Rev. Wilbur W. Brannon, a retired minister in the Church of the Nazarene. Wilbur was born April 26, 1930 to Rev. George and Eva Brannon in Junction City, KS. At age 6, Wilbur prayed to be a Christian following a message by Dr. J.B. Chapman. Along with his little sister, “Betty Jane”, the family moved to Winchester, IN to pastor a Nazarene church. There they met and became life-long friends of Rev. Fred and Grace Thomas, who were pastoring a Nazarene church in Anderson, IN. There he met their daughter, Grace “Betty”. After another pastorate in Auburn, IN, the Brannons resided in Richmond, IN as George travelled as an evangelist. There, Wilbur met and made a life-ling friend, James A. Adams. At age 15 they dedicated their lives to the Lord and began preaching together. Wilbur also had aspirations to be a concert pianist, and memorized an 88 page concerto to perform with the Richmond HS orchestra. Music and the piano continued to give him joy throughout his life, until hearing loss became too severe. While attending Bethany-Peniel College (now SNU), he served as Student Director of Religious Activities. Responsibilities included Monday evening services, arranging student singers’ or preachers’ visits to district churches and the introduction of two prayer rooms for boys and girls at the rear of the campus church. After graduating with a Bachelor of Theology in 1952, Wilbur was one of 15 ordained ministers. Having wed his childhood friend “Betty” Thomas on Aug.7, 1951, Wilbur continued to travel as an evangelist. Their son Paul was born in 1956. The family had the opportunity to pastor a church in Seminole, OK in 1961, then Hot Springs, AR 1962-69, then Orlando, FL 1969-75, Lansing, MI 1975-76, Point Loma, CA 1976-77, and Sacramento, CA 1977-81. For the next 19 years he served as Director of Pastoral Ministries for the Church of the Nazarene in Kansas City. There he initiated programs such as CoNet, PalCon, held meetings with college presidents, and had social consultations with eight ethnic groups as part of the church organization. During this time he travelled extensively around the world. In 1996 he received an honorary DD from Nazarene Bible College. After retiring from headquarters, he taught at TNU in Nashville from 2001-10.
He is survived by wife Grace, son Paul, sister Elizabeth Betty Jane Messer, and nephews Jim, Greg, and Scott Tillery.
Memorial service to be arranged.