One of my "heroes" in life celebrates his 86th birthday today!
Bishop Raymond M Pruitt, one of those gentle giants of the Pentecostal tradition and a lifetime hero of mine, turned 86 today.
I first met Raymond Pruitt when I was just a snotty-nosed teenager in the West Huntsville (AL) Church many years ago. At the time, he was a professor at Tomlinson College in Cleveland, TN. He is a prolific author, an extremely capable administrator--having served as overseer in Nebraska, Hawaii, Kansas, England, Canada, and elsewhere. His son Jim, and daughter-in-law, Mary Grace, were members of the West Huntsville congregation. Thus, I got to know, love and adore the Pruitt family. I loved them then, and now more than thirty years later, I still love them.
Bishop Pruitt and his wonderful wife Aleda began their ministry many years ago right here in Chicago. Few people have encouraged me over the last 3+ decades the way that Raymond Pruitt has encouraged me. Whether I was in the military, in seminary, or just living "life", this humble and godly man has always had a "timely" word of love and appreciation for me. There have been times when I just felt like calling he and Sister Pruitt to let them know how much they have meant to me over the years. I'm glad that I did. Both of them are such treasures in my life.
I could say so much about Raymond M. Pruitt. Right now, all I want to say is