Danny Morris: A long, fruitful, and faithful service to God


Danny E. Morris was 17 years old when he answered the call to ministry. You could say it was in the blood. His grandfather was a circuit-riding Methodist minister in North Florida and dedicated the then-infant Danny to God's service.

Rev. Danny E. Morris

While in seminary at the Candler School of Theology at Emory University in Atlanta, he met Rosalie Bankhead Green. They married in 1956.

While a student pastor, Danny served a circuit of three churches in North Florida. He later served as an associate pastor at Trinity United Methodist Church in Tallahassee, just the beginning of a long, fruitful, and faithful service to God and the Florida Conference of the United Methodist Church.

Danny transitioned to his new journey on January 1, passing into the arms of Jesus. It was a fitting day to start eternal life anew.

He served for 22 as a UM clergy and in 1973 joined the staff of the General Board of Discipleship in Nashville, where he served as the Director of Small Group Ministries. After three years, he joined The Upper Room Ministries staff, where he served for 23 years.

The ripples of his many contributions will continue for decades.

He planted a new congregation at John Wesley United Methodist Church in Tallahassee and was pastor of Hialeah United Methodist Church, a bilingual congregation in downtown Hialeah.

Danny and Sam Teague, a layperson in his congregation, developed the "Ten Brave Christians" program while a pastor at John Wesley UMC. That program, begun in 1965, continues affecting lives today.

He turned that experience into a book entitled "A Life that Really Matters." It has been translated and published into seven languages and is currently in its fifth edition.

It was one of 21 books Danny wrote, and he also maintained a website on spirituality and humor for many years.

He established the Upper Room Division of Developing Ministries and served as Director for 16 years. It developed and managed more than 40 programs and resources.

He originated the two-year Academy for Spiritual Formation and the Five-Day Academy, both national and international programs for spiritual study and formation.

Other programs of Danny's that had substantial impact included The Healing Ministry, The Living Prayer Center, and The Walk to Emmaus.

Danny is survived by Rosalie and three children: Alan (Beth) Morris of Murfreesboro, Tennessee; David Morris of Ventura, California; Diana Haines (Patrick) of Lebanon, Tennessee.

He had nine grandchildren, 11 nephews, and nieces, along with many great nieces and nephews.

He received the prestigious Philip Award from The National Association of United Methodist Evangelists in 1985 for distinguished service in evangelism.

And in 2002, Nancy Pfaff wrote his biography: Light and Fire. If you ever asked Danny how he was doing, his answer would be, "Better than average."

Modest, accomplished, and a true servant leader.

A Celebration of Life is scheduled for Sunday, January 10, for the immediate family. It also will be live-streamed at a time to be determined.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Danny's honor can be made to Wilson County CASA in Lebanon, Tennessee, MTSU Wesley Foundation in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, or Miriam's Promise in Nashville, TN.



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