Jay Benson Memorial Service
Jay Benson Memorial
Memorial Service starts at 10:00 AM EST
at LifePoint Church in Goshen
Jay Ellsworth Benson 68 of New Paris, IN, died January 5, 2013 at Ft. Wayne Lutheran Hospital. He was born on May 16, 1944 in Peoria, IL to John C. Benson and Mary C. (Welles) Benson. The Benson family moved to Winona Lake when Jay was in the fourth grade. At age 11, Jay and his brother Dale (14) made headlines in the Warsaw Times Union when they were rescued from their smoke-filled basement bedroom by Winona Lake Fire Department chief, Bruce Howe, using the air-pack opened the very day their house caught fire. Local residents followed daily news reports of the two boys’ recovery from this event which almost took their lives. Jay graduated from Warsaw High School in 1962 and from Greenville College in 1966 with a Bachelor of Arts degree. In his senior year he was chosen by the faculty to appear in Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities. The following year he received his Master of Arts degree in journalism from Syracuse University, New York. Jay served as managing editor of Light and Life, the denominational magazine of The Free Methodist Church of North America. He served as editor also of Youth in Action magazine and Current, a magazine for pastors. From 1972 to 1976, the Bensons served as literature missionaries in association with Kalam Hidup, the publishing house of The Christian and Missionary Alliance in Bandung, Indonesia. During this time their son was born, and Jay coordinated the publishing of three million copies of the Help From Above Scripture booklet in three languages for World Missionary Press, many of which were distributed through C&MA ministries. In 1976 Jay and his wife returned to the U.S. to work with World Missionary Press (WMP), a worldwide donor-supported ministry of publishing Scripture booklets and Bible-study booklets in more than 335 languages for free distribution worldwide. He first served as Assistant to the President (father-in-law and WMP co-founder, Watson Goodman) in the areas of production and distribution. In 1987, he was named vice-president of WMP, and 17 months later was appointed President by the WMP Board of Directors. During his tenure as president, WMP more than doubled production volume, and in 2012 reached the highest level of contributions in its history. His vision was to dramatically increase production to meet the urgent needs around the world, trusting God to “do the impossible” in providing for that increase. In answer to prayer, this increase was in process at the time of his sudden Home-going. Jay was known as a man of prayer with a passion for the Word of God and the urgent need for it throughout the world. During his years at WMP, he traveled to 78 nations to encourage distributors and overseas contract printers as well as to produce films (now available free as DVDs) to show the need for God’s Word and how it transforms lives. Jay sought to maintain the founding core values of WMP, including: (1) dependence on God through prayer to provide needed resources; (2) focusing on producing God’s Word rather than man’s opinions and providing it free of charge to both recipients and distributors; (3) maintaining an economy of operation, including paying the same hourly rate for all staff, from janitor to president, and using the donated time of hundreds of volunteers. He had just completed a comprehensive draft of WMP Core Values for use by possible future leadership. He married Victoria Raye Goodman on October 28, 1967. He is survived by his wife Vicky. Surviving children include Jeffrey C. (Dana) Benson of Aurora, IL. Surviving siblings include Dale (Barb) Benson, M.D., of Indianapolis, Indiana; Paul (Barbara) Benson of Anacortes, Washington; Dan (Kathy) Benson of Colorado Springs, Colorado. Yoder-Culp Funeral Home, Goshen is in charge of arrangements. Visitation will be from 2-4 and 6-8 p.m. Friday, January 11th at the funeral home. A memorial service will conducted at 10 a.m. Saturday January 12th at LifePoint Church, 1006 S. 16th Street, Goshen with burial to follow Violett Cemetery, Goshen, IN
All memorial gifts will be used to
provide Scriptures to the world.