In Memoriam: Rev. John Frederic De Vries (1936-2020)

Rev. John Frederic De Vries
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The life of John De Vries was a passionate dedication to "go and make disciples of all nations,” (Matt. 28:19). From pastoring churches, to his work at the World Home Bible League, to the founding of Mission India, to preaching around the country and around the world, his passion never wavered. A prolific writer, De Vries wrote numerous Bible study guides and books, including his most popular, Why Pray? Through his work at the World Home Bible League and Mission India, millions of people have been introduced to Jesus Christ. De Vries died Oct. 25.

A graduate of Calvin College (now University) and Seminary, De Vries was ordained in 1961. He served Luverne (Minn.) Christian Reformed Church and Hope CRC in Grandville, Mich. While at Hope he wrote several Bible correspondence courses that developed into Project Philip, an evangelism training program. He began working for the World Home Bible League in 1969. During this time he made his first trip to India where the great need made an unforgettable impression on him. In 1977, he accepted a call to Highland Hills CRC in Grand Rapids, Mich., and began work on founding Mission India. By 1983, he had accepted the CEO position at Mission India and soon became a very prominent figure within the global church community.

De Vries enjoyed spending time at the family cottage and especially loved fishing. A dedicated grandfather, he never missed a graduation or special celebration and traveled to see each of his grandchildren accomplish their many successes. He relished sharing with them his love of the great outdoors.

De Vries is survived by his loving wife of 62 years, Adelaide (“Atts"); four children and spouses; 15 grandchildren and three great grandchildren. 

About the Author

Janet Greidanus is a freelance news correspondent for The Banner. She lives in Edmonton, Alberta.

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