January 22, 2014 | 9:19 a.m.
By Tricia Theurer, Communications Specialist
Jay C. Substad, class of 1988 and Bethel's 2013 College of Arts & Sciences Alumnus of the Year, died suddenly on January 17. He was 47.
With the prompting of the Holy Spirit, Substad made a "huge step outside of [his] comfort zone" and with three others, created the Agua Viva ("Living Water") ministry in Honduras. In 2010 Substad began partnering with Bethel University to prepare students to serve on spring missions trips to Honduras, saying "If we make ourselves available, He'll use us."
Matthew Runion, associate campus pastor, says "Jay was an incredible partner in our missions program. His pursuit of Christ and the Kingdom of God was unmistakable and contagious. Through leading annual spring break teams to Honduras, he spread his passion for the gospel of Jesus Christ to many, many Bethel students.
"Preceded in death by his mother Jane, Substad is survived by his wife of 26 years Susie '88 (Mathis) and their children Allison '13 (fiancée, Grant Mitchell), Bethany (a Bethel junior), Trent, and Burk; father Robert (Gong); siblings Todd (Diane), Keith (Lonna), and Paige; and many nieces and nephews.