Slide 1: Mrs. Jean Dennis
50 Years in Ministry
A life lived for the Lord Slide 2: Mrs. Dennis began with a good Christian Heritage Her father: Dr. D. W. Crankshaw (1887-1977) was a Doctor who served in WWI on the front lines in France & WWII doctoring the Coast Guard boys who battled the German submarines on the Atlantic Coast. He was a brilliant man, a medical specialist in four areas, and studied at the famous Mayo Clinic. Slide 3: It was just before WW II that Dr. Crankshaw wedded Miss Anges Tolson (1917-1997) whose family made up the famous lifesavers of Cape Hatteras Island, NC. Slide 4: And so Jean Wesley Crankshaw, their firstborn, began life under the light of America’s tallest lighthouse. Slide 5: The Loves of Little Jean Crankshaw Her Dad Her Mom Her Dolly Her Dog Her Brother ? Slide 6: With the Army, the family moved… The family would finally number six Eventually Dr. Crankshaw mustered out as a Lt. Colonel and settled down in a small town without a doctor - Lake Placid, Florida Slide 7: She attended Lake Placid High School. Then at the age of 17, in a youth camp at Avon Park, Florida in which Charles Weigle participated, Jean Crankshaw accepted Christ as her Saviour. Slide 8: She attended Bob Jones University. In the fall of 1956 she was introduced to a graduate student named Russell Dennis from Indiana – A Yankee ! Slide 9: The North won again! They were married on December 28, 1957. Slide 10: Two Weeks later, Rev. & Mrs. Dennis began the duties of pastor & wife of Brailey Union Church in a small farming community 30 miles from Toledo, Ohio 1958 - 1960 Parsonage A son was born, Russell Dennis, Jr. (1959) Slide 11: In 1960, they were invited to return to Bob Jones University to complete degrees and teach (1960 – 1966). Redbluff Baptist Church 1961 - 1963 Berean Baptist Church 1964 - 1966 During those years, Rev. Dennis pastored a church south of Augusta, GA, and later founded a new work in Athens, GA. Slide 12: During the summers they Directed Dr. Ford Porter’s Camp Berean (1963-1967). Slide 13: The Degrees were completed & the family grew. Ph.D. 1966 B.S. 1964 Daniel Dennis, 1966 Slide 14: After Graduation, Dr. Dennis was asked by his pastor, Ford Porter, to return, be his assistant, and take over his ministry. Slide 15: In 1968, they were called to the Meadowbrook Baptist Church in Sandusky, OH. From a handful that first cold Sunday the church grew, built, and reached a high attendance of 900. Slide 16: During the next 11 years, Mrs. Dennis took part in the formation of many ministries : The Deaf Ministry Heritage Christian School (1971) The first Independent Baptist School in Ohio – it grew to 300+ students The Original Heritage College (1972) Slide 17: In 1979, Dr. Dennis went full time as President of Heritage and in time the school acquired its own property in NE Ohio. Student Jim Pranger – Now a missionary to Russia Slide 18: In 1985, the Indiana Baptist College trustees asked Heritage Baptist University to merge with them and assume their $500,000+ debt. Because of the heavy indebtedness, the Dennis’ did not take a salary for 12 years, but they remained cheerful. Slide 19: Her 25 year reign as “first lady” at Heritage ended at the passing of Dr. Russell Dennis on June 6, 1998…but she continued to serve the Lord at Heritage Teaching students & in music Coordinating the décor of all the new buildings & remodels, but her specialty was… Slide 20: Landscaping with Flowerbeds From a few empty beds in 1985, she developed 24 different flowerbeds, some 60 feet in length! Slide 21: In her extensive travels she has been a good-will ambassador for Heritage. Slide 22: And she is a speaker that motivates ladies ! Slide 23: She has been a generous patron of Heritage. She personally bought the massive pillars on the Administration Building. From the groundbreaking to its near completion, she gave and raised funds for the announced Russell Dennis, Sr. Student Center. Slide 24: Through the great times or the difficult days, she has always fulfilled her role as wife and mother… Slide 25: …and grandmother Slide 26: For your faithfulness in 50 years of service, and faithfulness in your family, we Honor you! Congratulations!