In Memoriam: Harold S. Martin

August 7, 1930 – January 5, 2024

Ephrata, Pennsylvania

Harold S. Martin died, peacefully, Friday, January 5, 2024, at the Lincoln Christian Home, Ephrata. He was born in Ephrata, on August 7, 1930 to the late Noah and Helen (Sheaffer) Martin.  At the age of twelve, Harold accepted Christ as his Savior and later was called to be a minister of the Gospel, serving at the Pleasant Hill Church of the Brethren for sixty-two years.

Harold conducted Bible teaching sessions and revival meetings in several hundred congregations located in forty -three states and in numerous foreign countries.

Harold married Priscilla Miller on August 31, 1950. They were married for nearly seventy years when she passed away in June, 2020.

After teaching junior high school mathematics at Spring Grove, for twenty-six years, Harold took an early retirement to be able to devote more time to preaching and writing Bible commentaries. Over the years, he also wrote many articles for Bible Helps and publications.

He was one of the last surviving members of the prayer meeting held at the Ocean Grove Church of the Brethren Annual Conference in 1959 where Brethren Revival Fellowship (BRF) was started. He was first published in the 1950s with the booklet, What Happened to the Church of the Brethren?

He was the first editor of the BRF Witness  for  50 years. He wrote and edited the 18-volume Brethren New Testament Commentary, as well as commentaries on a book in each of the Old Testament genres. He wrote books on the New Testament Doctrines and Practices, major Bible doctrines, a complete survey of the Bible, and a guidebook for young men.

He traveled to 50 countries and all 50 United States, and preached around the world, in over one fourth of Church of the Brethren congregations, in each of the major denominations of the Schwarzenau Brethren, and in other churches as well. He wrote Sunday School lessons for Brethren Press, and did radio commentary for the International Sunday School lessons. Through the Bible Helps ministry, he was the most widely published and read Brethren author in history. He taught for over 30 years at the annual Brethren Bible Institute, and served as its first principal.

Brother Martin was elected to and served in the plural non salaried ministry for decades at the Pleasant Hill Church of the Brethren (now Pleasant Hill Brethren Church), near Spring Grove, Pennsylvania. He served on the Church of the Brethren Annual Conference Standing Committee and on the General Board of the Church of the Brethren.

Surviving are three sons: Stephen, husband of Martha (Minnich) Martin, Lititz, Stanley, husband of Fannie Sue (Kegerreis) Martin, Lebanon, Sherwood, husband of Sandra (Nell) Martin, Hanover, two daughters, Christine, wife of Dale Newcomer, Bowdoin, ME; Delphine, wife of Wesley Ramer, Gleason, WI, twenty-four grandchildren and thirty-nine great-grandchildren, and two sisters: Janice Martin, Lancaster, Jean, wife of Ralph Deckard, Lititz.

Preceding him in death in addition to his parents and wife, are his youngest daughter-Berdene Walmer; three grandchildren: Rachel Martin, Lynette Martin, and Samuel Walmer and two sisters, Esther Martin and Elva Kaucher;
Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to attend Harold’s Funeral Service at the White Oak Church, 1211 North Penryn Road, Manheim, on Saturday, January 13, 2024 at 10:30 AM. There will be a viewing at the White Oak Church on Friday evening from 6:30 PM to 8:00 PM with additional viewing at the church on Saturday morning from 9:00 AM until the time of the service.  Private burial for the family will be at the Pleasant Hill Cemetery, Spring Grove. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be sent to Bible Helps, P.O. Box 391, Hanover, PA 17331.