RAGANO, Josephine A., (Missionary for 61 years), went home to be with her Lord and Savior on Sept. 12, 2013. Jo was born in Tampa on Feb. 3, 1927. She felt her calling at the young age of 16, and after graduating from Jefferson High School in 1946 attended Columbia Bible College in South Carolina, graduating in 1952. She then attended an intensive 1 year nursing course in Toronto, Canada, and was led to Deadman's Cay, Bahamas where she served for 3Â½years. While there she was directed towards the country of her calling, Columbia, South America. She was led to serve under Worldwide Evangelization Crusade and served in Bogata for 16 years. In 1983, she was led to Mexico where she taught at the Bible Institute for the Missionary Revival Crusade. From there, she served in Seville, Spain, at an evangelical church. In 1997, at the age of 70, she returned home to Tampa and continued to serve on short-term mission trips to Spain, Russia, Mexico, Cuba and Nicaragua. In 2008, she moved to Clarksville, Georgia, to reside at a retirement community for missionaries. Throughout her life she served in various ministries, finding homes for street children, serving as a Professor and Dean of Girls in the mission's Bible Institute, teaching theology and preparing young Spaniards for Christian Service, and ministering to women in Christian drug rehab centers. She followed God's lead her entire life and ministered to all that knew her and never stopped serving Him. She touched the lives of thousands of people and spread the Gospel to the far reaches of the world. She was preceded in death by her father, Joseph Ragano; mother, Theresa Scaglione Ragano; loved sister, Mary Thomas; and her beloved niece, Karen Ripley. She is survived by her brother, Manny Ragano (Jacque), of Georgia; sisters, Rose Ciucio (Mike), and Nancy Vega (Manny); nephew, Manny A. Vega (Lisa); nieces, Priscilla Stone (Ed), Belinda Floyd, Debra Lewis, Darlene McLaughlin (Richard), Janice Perez (George), and Cherie Hardman (Lee); 18 grandnieces and nephews; 14 great-grandnieces and nephews; and one great-great niece. A Celebration of Life will take place at Maranatha Chapel, 15932 Lake Magdalene Blvd., on Sat., Sept. 14, 2013, from 3-5 pm. The family wishes to thank all of her friends in Georgia who stayed with her for 5 days and nights. The family would also like to thank all her friends who supported her throughout her ministry. Well done, good and faithful servant! In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Maranatha Chapel who supported Jo for many years.
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Published in TBO.com on Sept. 13, 2013