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Obituary: Peter Wheeler (1928–2021)

October 2021 | by Evangelical Times

Born to Christian parents in Essex, Peter came to faith at an early age. He felt called to ministry and studied at Matlock Bible College and at the University of London.

Aged 23, Peter left England to serve the Lord in France. It was a step of faith: he disembarked at Le Havre with just his bicycle and the address of a local Christian contact.

Nevertheless, Peter (‘Pierre’ as he was known thereafter) ended up working with a group called French Village Workers on a tent evangelism campaign. Later, Pierre settled in Hazebrouck.

In 1954, a lady called Jeane arrived in France with a UK evangelism team. She got to know Pierre, and the couple were married two years later. They moved to Dunkirk/Petite-Synthe to be mentored by a French couple and learn more about church planting in France.

In 1966, Pierre moved to Arras in the Pas-de-Calais region along with Jeane and their four children. Their home became a meeting and evangelism room during the years before more suitable premises were finally obtained in 2003. Nevertheless, after frequent leafletting, children’s outreach, and the use of a public ‘Bible exhibition’, the Eglise Protestante Evangélique d’Arras started in the 1970s.

Pierre handed the pastorate at Arras over to David Sutherland in 1999 (who in turn handed the ministry over to native Frenchmen in 2013). Pierre continued to author books and speak at conferences.

He suffered a stroke in April this year, and was promoted to glory on 26 July, aged 93. He is survived by his widow Jeane, five children, 14 grandchildren, and 12 great-grandchildren.

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