Wesley E. Johnson, age 89, of Motley, Minnesota stepped into the presence of Jesus, and eternal glory, on Wednesday, November 25, 2020. He had accepted Jesus as his Savior in college and served as a Minister of the Gospel since the 1950’s. A funeral service will be held on Sunday, November 29, 2020 at 3:00 p.m. at Lincoln Evangelical Free Church, 1354 320th Street, Cushing, Minnesota, with Reverend Don Reigstad officiating. Visitation will be for one hour prior to the service, at the church. Burial will be in the spring in Crystal, Minnesota. Brenny Funeral Home of Staples, Minnesota is handling arrangements. www.brenny.com
Wesley Earl Johnson was born to Evelyn (Ekgren) and Earl Johnson, in Minneapolis, Minnesota on June 21, 1931. He grew up in the northwest suburbs of Minneapolis and throughout his teen years, pursued interests in boxing, fishing, music, and worked at a local National Tea Food Store. He attended Robbinsdale High School, graduating with the class of 1949. He then attended the University of Minnesota, first planning to pursue a Pre-Medicine degree. He transferred to Northwestern College, located then in Minneapolis, graduating with his degree in Bible in 1954, having been called to serve Jesus.
He was united in marriage to Carol Sandberg on June 28, 1952 in Minneapolis. He and Carol then moved to Chicago as he started seminary at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. Their son, Larry was born, in 1956. Wes received his Masters of Divinity degree in 1957. From 1956-1959 Wes was Youth Pastor at First Evangelical Free Church of Chicago. Their son, Rick, was born in Chicago in 1959. From 1959-1963 Wes served as pastor of Calvary Evangelical Free Church in Rochester, Minnesota. From 1963-1968 Wes served as pastor of Thief River Falls Evangelical Free Church, Minnesota. In 1967, while there, their daughter Tammy was born. From 1968-1977 the family lived in Valparaiso, Indiana as Wes served as pastor of Liberty Bible Church of Chesterton, Indiana. In 1977 Wes was called to be the Superintendent of the Great Lakes District of the Evangelical Free Church of America. In 1985 he received his Doctorate of Ministry degree from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. He served as District Superintendent until 1995, moving to Crystal Lake, Illinois and later back to Porter, Indiana. In 1995, he took the position of Assistant to the President of the Evangelical Free Church of America, and moved to Apple Valley, Minnesota. In 2006 he and Carol fully retired, moving to Motley, Minnesota and being involved at Lincoln Evangelical Free Church of Cushing.
Throughout his adult years, he still loved music, reading, travel, woodworking, painting but most of all his Savior and family and friends brought him greatest joy. He authored two books, The Right Pastor and Pathways and Ponderings.
In early 2020, with declining health, Wes moved to the Lakewood Care Center of Staples, Minnesota and was lovingly cared for there through his last day.He is survived by Carol, his wife of 68 years; children Larry (Lois) Johnson of Motley, Minnesota, Rick (Jan) Johnson of Kalispell, Montana and Tammy (Brian Teyema) VanDixhorn of Ingleside, Illinois; and sister Marie (Vic) Hauck of Ramsey, Minnesota; grandchildren Lisa (Charlie) Anderson and Kimberly (Charlie) Carlson, Sarah Johnson and Rachel Johnson, Katie VanDixhorn, Matthew VanDixhorn, Alison (Gerrit Immink) VanDixhorn, Ashley (Jay) Williams, and Whitney VanDixhorn; great-grandchildren Dayton, Camden, Ashton, Waylen and Hazel Anderson, Eli and Owen Carlson, Maia, Noah and Judah Johnson Mendoza, Asher Dahmm, and Sage and Scout Williams.