Paul W. Stripling

Paul Wayne Stripling, BA ’58, ThD, died March 4 in Mansfield, TX. He was born Jan. 21, 1936, in Herrin, IL, to Ben and Lucille Stripling. The family moved to East Texas in Paul’s childhood, and he became a Christian at age nine while his father was the pastor at the First Baptist Church, Gladewater, TX. Paul was in ROTC and the marching band at Gladewater High School, where he graduated in 1954. He majored in radio/television and religion at Baylor, where he was junior class president, Honor Council president and a Chamber of Commerce member. He met Roberta Donnell, BA ’60, in 1958 while attending Seventh and James Baptist Church, and they married at First Baptist Church, Midland, TX, in 1960. Paul earned a Bachelor of Divinity, Master of Theology and Doctor of Theology from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth. He also received an honorary doctorate from Dallas Baptist University. Paul’s Texas pastorates included Emmanuel Baptist Church in White Oak, First Baptist Church in Joshua, Baylor Baptist Church in Ennis, First Baptist Church of Golden Acres in Pasadena and Gaston Avenue Baptist Church in Dallas. Paul was executive director of the Waco Regional Baptist Association (WRBA) for 21 years, during which time he cultivated relationships with ministers and congregations in more than 130 Central Texas churches. He was WRBA executive director emeritus following his retirement. He received the Texas Baptist Legacy Award from the Baptist General Convention of Texas in 2017. Paul was a trustee at Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center for 17 years and at various times was an adjunct faculty member at Baylor, the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor and George W. Truett Seminary. He also was director of hand-in-hand ministry at Wilkirson-Hatch-Bailey Funeral Home, providing grief counseling to the bereaved. Paul wrote numerous articles for several publications, including the Sunday School Publishing Board and the Southern Baptist Convention. He authored multiple books, including From Me … To You [Maple Springs Publishing, 1970], based on his daily radio program at KCBI 90.9-FM in Dallas. He penned Turning Points in the History of Baptist Associations in America and contributed to many other publications, including Chicken Soup for the Golden Soul [HCI, 2000]. Paul and Roberta traveled much of the world and led groups to Israel, Italy and Germany. They were also involved in evangelism efforts throughout the United States and Mexico and in Rio de Janeiro, and Paul taught seminary students in St. Petersburg, Russia. He was preceded in death by his parents and Robert’s parents Robert and Marion Donnell. Paul is survived by his wife of 61 years, Roberta; sister Carolyn Stripling Margraves; daughter Paula Jewell, BA ’90, and her husband Kirk; and daughter Mary Nelson, BA ’93, PhD, and her husband Alan, BFA ’94. He is also survived by two sets of twin grandsons: Tucker and Tyler Voyles and Blake and Paul Nelson.