Abraham Vereide

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Vereide in 1960

Abraham Vereide (October 7, 1886 - May 16, 1969) was a Norwegian-born Methodist minister and founder of Goodwill Industries of Seattle.[citation needed]

Abraham was born on Vereide Farm in Nordfjord on 7 October 1886. His parents were Anders and Helene Vereide. Helene died when Abraham was eight years old, in 1894. In 1905 Abraham received a ticket to America from a neighbor who was unable to use it. He traveled to Montana and found work starting in 1906 as the leader of a mission center in Great Falls, Montana. He married Mattie Hansen from Denmark in 1910. Abraham also served as a minister in Spokane, Portland, and, starting in 1916, Seattle. During these years he and Mattie had one daughter, Alicia, and three sons, Warren, Milton, and Abraham (Abe). The family moved to Boston, Massachusetts in 1931. On personal invitation from Governor Franklin Roosevelt he attended a conference regarding the social relief program for New York State. In 1935, Vereide founded the prayer breakfast movement in the United States. In 1942 he founded the International Christian Leadership (ICL) group together with Marian Johnsen, incorporated as Fellowship Foundation, in Chicago as the U.S. headquarters for the prayer breakfast movement. He was the executive director of this organization until his death. He was part of a peace conference in San Francisco after World War II. He visited Norway in 1946/47 on a tour to gain members to ICL in Europe. In 1953, Vereide started the Presidential Prayer Breakfast, later called the National Prayer Breakfast or the International Prayer Breakfast. He visited Norway once more in 1960. He was editor for "The Christian Citizen" together with captain Leonard Larsen. Abraham died in May 1969 and his wife died later that same year.[1][2][3][4][5][6][7]


  1. ^ Billy Graham Center, International Christian Leadership Archives-Dr. Abraham Vereide- Box 468
  2. ^ Hottel, Clarence W. , From Bethlehem to Baltimore (2001) page 155
  3. ^ Harris, Irving The Willowbank Story, Island Press Ltd. (1979) page 9
  4. ^ "'Family': Fundamentalism, Friends In High Places". NPR. July 1, 2009. Retrieved 2013-04-18.
  5. ^ Sharlet, Jeff (2008). The Family: Power, Politics and Fundamentalism's Shadow Elite. University of Queensland Press. ISBN 0-7022-3694-2.
  6. ^ Sharlet, Jeff (2008). The Family: The Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power. HarperCollins. p. 87. ISBN 978-0-06-056005-8. The man is a Norwegian immigrant named Abraham Vereide, known to most as Abram, a preacher who has found in America the stature and respectability—by way of a prestigious pulpit—that eluded him in his native Norway.
  7. ^ Bjorno, Ulf Uri (1980). Norsk-Amerikansk Pastoral Symfoni: Et memorandum i anledning 75 aors jubileet for Abraham Vereide's utvandring til Amerika i 1905. Stavanger, Norway: The Cleng Peerson Memorial Institute.