The Rev. Howard Dentler, 90, died July 3, 2013 in Mt. Pleasant.
Funeral services will be held at 1:30 p.m. Aug. 11, in First Presbyterian Church in Mt. Pleasant by the Rev. James P. Johnson, president emeritus of the Christian Church Foundation. Burial will follow in White Oak Cemetery. Memorials will be placed in the Howard E. and Mary Lou Dentler Fund of the Christian Church Foundation that will endow ministries of Week of Compassion, Pension Fund and Lexington Theological Seminary.
Olson-Powell Memorial Chapel is in charge of arrangements. Online condolences may be directed to www.olsonpowell.com.
He was a native of Chicago. He married Mary Lou Schweidler in 1942. She perceded him in death.
After service in the Army during World War II, he received a bachelor’s degree in business from Stetson University in Deland, Fla. in 1948, and operated his parents’ hotel and his own motel in Orlando, Fla.
In 1954, he and his family moved to Lexington, Ky., to attend the College of the Bible, now known as Lexington Theological Seminary.
While a student in the late 1950s, he served First Christian Church of Mays Lick and then Disciples African-American Mays Lick.
He graduated from seminary in 1957 with honors.
While serving as pastor of Central Christian Church in Jacksonville, Fla., in 1961, Rev. Dentler was called to join the Indianapolis, Ind. staff of Dr. Gaines Cook, executive secretary of the International Convention of the Christian Churches – the forerunner of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ).
He was assigned to the Council of Agencies, which was composed of representatives of the various agencies reporting directly or indirectly to the International Convention.
He was asked by Dr. A. Dale Fiers to be his deputy general minister in 1968 following the Disciples’ restructure. He supervised 17 General Assemblies and International Conventions.
He also served on the boards of the National Benevolent Association, Christian Board of Publication, and, for 12 years, the Pension Fund of the Christian Church. He was a trustee for Lexington Theological Seminary.
He was a founding member of the Religious Conference Management Association in 1972.
From 1975 until his retirement, he was chair of the Week of Compassion Committee. He also served on the board of Heifer International,
In retirement, the he and his wife first moved to Iowa, then to Jacksonville, Fla., and then back to Iowa in 2007 to be near family.
He is survived by a son, Bruce (Ann) Dentler of Spokane, Wash.; two daughters, Bonnie (Jack) Kremer of Mt. Pleasant, and Patti (Craig) VanSandt of Rock Island, Ill.; 14 grandchildren; and 15 great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his wife; his parents; a son, David Dentler; and a brother and sister.