John Richard Martin

John Richard Martin, 92, of Harrisonburg, Va., died March 23, 2021, at Virginia Mennonite Retirement Community. He was born Sept. 2, 1928, to Perry S. and Annie Wenger Martin in Harrisonburg. 


On March 31, 1956, he married Marian Stover Landis of Blooming Glen, Pa. She preceded him in death in 2016. In 2018, he married Evelyn Jost Martin.

He earned degrees from Eastern Mennonite College, Goshen Biblical Seminary, Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary and Lancaster Theological Seminary.

In 1957, he was ordained to the ministry at Woodridge Mennonite Church, Washington, D.C. He pastored there three years along with serving as associate executive secretary of the National Service Board for Religious Objectors. He later pastored Neffsville Mennonite Church in Pennsylvania for 10 years. Then he served on the faculty of Eastern Mennonite College and Seminary. He taught college Bible for seven years and then served as seminary registrar and professor of church ministries for 18 years. During his years of ministry, he served on a number of denominational boards and programs, including director of 1-W Services, moderator of Virginia Mennonite Conference, president of Mennonite Board of Congregational Ministries and president of Mennonite Broadcasts. 

He authored four books as well as articles for various periodicals. 

Survivors include his wife, Evelyn Jost Martin; three children, Don R. (Barbara) Martin of Harrisonburg, Lee (Peg) Martin of Kimball, W.Va., and Ann (Jim Stutzman) Martin of Lancaster, Pa.; and seven grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his eight siblings, Robert, J. Weldon, Mary King, Virginia Derstine, Ruth Harnish, Margaret Weaver, Perry Sanford, and Ralph.

Memorial services were livestreamed from Park View Mennonite Church, Harrisonburg. The burial was private. Memorial contributions may be made to the John R. and Marian S. Martin Seminary Scholarship at Eastern Mennonite Seminary or the Compassion Fund at Virginia Mennonite Retirement Community. 

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