Pastors' Memoirs

John Price, Jr., 1929-2003

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  The Rev. John Price Jr. was born in Yeager, West Virginia, on May 31, 1929, son of Mr. John Price Sr. and Mrs. Virginia Barrett Price. Following his father’s death, John Price Jr., at an early age moved with the family to Radford, Virginia. In addition to his parents, Rev. Price was also preceded in death by: his son, John Price III; two sisters, Thelma Vaughn and Vivian Alexander; and one brother, Donald Roland Price.

  John is survived by his wife of 56 years, Beatrice Hall Price; sisters, Willie Mae Clemons, Constance P. (Carlton) English, and Patricia Sherman; brothers, Maxie (Ruby) Price, Arrington Lee (Lela) Price, and William H. (Stephanie) Price; brother-in-law, James Hall (Lois); sister-in-law, Clara Mae (Curtis) Blake; grandson, John B. (Cyreeta) Price and great-granddaughter, Ashley Monique Price; daughter-in-law, Lola Price; a foster daughter, Dee (Buddy) Broyles; along with a host of nieces, nephews, and cousins and his Asbury United Methodist Church family.

  Licensing for John took place in 1957 at New Mount Olive Methodist Church in Radford where he began his ministry. He was ordained Deacon in 1958 by Bishop Edgar A. Love, and Elder in 1965 by Bishop Charles F. Golden. With his wife, Beatrice, at his side, he served Mt. Pleasant in Dublin, Bethel in Pembroke, and Mt. Pleasant in Marion, Virginia, and St. Mark in Kingsport, Tennessee. These churches were in the East Tennessee Annual Conference and the Tennessee-Kentucky Conference during the days of the Central Jurisdiction of the United Methodist Church. He also served as Executive Director of the Upper Tennessee Human Development Agency.

  John and Beatrice’s only son, John III, was killed in 1978. This was devastating and the couple left Tennessee and did not serve an appointment for several years while John pursued other business ventures. In 1982, John was appointed pastor of Asbury in Christiansburg. In an article about his career and living with cancer, the NRV Current section of the Roanoke Times in May 2002 states "Price now calls the decision to return to ministry a lifesaver." More and more in his work, he began to emphasize the importance of family… part of each service is set aside for congregation members to share news about their households. Though still painful, the wounds from his son’s killing began a measure of healing. "In a way, I think Asbury became kind of a substitute," Price says. "Particularly when you think of the kind of love we lavished on an only child. My wife and I needed some of that returned to us." Along with Asbury he also served as an associate director of the Wesley Foundation of Virginia Tech and served both until 1988. In that year he was appointed Associate Council Director of the Virginia Conference Council on Ministries in Richmond and served until his retirement in 1994. He returned to Christiansburg and pastored Franklin Street in Wytheville and Crossroads in Grayson County from 1994 -1996. In 1996 he returned to Asbury to lead the building of the new church facilities and served as the revered pastor until his passing on April 30, 2003.

  The Asbury Church family is thankful to God for the life and ministry of the Rev. John Price Jr. and for the great love and family relationship that was shared between us.

— Nathaniel L. Bishop



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