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Rodney Ross Romney

Rodney Ross Romney Obituary
Rodney Ross Romney

Rodney Ross Romney, 81, of Idaho Falls, Idaho passed away Saturday, June 30, 2012 at

his home.

Rodney was born January 17, 1931 in Arco, Idaho to Lois Taylor Romney and Daniel Gaskell Romney. He was the third of three sons.

Rod grew up in Arco and moved to Howe in the fourth grade. He returned to Arco and graduated from Butte High School in 1947. He graduated from Linfield College, Berkeley Baptist Divinity School and earned a Doctor of Ministry from the American Baptist Seminary of the West in Berkeley, California.

Rod taught school in Stanley, Idaho from 1949 to 1951, high school English and music in Arco, Idaho from 1954 to 1957, youth counselor for Dependents of Military Personnel in Verdun, France from 1960 to 1961.

In 1964 Rod married Beverly Wilcoxon.

He was the Senior Minister of Lakeshore Avenue Baptist Church in Oakland, California from 1961 to 1979, Speaker on "Hour of Prayer" Radio Broadcast Station KFAX in San Francisco, California from 1961 to 1979, Adjunct Professor at American Baptist Seminary of the West in preaching in 1966, speaker at numerous retreats and conferences in many states and several foreign countries, Senior Minister of Seattle First Baptist Church in Seattle, Washington from 1980 to 2000 and Adjunct Professor in Spirituality at Northwest Theological Union in Seattle in 1985. In Seattle his sermons were broadcast on KIRO-FM each Sunday morning. He was a trustee for Linfield College from 1990 to 2008 and was a recipient of an Honorary Doctor of Divinity degree from Linfield College on May 31, 1987. He is the author of six books, A Promise of Light, Journey to Inner Space, Love Without Conditions, Wilderness Spirituality, Lessons of the Soul and I Heard A Crow Call My Name. An accomplished composer and lyricist, his hymns are included in Hymns for the Spiritual Journey, used by churches of many denominations. One hymn is published in the Upper Room Worship book. He wrote many articles for various newspapers and magazines. He was a gifted speaker and a talented musician.

Perhaps the most notable facts about Rodney Romney have been his affirmation and inclusion of all people, his honoring of the various pathways by which people seek God, his commitment to peace and nonviolence and his belief in the oneness of all creation.

Rod worked in Oakland for 20 years at the Lakeshore Avenue Baptist Church which integrated during his leadership and today is a racially-integrated church. It was during the turmoil of racial tensions in our country. The next 20 years he was senior pastor at First Baptist Church of Seattle, a large downtown church with around a thousand members. He enjoyed 20 years at this church before retiring to Idaho Falls, Idaho.

Written by Rod, "A large part of my heart is and will always be in the Lost River Valley where I was born, grew up and graduated from high school, and in my own small way, through sermons and books that I have written, I have managed to put Arco on the map for those who otherwise would not have heard about it."

He is survived by his wife of 48 years, Beverly Romney of Idaho Falls, Idaho; his brother, Verl (Cec) Hansen of Buhl, Idaho, sister, Dixie Lainhart of Idaho Falls, Idaho; many extended family members; and the large community of friends, students and co-workers who he helped, mentored or inspired along the way.

Rod was preceded in death by his two older brothers and their wives, Dan (Mary Ellen) and Dick (Helen) Romney.

Rod was a very special, broad-minded, open hearted, inclusive, witty, comforting, encouraging, thoughtful, human, Love-God centered teacher to many seekers over the years. He loved chocolate and was a friend to crows and squirrels.

A Celebration of Life will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, July 13, 2012 at the Baptist Community Church, 402 West Grand Avenue in Arco, Idaho, under the direction of Lost River Funeral Home.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests remembrances may be made to The Seattle First Baptist Church Romney Legacy Fund, 1111 Harvard Avenue, Seattle, WA 98122 or Lakeshore Avenue Baptist Church, 3534 Lakeshore Avenue, Oakland, CA 94610 or to .
Published in The Seattle Times from July 2 to July 3, 2012
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