I just want to say, for a man, the eldest of 9 brothers and 3 sisters born on a farm in North Georgia who had to quit school in the 3rd grade to work on the farm, my daddy did well. He was born Jan 14, 1903, Frank Benjamin Darnell. He was named after Frank James and Benjamin Franklin. In his later years he changed his name to Benjamin Frank (then he added: Thomas Jefferson Edison Roosevelt) Darnell.
(That handsome man behind Dad is Sherry’s dad Wiley)
He was self educated for the first few years (taught school lessons in the evening by his younger sisters who continued school). He, on his own hook, attended Bible Schools as his time and jobs permitted. He applied for license to preach and was awarded Ordained credentials in two organizations. Daddy became a super pastor. All members of his congregations were considered the same. No big U and little U’s. The Organization he settled with was the Church of God, Headquarters, Cleveland, TN.
Something about dad was inspiring. Every church he pastored doubled in size and a couple tripled. He had a pastor’s heart. No hour was too late for one of his parishioners to call him. I lived with him. NEVER did I hear him complain about members demands on his life.
(In retirement he was proud of the yard decorations that my brother BF Jr. made)
He had several personal philosophies that he lived by, I wish I could. These are the ones I remember:
1. You aren’t too tall, if you have to pull someone else down.
2. a lot can be accomplished, if you do not care who gets the credit.
3. Church member’s time is valuable, they work hard and need their rest. Start on time and end timely, according to the leading of the spirit.
4. Every child will grow up to be somebody, they will not remain immature, do not hurt them!
(He did like a hat)
Daddy lived to see the automobile, airplane,and space travel. But to dad, his car was his working tool. He kept it gassed, clean, and the oil changed. It was available to take his parishioners to the hospital, bring them to church or follow a hearse with their loved ones in it. I never knew him to insult or hurt a member of his church. He was not too good to cut the grass or clean the church, or fix anything that broke that he could. It was His church and His people and God help anyone who messed with either.
(His favorite place in the world, the pulpit)
His accomplishments cannot be numbered.
(He was full of life,fishing in our front yard with no water! With my mama cheering him on to catch something in the sand!)
I miss you dad, you were the greatest. I would give anything if I had been half the man you were.
It was said of Jesus, ‘Never a man spake like that!” Dad was that kind of man, folks hung on his every word.
And to show how honest I am, Shirl was his favorite off spring. (ouch, that hurt!)