Dean Patton, Elder Candidate
I was born in a rural community in southern West Virginia. My parents were both believers and raised us in a very church/God centered family. I grew up as a Baptist, and early knew that “Jesus” was the right answer to most questions. I still believe that He is the answer to most of my issues, but my answers then were mainly motivated by my desire to be seen as a good and religious boy. Unfortunately, that attitude persisted for a very long time.
After graduating from high school, I attended Appalachian Bible College for one year, and then Marshall University before going to medical school at West Virginia University. Deanna and I had known each other since I was 15, and we got married just before I started medical school. In fact, our honeymoon was a trip through the mountains of WV, enjoying some State Parks, and moving into our mobile home in Morgantown, WV. I started school 4 days after we said, “I do.”
God blessed us with three children. Jonathan, our oldest lives in Farmville, and is a graphics designer. Matthew, 13 months younger than Jonathan, taught middle school Spanish and died in a car crash at age 32. Joanna, who lives here in Cary, is a Physician Assistant, mother, and wife. We have been blessed with nine grandchildren, he oldest of which is going to be married on May 25.
I practiced in southern WV as a family doctor for 9 years, before we sensed God leading me into academic medicine, and that is when the entire Dean and Deanna Patton clan moved to Greenville, NC, so that I could join the faculty at ECU. At ECU I had lots of opportunities to grow in my career, and through a series of difficult church situations, ended up following our children to Christ Presbyterian Church. Over the more than 20 years in that church, I learned more and more about God’s grace and forgiveness, and understood more and more about my need of Jesus, the risen Son of God, the one who went to the cross to pay for my sins. I can’t point to a time and date when I knew that Jesus really was the answer to my need for salvation, but I came to understand more and more that my salvation was all about His choosing me and bringing me to a point where I believed in Him as my Lord and Savior.
I have had some health issues that influenced Deanna and I to choose to move to Cary, to be closer to our daughter and her family, and to “celebrate” retirement. That led us to Peace Church, and we are both delighted to be a part of this family of believers. I had served as an Elder at Christ Presbyterian and was nominated to serve in that position here. I have finished the required training and am being recommended by the Session to the congregation for you to vote on the recommendation from the session that I join them, serving Jesus, and serving this congregation in the office of Ruling Elder.
If you have any questions about this brief biography or anything else you may have observed or heard, I would invite you to ask.
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