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The death of a dear friend

Dr. Jim Denison is a cultural apologist who helps people respond biblically and redemptively to the vital issues of our day. He is also the co-founder and Chief Vision Officer of the Denison Forum, a Dallas-based nonprofit that comments on current issues through a biblical lens.

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Brian and Debi Newman (Courtesy of the Newman family)

Brian Newman, his wife Debi and their two children (Courtesty of the Newman family) Dr. Brian Newman joined the staff of Park Cities Baptist Church not long after I became senior pastor and has been an instrumental member of the ministry team ever since.  Last Saturday morning, his wife found him on the floor in their home.  He was rushed to the hospital, where doctors found a severe “bleed” in the interior of his brain.  He died Monday morning at the age of 51, leaving his wife and two children.

Brian was one of the godliest servants I’ve ever known.  His compassion for hurting souls was obvious to anyone who knew him.  He was an extremely effective marriage and family counselor, education minister, and disciple-maker.  One of my strongest memories of Brian relates to the Men’s Bible Study I taught at Park Cities early on Thursday mornings.  Brian always brought breakfast for the men, getting up at 5 AM so he could go to a particular donut shop where he had developed a friendship with a non-Christian working there.

He was a passionate lover of God, deeply invested in spiritual discipline and thoughtful spirituality.  Brian also invested deeply in the lives entrusted to his ministry—it’s remarkable how many are saying this week, “He was my best friend.”  His grace was unconditional, his friendship absolute.

Brian’s memorial service is July 26 at 2 PM.  Please join me in praying for his family and all of us who miss him so much.  Our gratitude echoes Jesus’ affirmation for his devoted disciple: “Well done, good and faithful servant!”