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Forsberg, Malcolm (1908-1991) | Archival Collections at Wheaton College

Name: Forsberg, Malcolm (1908-1991)


Historical Note: Dr. Malcolm Iver Forsberg Sr. was born December 14, 1908 in Tacoma, Washington to Victor and Hannah (Bjur) Forsberg (both born in Sweden). He was the eighth child of Swedish immigrant parents. His father died when he was 8 years old. Early religious training under his uncle’s direction took him to Pentecostal, Methodist, Swedish Covenant, and Presbyterian churches.  He came to faith as a young person a joined a growing group at First Presbyterian of Tacoma, led by Dr. John Mitchell of Multnomah School of the Bible. He attended Lincoln High School in Tacoma and graduated from Wheaton College in 1932 with a Ph.B. (Bachelor of Philosophy) degree in Literature and an honorary Litt.D. in 1960. He was a Record newspaper reporter, managing editor, and editor; student council treasurer; junior and senior class representative; Beltionian director, corresponding secretary; president of Illinois College Press Association. He spent most of his life doing mission work in Africa with the Sudan Interior Mission, first sailing for Ethiopia in 1933, then for 25 years in Anglo-Egyptian Sudan (both inland and at the capital, Khartoum), doing evangelism, church planting, teaching, and administration work. In 1935 he was married to his college sweetheart Enid Miller ’33 from Milwaukee, WI after a four year engagement.  They were married on March 14, 1935 and had three of their four children in Africa. Following expulsion from Ethiopia in 1938 by Mussolini’s conquest during the Italian war, he pioneered mission work among the primitive Uduk tribe in remote Sudan. He learned four African languages and was field superintendent since 1948 and guided the mission through the complications of the Missionary Society Act. He also spent ten years in the Unites States (1964-74) as candidate secretary for SIM, recruiting and orienting new workers. He was a member and elder at College Church of Wheaton during this time. During his lifetime he wrote four books: “Land Beyond the Nile,” “Dry Season,” “Last Days on the Nile,” and “In Famine He Shall Redeem Thee.” His last trip to Africa was to teach Bible in the Uduk language in 1980. The Forsberg’s retired to Carlsbad, CA (near San Diego) after serving 30 years in Africa and 15 years in Wheaton, IL. He became a member of Carlsbad Community Church. He died March 13, 1991 at Rancho Encinitas and was survived by his wife, Enid Miller ’33 (d. 6/6/2007); two sons, Leigh and James (Malcolm, Jr. preceded him in death); a daughter, Dorothy; and five grandchildren. He was 82.
Sources: Student File (Forsberg, Malcolm Iver)






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