Remembering Pastor Burt Griffeth
To the Editor:
So long, Pastor Griffeth.
It was very sad news to hear that our friend, our mentor, Pastor Burt Griffeth, 86, met His Maker God, the evening of May 15, 2010 in North Carolina where he and his wife have resided in retirement for the last several years. Pastor Griffeth was a former interim pastor at the West Bethel Union Church, and the founder of Pleasant Valley Bible Church in West Bethel back in the ‘80s.
Burt was not always a Christian, and did not always value the Christian Church. He was an avid golfer, and one day on the golf course, Burt asked a Baptist minister how to become a Christian. The minister shared the plan to salvation with Burt, how that everyone is a sinner and bound for hell. He heard how Jesus died on the cross to provide a way to have his sins forgiven and washed away by the “shed blood of Jesus Christ.” Burt made the decision to accept Jesus Christ as his personal Saviour and Lord, becoming a Christian — a new person in Christ. 2 Corinthians 5:17.
Burt continued to work on the railroad, but enrolled in Correspondence School, through Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, to learn more about what the Bible taught. Pastor Burt became active in churches in the South Paris area, and did some speaking in the area churches. He found such joy and peace in his Saviour, that he wanted to share this with everyone. That is why he founded Pleasant Valley Bible Church, as a way to reach out to those who needed Jesus.
Burt and his wife, Marion, lived for several years in Oxford, Maine, before he retired from his job on the railroad, and eventually resigned from the church they had founded in West Bethel.
Burt wanted to show his love for his Saviour, and became a “door knocking soul winner.” He had an insatiable burden for others to know his Saviour; the Saviour that had made such a change in his own life and the life of his family. He never had a problem that his God did not have an answer for, and that answer was found in God’s Book, the Holy Bible.
Pastor Burt, also was a man of prayer. In retirement he and his wife took over the interim pastorate of the Community Baptist Church in Glen, N.H. Burt spoke much on prayer in his messages.
In the last several years Pastor Burt has battled with heart issues and cancer, which ultimately took his life a few short days ago.
To the very end of his life, Burt visited in the hospitals to be a comfort to folks and he would share his love for his Saviour. Pastor Burt cared for and loved working with and helping people.
The hymn writer, Rufus H. McDaniels penned these words of Christian testimony. “What a wonderful change in my life has been wrought, Since Jesus came into my heart! I have light in my soul for which long I have sought, Since Jesus came into my heart!”
This is the first part of a hymn, sharing the words of transformation that takes place as a person places their faith and trust in Christ.
So long Pastor Burt. See you in Heaven by faith alone in Jesus Christ.
John D. Holliday