Boyd Nicholson passed into the Lord's presence on Sunday, November
12, 2000 from MacMaster University Hospital. Beloved husband of Bernice
(nee Robertson), loving father of Cathie (Bob) Cretney, J. B. (Louise),
and Bill (Rona, deceased). Cherished grandfather of Lynn (David)
Shatford, John (Janice), Brian (Jackie) Cretney, Joanna (Zachary)
Garner, Beth (Crawford) Paul, Craig, Moira, Heather, Lindsey, Sharon,
Andrea, David, and Sara. Great-grandfather of B. J., Andrew, &
Ethan Nicholson, and Abigail Shatford.
Together we thank the Lord for the godly influence he had in all our lives.
"And thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a
spring of water, whose waters fail not ... thou shalt raise up the
foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called, The repairer
of the breach, the restorer of paths to dwell in" (Isaiah 58:11-12).
"If, when I die, this is all that's placed on my grave:
This man raised up, this man repaired, this man restored,'
my life would have been worth it all." -J. BOYD NICHOLSON
John Boyd Nicholson was born into a Christian home in the town of
Blantyre, Scotland on July 14, 1922. He had one sister, Ella, who died
as a child. Blantyre was also the birthplace of David Livingstone, and
the two men would eventually be linked by their great love for Africa.
When Boyd was still a child, the family moved to Glasgow where he
attended Shawlands, Academy At the age of 17, his grandfather and hero,
(also named John Boyd Nicholson) died. His last words were, "I will
dwell in the house of the Lord forever" (Ps. 23:6). Boyd was deeply
shaken by this event because he realized that were he the one dying, he
would not be able to truthfully say that. This led to a clear
conviction of his need for a Saviour and he placed his trust in the
finished work of Christ, receiving the gift of eternal life in the Lord
During World War 11, he qualified as a pilot in the Royal Air Force,
taking some of his training in Canada. It was during this time that he
met Bernice (nee Robertson) who in 1947 would become his beloved wife.
After being commissioned, he served with tours of duty in India and
Burma. Although trained on bombers, he never dropped a bomb in action.
Instead, in transport command, he dropped supplies (often behind enemy
lines). In a region where the life expectancy of an air crew could be
as short as two weeks, he spent two years, undoubtedly preserved by the
Lord. In spite of the horrors of war, these were days of spiritual
vigor for him and maturing in the things of God.
Following the war, Boyd and his parents moved to Canada. The
longawaited marriage took place and the following year Cathie was born,
followed by J. B. in 1951 and Bill in 1955. During these years they
were in happy fellowship in Queenston Street Gospel Hall and were
active in the Lord's service. Boyd's employment varied in the first few
years after the war (jobs were scarce). But eventually he settled on
printing and commercial art, which he pursued until 1960 when an
attempt was made to move to Africa as servants of God. However, the
Simba Rebellion and War of Independence (in what was then the Belgian
Congo) prevented them from going. Instead, Boyd and Bernice were
commended to the grace of God in North America. Boyd travelled both to
preach the gospel and teach the saints. This has been his true life's
work: to take God's Good News around the world. He travelled
extensively in Asia, Africa, Europe and North America, preaching "the
unsearchable riches of Christ."
Over the years, Boyd was a long-time writer and editor for Christian
periodicals (including Food for the Flock, Counsel and Uplook), and for
many years was a regular speaker on the Family Bible Hour radio
broadcast. He also authored several books. After a month-long illness,
he passed into the Lord's presence on Sunday, November 12, 2000.