Local Minister, Author Meets Van Impes

Thursday, July 24, 2014
Local minister, and author, Chris Shelton, as he met the Van Impes at their ministry headquarters.(courtesy photo)

Local minister and author Chris Shelton recently returned from a visit with Drs. Jack and Rexella Van Impe at their worldwide ministry headquarters in Troy, Mich.

Dr. Jack Van Impe is sometimes referred to as the "Walking Bible" because of his extensive memorization of Bible verses. His wife, Rexella, was born Rexella Mae Shelton on Nov. 29, 1932, in Clarkton, Mo. and was named after her father, Rex Shelton.

Van Impe began in ministry playing accordion duets with his missionary father across Michigan and other states. In 1952, he graduated from the Detroit Bible Institute and began his career as a preacher and evangelist as well and also ministering with Billy Graham crusades. While ministering at a Youth For Christ rally, Van Impe met Rexella, who was an organist with the crusades. The couple was married on Aug. 21, 1954, and started their own joint ministry.

It has been estimated that between 1948 and 1980, more than 10 million people attended the Van Impe crusades and over 500,000 made professions of faith in Christ. And, since the beginning of their prime time television specials in 1976, additional millions have been reached with the Gospel message. Up until the time they discontinued their crusades, Van Impe had preached to more people than any other person except Billy Graham.

Shelton, of Piggott, received the invitation after sending the couple a copy of his book, "It's Okay, You're With My Father" (A Child Abuse Investigator's Call to The Church).

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