Long-time ACU professor Dr. Paul Southern dies at 98


For immediate release
July 20, 1999

ABILENE - Dr. Paul Southern, 98, a longtime professor at Abilene Christian University and gospel preacher, died Friday, July 16, 1999. He was born in Stephenville, Texas, on April 16, 1901.

A 1930 graduate of ACU, Dr. Southern preached for more than 60 years. He served many churches across the United States and preached on every continent except Antarctica.

Southern began a 33-year teaching career at ACU in 1937, and he served as chairman of ACU's Bible department from 1951 until his retirement from ACU in 1970.

While teaching at ACU, he also preached for several Abilene Churches of Christ, including Central, 1937-45; 16th and Vine, 1948-57; Woodlawn, 1957-62; and Westgate, 1962-70.

Before joining the ACU faculty and while working on a master's degree, Southern preached at South Main Church of Christ in Weatherford, Texas, and at the Armstrong Avenue Church of Christ in Denison, Texas.

While working on a doctorate degree in the 1940s at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky., Southern preached at two Louisville Churches of Christ, the Napoleon Boulevard. congregation and the Bardstown congregation.

In 1986, Southern and his wife, Margaret, were given ACU's Christian Service Award for a lifetime of dedication and service to God and their support of Christian education.

Southern and his wife both attended ACU. After he received his bachelor's of arts degree in Bible at ACU, he earned a master's degree from Texas Christian University, then completed his doctorate degree in 1948 at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky.

After retiring from ACU, Southern taught at Columbia Christian College in Portland, Ore.; European Christian College in Vienna, Austria; Michigan Christian College in Rochester, Mich.; Macquarie School of Biblical Studies in Sydney, Australia; and South Pacific Bible College in Tauranga, New Zealand. He served as a contributing editor for noted Christian publications and author for Sweet and Quality publishers.

The Southerns traveled extensively, doing mission work across the United States and in more than 35 nations throughout the world. Southern preached throughout Australia and New Zealand. He conducted the first annual Scandinavian Bible School in 1965. The Southerns also traveled extensively in the Bible lands and in Western Europe.

Southern served in numerous organizations, both locally and nationally, including the Abilene Council on Alcoholism, the Texas Association for Mental Health and the National Council on Family Relations.

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Last update: July 20, 1999
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