On Friday, November 26, we received a message that Winston Mattsson-Boze had been called home to be with the Lord. It was shocking because, as far as we knew, he was in good health and active. He and Ingrid were visiting family in North Carolina at the time of his passing. Would you please pray for Ingrid and the rest of the family during this difficult time?
Winston was a founding board member of the Assemblies of God International Fellowship (E4 Ministry Network), and he served from 1985 until his retirement in 2020. He served as the vice president for the last five years, and I appreciated his wisdom and his godly counsel.
At the 2020 conference, Winston was honored with the AGIF Founder’s Award recognizing his efforts in fulfilling the Great Commission. He was a pioneer in the short-term training of National Christian Evangelists and Pastors throughout the world.
He led Herald of Faith from 1982 until 2008; and continued in his teaching and ministry. His ministry was widely acknowledged and endorsed by numerous Christian leaders around the world.
The thrust of his ministry with Herald of Faith was the development of the “Pastor in the village.” This motto is a reference to those who do not have access to formal training but are nevertheless called by God to lead people.
Reflecting upon my relationship with Winston, I do not doubt that I am a better leader because of him. Winston had a gift for presenting alternative viewpoints. I did not always agree with him, but as “iron sharpens iron,” decisions rendered by the board of elders were better informed as he challenged us to think and see things from different perspectives.
Winston was a gifted communicator, speaking concisely and economically. During the many years that we were together in conferences, he rarely preached for more than 25 minutes. However, he could say more in less time than practically anyone else that I have ever known.
I do not doubt that Winston derived some of his greatest joy from the training and preparation of pastors and teachers. Throughout his lifetime, he traveled many miles to fulfill his calling, but he did not confine himself to tools and methodologies of the past. He embraced videoconferencing, which extended his teaching ministry throughout the world.
India was a mission field in which Winston invested much time and energy. Because of the time zone differential, he would often conduct classes and seminars during the middle of the night. Winston told me of one such occasion that happened while he and Ingrid were traveling here in the United States. At a campground, he had to set up his computer in the restroom. In part, because that was where the Wi-Fi signal was the strongest, and so Ingrid could continue to sleep.
Winston did what was necessary to do his part to fulfill the Great Commission.
Among his educational achievements: a bachelor’s degree in English; a master’s in Education; and a Ph. D. in International Christian Relations. Winston was fluent in three languages, including Spanish and Swedish. I recalled several years ago, we were together in Dallas, at a Bible college graduation, where he interpreted himself, flowing in both English and Spanish.
It was Winston’s privilege to work with the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, coordinating committees in Sweden, Norway, and Finland for “Global Mission,” a worldwide event in 1995. In 2018, Winston accepted the call to pastor the Arena Congregational Church in Wisconsin.
Finally, I will miss his friendship and wise counsel. He was steadfast in his faithfulness and his love for Jesus. I owe him a debt for his encouragement and support. His legacy lives on through many people whom he nurtured and discipled. I know that he was greeted with the words, “well done, good and faithful servant.”