In recognition of Lamar Smith’s lifelong commitment to the United Methodist Church (U.M.C.) and Texas Wesleyan University, a new center will be named after him within the new U.M.C. Central Texas Conference Service Center that is being built as part of the Rosedale Renaissance Project. A $100,000 fundraising campaign is underway for the Rev. Dr. Lamar Edward Smith Center for Evangelism & Church Growth.
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Construction of the new service center is one of the key components to the success of the Rosedale Renaissance Project and the revitalization of the East Rosedale corridor of the city. The proposed building site is at the corner of East Rosedale Street and Vaughn Boulevard, just across the street from Texas Wesleyan’s campus.
The close proximity to campus will allow for partnerships with University faculty to provide opportunities for students who are preparing for seminary studies or those seeking careers in lay ministries.
For more than 60 years, Smith has had a personal and professional relationship with Texas Wesleyan. Following his discharge from the Navy in 1946, he entered college and distinguished himself as a campus leader and scholar. During his graduate studies, he returned to campus to serve as the chaplain and an admissions recruiter. He organized the alumni association and served as its first president in 1952.
In 1970, he was named to the board of trustees, representing the North Texas Conference, and continued in this leadership role throughout his tenure at several positions within the United Methodist Church. In 1978, he was named Alumnus of the Year. On June 1, 2010, he was appointed interim president while the trustees searched for a new president.
Smith’s first church assignment in 1955, when he served as associate minister at the First United Methodist Church. Over the next decade, he helped recruit more than 5,000 new members to the church. He positions took him to Wichita Falls, Baton Rouge and Conroe. Prior to his “retirement” in 1997, Smith was provost of the Texas Annual Conference and assistant to Bishop J. Woodrow Hearn in the Houston area.
His path led him back to where began — First United Methodist Church, where he serves as associate minister of evangelism and teaches a Sunday School class.
Contact Joan S. Canty, vice president for advancement, at (817) 531-4411 or firstname.lastname@example.org.