John Engels: We’ve Lost a Barnabas (08-19-90)

by Steve Hale

One of my goals immediately after moving here was to meet the families of the congregation in their own homes. Being a newcomer myself, I needed someone to show me tire way to all of these homes.

My Barnabas was John Engles. He cheerfully and methodically took me to every home he could during the day. Everyone knew him, respected him, and loved him.

Brother John loved the church here deeply. Almost all of our conversations centered on needs of the congregation, and plans for her future. He was always quick to be as positive as honestly possible, and never hesitated to call attention to something that concerned him.

Brother John was a delightful man, a joy to be around. I can still hear his hearty laugh, while tilting his head to the side and clasping his hands together. I always looked forward to seeing him.

Luke said Joseph was surnamed by the apostles Bamabas, which means son of exhortation ( Acts 4:36). John Engles was just that for all of us here. We already miss him. But, he has gone to a far better place, with no need for nitroglycerin pills, heart medicine, or a C.C.U. ( Revelation 21:3, 4). While none of us are perfect, brother John’s faithfulness has given all of us a wonderful pattern to follow ( 1 Corinthians 11:1).

The morning of his death, I told Larry I’d gladly drive back and help with the funeral from Missouri. In essence., he said his Dad would want me to go on and preach the gospel. How typical and symbolic this

unselfish attitude is of John Engles. As with Abel, his- loyalty, though he is dead, “…yet speaketh” ( Hebrews 11:4).