Remember your leaders, who spoke the word of God to you.
Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith.    Hebrews 13:7

The recent Gathering in Germany of most of our Proclaim community from their ministries around the world was the perfect setting for grieving the loss yet celebrating the life of our dear friend, colleague, and leader, Bob Johnson.  Since August we have been trying to come to terms with the reality of this loss so soon after Bob’s condition had seemed to be improving. His wife Alyce has been the one to give the rest of us consolation and strength as she has truly experienced a supernatural peace and comfort from God who has sustained her.

At the Gathering John Bowers led the teaching sessions each morning looking at some of the admonitions in scripture to “Consider . . . ” The first day began with: Consider your Leaders. This was an emotional, but uplifting and God-honoring time as we shared together so many remembrances of how Bob’s life has impacted ours in ways that are worthy of imitating.

We are sharing here a video that we watched together that morning, produced by Marj Speiser, which beautifully captures the spirit of Bob’s life and ministry.

Kathie Jenkins

My first job in Europe was typing for Bob Johnson. When we went to Belgium in 1982 where Jim taught at the Bible Institute, I worked as a secretary at the school. But every Friday I went to the Johnsons and attempted to keep ahead of Bob, then Northern Europe Director for Greater Europe Mission, typing up the reams of correspondence he cranked out by hand on legal pads. It was fascinating as through those letters I learned about ministry all over Europe, both in our mission and other missions, as well as in national movements. Only much later would I begin to understand the weightiness of Bob’s interactions and influence on all these fronts.  Through that I got a glimpse of the vision and leadership of this dedicated, charismatic, innovative, and a little bit ADHD missionary. That’s why, when Greater Europe Mission polled the troops as they were looking for a new mission director, I responded that it would be their loss if they considered anyone other than Bob Johnson. Of course, as God would have it, they did consider others and in retrospect I realized that God in His wisdom had a more creative agenda.

As it was, God had planned for Bob and Alyce to be put in intensely challenging life experiences that grew and purified them and proved their faith. And in His great sovereignty, he prepared them and led them to Proclaim where Bob’s insight is indelibly etched in the forming of who we are as a mission. In these years I have come full circle editing reams of Bob’s writings – everything from foundational documents to, most recently, the tour manual he was passionately writing right up till God took him home. And Bob, with his gift of storytelling, has gone way beyond the documenting of guidelines for a successful tour – he has penned a history and journey of Proclaim! International.  Through his keyboard he has both impacted the course of Proclaim as a mission and powerfully recounted and recorded God’s faithfulness through it all.

Bob is so desperately missed – but he gave more for the sake of God, for his co-workers, and for a spiritually needy world, than most people will in a much longer lifetime.

Well done, good and faithful servant.