Funeral Service Wednesday for Don Peres

Post a Comment » Written on December 31st, 2007     
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LOWRY, MN (December 31, 2007) – A funeral service for Evangelical Covenant Church pastor Donald Peres, 67, will be conducted at 2 p.m. Wednesday at the Evangelical Covenant Church in Alexandria, Minnesota. Visitation will be observed prior to the service, beginning at noon.

Peres, whose remarkable return to ministry following a stroke in 1999 was chronicled in The Covenant Companion, died Saturday. He had been serving as pastor at Ben Wade Covenant Church in Lowry since August.

Peres was born June 30, 1940, in Iola, Kansas. He attended Southwest Baptist College and was ordained into the Southern Baptist Convention in 1960 and subsequently served two congregations.

He married Patricia (Patty) Kenison on July 2, 1961.

In 1979, he was ordained in the Covenant. Peres served the Evangelical Covenant Church in Savonburg, Kansas; the Evangelical Covenant Church in Thief River Falls, Minnesota; and Lakeview Covenant Church in Duluth, Minnesota.

Peres hosted a radio program for eight years in Kansas, wrote a newspaper column for eight years in Thief River Falls and televised the broadcast of his church services in Duluth for several years. He also lead evangelistic meetings five times each year, traveling throughout Kansas, Nebraska, Colorado, Missouri, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota, Manitoba, Alberta and Ontario, Canada.

He suffered a stroke in June 1999. During his recovery, he served as interim pastor at several churches in the Duluth area, something that at one time seemed impossible.

Peres’ doctor had told Patty that her husband would never again be able to communicate or navigate stairs following the stroke. Three years later, an article in the April 2002 issue of The Covenant Companion highlighted the pastor’s arduous journey back to the pulpit.

Despite the poor prognosis, Peres underwent months of intensive speech therapy. At times, he had four one-hour sessions each day, five days a week.

According to the article, “Don came home from the hospital on July 12, 1999. He sat at the kitchen table with his Bible, knowing that he could not read it, and that even if someone else were to read it to him, he would not be able to comprehend the words. When he saw a pencil and paper lying on the table, he felt compelled by the Holy Spirit to begin writing out the Bible. He started with John 1:1 – ‘In the beginning was the word …’ ” Over the next 18 months, he completed copying the New Testament.

In addition to Patty, survivors include daughters Julie Johnson of Shoreview, Minnesota, and Leah Ashford of Modesto, California; sons Nathaniel Peres of Atlanta, Georgia; Jonathan Peres of St. Paul, Minnesota, and Benjamin Peres of Statham, Georgia; foster daughter Gloria Hawkinson; and foster son Everett Hoddy; and seven grandchildren.

Arrangements are with Hoplin-Hitchcock Funeral Home in Glenwood, Minnesota. Memorials are suggested to Covenant Enabling Residences of Minnesota, 322 North 60th Avenue West, Duluth, MN, 55807, or FARMS International, Inc., P.O. Box 270, Knife River, MN, 55609.

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