Ted Bergren had a passion for Briercrest

Posted: March 28, 2012

Theodore (Ted) Bergren loved life and had a passion for Briercrest that lasted until his final days on this earth.

Mr. Bergren passed away March 21 and his life was celebrated at a memorial service in Caronport March 24th.

“We just grew up knowing that Briercrest was his passion,” his son Doug said, explaining that the passion began when his father was saved while listening to Briercrest’s radio ministry.

“This became his passion... I think he recognized the need to educate young people to go out and do mission work or pastoral work.”

Doug smiles when he thinks of his dad being a well-read but “uneducated farmer” who started volunteering at the school during the winters.

The volunteer quickly became a valued employee because of his keen business sense, but he was also a valued friend and ministry partner for Dr. Henry Hildebrand.

“Mr. Bergren was an incredible partner for Henry Hildebrand in the ministry, one of those early founders who just gave himself wholeheartedly to this work,” President Dwayne Uglem said.

Dr. Hildebrand’s son Paul agrees.

“Mr. Bergren was my father’s best friend and closest confidant,” Paul told those attending the memorial service.

“I could hear the love and respect that dad had for Mr. Bergren as he talked about him in our home and elsewhere to others.  I knew how much his thinking was valued.”

Mr. Bergren began work at Briercrest in 1951 and was selected to be the business manager in 1958. He served in that position until he retired at the age of 63.

He applied his business perspective to the job and implemented many business and management systems at the school. He also used those skills to serve on many area boards and committees, helping the school connect with the outside community.

His business practices provided a strong Christian witness.

“Many times I have heard my father quote Mr. Bergren as saying ‘a deal is only good if both parties were equally well served.’  This is something that has impacted my life,” Paul said.  “He was loved for his personal integrity and because of the credibility and respect that this brought to the institution.”

Even after retiring, Mr. Bergren worked at managing his investments so that he could support others.

“He was profoundly committed to ministry and to supporting missionaries and supporting the development of Christian workers,” Uglem said.

Doug said he will always remember  his father’s wise words about being a financially responsible Christian. 

“Don’t worry about what your needs are but the needs of the ministry and God will take care of you.”

God not only took care of Mr. Bergren, he gave him a positive outlook that carried him through life’s challenges.

“Mr. Bergren was consistently positive and he was an encourager,” Paul said. “I never heard him complain in his conversations with my father or anyone else.”

President Uglem agrees.

“Ted Bergren loved life and any time you were with him you knew he loved life because he was just celebrating and bringing joy to others.”

Theodore “Ted” Bergren.  April 22, 1917 - March 21, 2012