John Clinton Briggs
A Man of Healing and Faith
Rev. John Clinton Briggs of Asheville, NC, passed away July 4, 2018 at Mission Memorial Hospital in Asheville at the age of 90.
John was born in Sparta, New Jersey; on October 31, 1927, the son of the late Rev. Harry Irwin Briggs and the late Amanda Myrtie Crabtree Briggs.
John Briggs served in the United States Army during WWII, where he honored his country by playing trombone in the US Army Band.
John earned his B.S. degree in math and broadcast engineering at the University of South Dakota in 1953. Following graduation, he was a professor of radio electronics at the University of South Dakota. He built the radio station KYNT in Yankton, South Dakota, and served as its chief engineer and program director and even gave Tom Brokaw his first job.
His musical gift and his beautiful singing voice continued as he traveled and performed with his family, the “Briggs Family Singers” over a five-state area.
He served as Director of Development and Vice President for Development at Crown College, the mid-west regional college of the Christian and Missionary Alliance, located near Minneapolis, Minnesota from the summer of 1973 to the summer of 1982. He also served as Director of Development at Toccoa Falls Bible College.
On August 10, 1984 John married Barbara Baron Fenlason and they established a worldwide ministry together.
John had several hobbies that he enjoyed throughout his life. Among these are fishing and hiking with his children and grandchildren. He was an avid photographer and enjoyed gardening, woodworking, playing trombone and singing.
Rev. Briggs was loving and compassionate, and a prayer warrior, wanting to use the power of prayer to enrich and heal those around him. Along with his wife, Barbara, he traveled in ministry to over 12 countries, throughout Europe, Asia, and Indonesia, including Poland, Tibet, Haiti, China, and Israel. He and Barbara worked together to hold the first countrywide National Day of Prayer and prayer breakfast in Haiti. Together they founded and operated Restoration Ministries International out of Fort Mill, SC. They were members of Morning Star Church in Fort Mill, SC.
In addition to his parents, John is preceded in death by two of his sisters, Laura Brink and Mildred Lufburrow, daughter in law Coleen Briggs and stepson, Michael Richard Smith.
Survivors include his wife of 32 years, Barbara Fenlason Briggs of Asheville, NC; sister, Mary Austin of Ohio; children, Rev. Dale Briggs and his wife, Rebecca, of Bristolville, OH, Diane Sorenson and her husband, Victor, of Maple Lake, MN, Dawn Sweeney and her husband, Doug, of Excelsior, MN, and David Briggs of Shakopee, MN; step-children, Rev. David Smith and his wife, Kathy, of Kettering, OH, Brenda Baron Smith of Waynesville, NC, and Jonathan Robert Smith of Huntersville, NC; 12 grandchildren; 13 great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.
A celebration of life service will be held on Monday, July 16, 2018 at New Covenant Church, 767 Lee Road, Clyde, NC 28721. Service to commence at 3:00 p.m. Friends and family will be received beginning at 2:00 p.m.
John and his wife Barbara have a history with New Covenant Church and would appreciate any donations made in John's memory be designated to New Covenant Church 767 Lee Road, Clyde NC 28721.
Crawford/Ray Funeral Home and Cremation Service is honored to be caring for the Briggs Family, and words of comfort may be shared at www.CrawfordRay.com