Wilson, Arthur John “Jack” (1907-1985)
Arthur John “Jack” Wilson: blacksmith/welder, minister and missionary; born 29 May 1907 to Robert Wilson and Fanny Josephine (Lowe) Wilson at Somerset, Manitoba. He was the oldest of three children with two younger sisters. His mother died when he was seven years old. His father did not remarry. Jack married Matilda Loewen in 1938 and they had three children, one daughter and two sons.
Jack moved to Alberta in 1935 during the Great Depression, eventually meeting Mennonites in the Swalwell and Linden area. He was attracted to the strong sense of community and spiritual life of the Christians he met in the Linden Church of God in Christ, Mennonite congregation, and realized that he was only nominally Christian. He repented of his sins, experienced a spiritual birth, was baptized and accepted into church fellowship as a member on 15 December 1937 in the Linden congregation. He was one of the early non-ethnic Mennonites to join this Mennonite brotherhood in Canada.
Wilson, with the encouragement and support of his wife Matilda, felt a strong call to missions and evangelism. In 1945 they sold almost all they had and left for Mexico to teach and model the Gospel among Mexican people, returning after twenty months because of Matilda’s health. They moved to Rocky Mountain House in 1948 and began a mission to the Cree and Chippewa people. If they were asked what church they belonged to, they fondly responded, “to Jack’s Church.” The Wilson family moved to Mt. Lehman, BC in 1952 where he supported his family working as a blacksmith and welder. He was called to the pastoral and preaching ministry of the Abbotsford Church of God in Christ, Mennonite congregation and ordained on 15 December 1952.
Jack, still the missionary, was called to Nigeria in 1963 where he and Matilda worked effectively for two years as church planters and teachers. After his return to Canada, he continued to be involved with preaching at special revival meetings, returning to encourage the churches in Mexico and to the mission at Rocky Mountain House. They were called to the Mount Ida congregation in Enderby, BC in 1972 were he continued in pastoral ministry. Matilda died on 25 March 1977 in Enderby. In 1978 Jack married Sarah Reimer Giesbrecht, a widow who brought with her a large extended family that he embraced. He lived his life in Christ, dedicated to generous service, making many friends and leaving a legacy of kingdom living among those he befriended and served. He died on 22 April 1985 in Kelowna, BC.
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MLA style: Wilson, Jim. "Wilson, Arthur John “Jack” (1907-1985)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. November 2006. Web. 20 May 2013. http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/wilson_arthur_john_201cjack201d_1907_1985.
APA style: Wilson, Jim. (November 2006). Wilson, Arthur John “Jack” (1907-1985). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 20 May 2013, from http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/wilson_arthur_john_201cjack201d_1907_1985.