D’Amicos gained non-governmental organization status for the Fellowship at the U.N., which allowed them access to briefings at U.N. headquarters.
 
The U.N, which allows all countries to be heard equally, gave the D’Amicos and the Fellowship opportunities to connect with diplomats and their countries all over the world. The U.N. also provided a forum for the D’Amicos to communicate the Fellowship’s message of compassion.
 
“In the process, we had access to missions or embassies of the world community,” Ana once said. “Since we lived in the community of the U.N., many of our neighbors were representatives of the world community.”
 
The D’Amicos became involved in ecumenical groups, sponsored forums on issues relating to human rights and led weekly worship services at an interfaith chapel near the U.N. Their apartment became a center for informal meetings, fellowship and Bible studies with diplomats, and the D’Amicos estimate they hosted 800-1,000 people.
 
Rob Nash, CBF coordinator of Global Missions, recalled D’Amico’s compassion and hospitality.
“Ana was a model for all of us in Global Missions at the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship,” Nash said. “Her field personnel colleagues have shared with me their memories of her gracious spirit, unflagging hospitality and compassion for the most neglected. I'm grateful for her presence among us.”
 
The D’Amicos were serving in New York on September 11, 2001, when terrorists destroyed the World Trade Center. In the days and months following 9/11, the couple partnered with local churches and organizations to help meet the vast needs of the city. They also administered the relief funds sent by Fellowship churches across the country.
 
Grace Powell Freeman, CBF director of Global Missions Operations, said she remembers calling the D’Amicos to check on their safety, and talking and crying with Ana.
 
“Her compassion for people was as strong as anybody I know,” Freeman said. “Her love for people, knowing where they were hurting, and her desire to help them in any way she could. No task was ever too small or insignificant for Ana.”
 
Born June 19, 1936, in Rosario, Argentina, Ana graduated from the University of Buenos Aries in 1956. That same year, Ana and David married on Sept. 20. As David served many roles in missions and seminary professor, Ana served as patient relations supervisor at Kelsey-Seybold Clinic in Houston; interpreter/translator for Superior Court in Morris County, N.J. and a translator/editor in Louisville. She also served as Home Mission Board missionary to New York from 1985-1989.
 
The D’Amicos last assignment with CBF Global Missions was working as advocates for Hispanics in North Carolina. They retired in December 2006.
 
Ana is also survived by her daughter and son-in-law, Dr. Nancy D. and Tom Nickles, Lewisburg, Pa., sons and daughters in law, Stephen D. and Ana Cora D’Amico, Mebane, N.C., Kenneth D. D’Amico of Durham, N.C., and David E. and Amee D’Amico of Louisville, Ky.; sister and brother-in-law, Alicia and Peter Hercz, Los Angeles; grandchildren, Stuart, David L. and Elizabeth D’Amico, and Eric Nickles.
 
Visitation will be Aug. 27 from 3 to 7 p.m. at Pearson’s Funeral Home, 149 Breckenridge Lane, Louisville, Ky. Funeral and internment will be a private family ceremony. Memorial contributions may be made to James Graham Brown Cancer Research Center.
 
CBF is a fellowship of Baptist Christians and churches who share a passion for the Great Commission and a commitment to Baptist principles of faith and practice. The Fellowship’s mission is to serve Christians and churches as they discover and fulfill their God-given mission.

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