Mrs. Sharon Wilhelm '60 Ranalli Folkart - 2010 A Award Recipient
Bio from 2010
Sharon Wilhelm ’60 Ranalli Folkart receives the “A” award for her long-term and dedicated ministry to Ecuador.
Sharon and her late husband, Al ’58, began their ministry in 1968 when the family arrived in Guayaquil, Ecuador to serve with the OMS International. Al became the co-director of the OMS National Church, and Sharon served as mission treasurer and advisor to the Association of Women’s Societies.
In 1978, Al and Sharon, now affiliated with the D.M. Stearns Missionary Fund in Philadelphia, returned to Ecuador to concentrate on evangelism and church planting with the Spanish and with the Quichuas. Sharon began 12 years of teaching high school math, physics and Bible, and serving as Honor Society advisor at the Alliance Academy for missionary children in Quito, Ecuador.
To meet the need for spiritual leadership in the Quichua churches, Al and Sharon founded The Bible Institute of the Prophets (borrowing the name from Samuel’s school of the prophets) in 1986. In 1988, they began the second Bible Institute center in Pompeya, a church in the province of Chimborazo, founded by Al and a small group of believers in 1976.
In March of 1995, Al went to be with the Lord after massive heart attack and Sharon continued their ministry. She was joined by son Chris and his family in 1997 when they arrived to work with pastors, churches and church planting in Ecuador.
In 2002, Sharon extended the ministry and initiated a handicraft workshop in the village of Pompeya to help the Christians get out of poverty. Today, Sharon continues with eight teaching centers of the Bible Institute, in five different provinces, with 130 students and 400 graduates. Each June there is an intensive 15-hour course for graduates; in July a National Conference of Quichua Women; and in November an annual Youth Camp. In addition she is giving three monthly workshops for pastors and leaders. She also helps the Good Samaritan elementary school in the city of Riobamba, which provides education to the poorest of the poor, by getting sponsors for the children and by giving a bi-monthly Bible study for the teachers.
In March 2010, Sharon was joined in ministry by Charles Folkart. The couple married in Quito, Ecuador with 500 in attendance from her “Quichua” family. She and Charlie are in ministry together, teaching and ministering throughout the country. She and Charlie have no plans to retire. She says, “I have learned that God always prepares the means to fulfill the calling He has given you.”
Sharon and Al had four children, Chris Ranalli (Becky), Carmen Ranalli Morrison (Bob), Ramona Ranalli and Angela Ranalli Bartel (Todd), and have 13 grandchildren.
Other 2010 A Award Recipients
Rev. Grant Nealis '55
Mr. Daniel '75 & Mrs. Martha Faber '76 Hutchens