Now at Home: Jack Yocum (1)

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Jack B. Yocum, 1936-2005

A Unique Servant of Christ

I esteem it a great honor and privilege to record my memories of our dear brother Jack Yocum. He went home to be with the Lord on September 7, 2005, after a lengthy illness.

My first introduction to brother Jack was when he came into the Broadview assembly April 7, 1962. During his early years at Broadview, Jack was a tremendous help in all the activities of the assembly, especially the children’s work.

Jack was the example of a true deacon. There was no problem or work too small or large for him to tackle. Even as I look around the hall, I see his artistic touch with his gold painting, letters, and texts. This same touch became very evident in the number of sparkling charts he and his dear wife Lilian were to make later during his full-time service.

Subsequently, Jack’s interest and care for the saints was recognized by the elders and he was asked to share in this work.

Brother Jack had a gift in presenting the gospel and a great desire that others should hear about his Savior. For some years he had been exercised about going into the work of the Lord in the city of Toronto. He made this matter known to his fellow elders in August 1978. After much exercise of heart and careful interviewing by the elders, the Broadview assembly commended him to full-time service, November 25, 1978.

Jack’s conversion after an open-air meeting was no doubt the stimulus for this great area of work. Many street people were helped by Jack’s godly advice and generosity. Who can forget the large open-air at Nathan Phillips Square in 1979? Jack was unique in his methods. I still remember the meeting he arranged for the assembly Sunday Schools at the Toronto Teachers College. I believe we called it “Sunday School Rally Day.” Besides door-to-door visitation and arranging meetings in shopping malls, Jack had a tent erected for a couple of years in a bad crime area. He had young men give their testimonies and he would close with a short gospel message.

Jack used his brightly illustrated charts extensively. Whether for a week’s series or shorter, he was able to expound prophetic truths, give a good gospel application, or have a word of comfort and encouragement for the Lord’s people.

In the latter years when Jack ceased to be active in his Yonge Street open-air meetings, he turned his attention indoors and began cottage meetings in homes and apartments. The people were mostly Muslims and were extremely fearful of being identified, should they decide to become a Christian. Jack honored their wishes and worked alone. He saw a number profess but none baptized. Jack kept himself busy in his Master’s service in his own unique way.

Jack’s large funeral service was taken by Fred Krauss with a faithful gospel message. Tender memories were shared by Douglas Booth. Now Jack’s work is done. Eternity alone will reveal all that has been done for the Master by this humble servant.

“Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord…Their works do follow them” (Rev 14:13).