Dr. Howard Foltz, who, along with his wife, Pat, founded Accelerating International Missions Strategies in 1985 and who co-founded the original World Teen Challenge in Dallas in 1963, died October 31 at age 82 of a non-COVID-related illness.
Foltz, a devoted and faith follower of Christ for 62 years, developed a great passion to see the Great Commission become the Great Completion. He was a sought-after speaker who traveled to over 100 countries to bring a challenging message of missions and the love of Jesus to pastors and leaders.
The Foltzs founded AIMS with the purpose of challenging and mobilizing churches to take the gospel where it has never been proclaimed. AIMS has trained over 170,000 pastors and leaders worldwide to engage in a cross-cultural ministry and church-planting movements among the world's least-reached people groups, while thousands of churches have been planted by indigenous partners.
Foltz' life and kingdom mission touched the lives of the multitudes.
"Dr. Foltz never failed to inspire and provoke me to think more strategically," says Gordon Robertson, CEO of the Christian Broadcasting Network. "He recoiled against a 'mission status quo' in order to tirelessly fight for the unsaved who haven't heard."
In 1969, at the invitation of the Assemblies of God denomination, Pat and his two sons, Stan and Steve, moved to the Netherlands where the first Teen Challenge coffeehouse was started. The coffeehouse ministry and residential rehabilitation facility laid the groundwork for Teen Challenge in Europe, the Middle East and Southern Asia.
His love for the mission field would eventually bring him to Regent University in 1985, where he became professor of global evangelization and taught on masters and doctoral levels for 20 years. Many students today credit him for the zeal they have in their own lives for reaching the lost and unreached groups of the world.
Although his family, ministry co-workers, former students and friends will miss him, Foltz's passion for the unreached, his leadership skills and the principles and practices he taught and lived by will inspire, motivate and have an eternal ripple effect throughout the kingdom.
"I got to know Howard Foltz when I was a young journalist and admired his life and AIMS, which will carry on his legacy," says Charisma Media Founder and CEO Stephen Strang. "In my opinion, he was a general of the faith. We need more leaders with a heart for missions like him."
"Your heart for missions inspired me in a big way. Thank you for sowing a seed in my life," says Mark Cowart, lead pastor at Church for All Nations in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
Foltz authored four books on missions mobilization, including his last one, Power Shifts: 5 Forgotten Strategies For Expanding God's Kingdom, in 2019.
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