George Gruen, 86, Ephrata, minister, coached inner city kids’ sports in Philly

By on August 6, 2014
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George Gruen, 86, of 16 Kennedy Drive, Ephrata, died unexpectedly Saturday, July 26, 2014 at Ephrata Hospital with his family by his side.

Born in West Caldwell, N.J., he was the son of the late Samuel and Mary Motzko Gruen. George was the husband of Jean Stowman-Schmidt Gruen and they celebrated their 12th wedding anniversary on June 24. He was previously married to the late Doris M. Simerson Gruen who died on October 9, 2001.

George graduated from Nyack College, Nyack, N.Y., and began his career with the Christian and Missionary Alliance in 1950. In 1978, he went full time with Truth for Israel, Inc. Upon moving to Philadelphia in the 1950s, George coached championship basketball and baseball teams in Philadelphia city leagues. He loved to take “his kids” water skiing just to tell them that Jesus, the Messiah, loved them and he did, too.

As an Ordained Minister, he always said he was just a little guy in God’s army, but those who knew him, knew he was actually a giant in God’s army. He was the President and Director for Truth for Israel, Inc.

His passion and sole vision was to tell everyone he met that the Messiah died for them and all they had to do was confess their sins, accept Him as their Savior, and they could join him and go to heaven when they died. While all who knew him will miss him, we know that he is with the Messiah now, seeing the Master whom he so faithfully served these past 64 years in full-time ministry.

Not only did he love sharing the Gospel with all who would listen, he also spent time reading his Bible, putting jigsaw puzzles together, playing Sudoku and Wii, golfing, bowling, and enjoyed traveling especially to Bermuda, Ocean City, N.J. and Florida.

He is survived by his wife: Jean; and three children: David, husband of Pam Gruen, Ga.; Stephen, husband of Dawn Gruen, Pa.; and Dawn, wife of Eric Rissmiller, Lititz; six grandchildren: Jacob Rissmiller, Sarah, wife of Chris Snell, John, Julie, Rachel, and Hannah Gruen.

He was preceded in death by two brothers and one sister.

Please join the family in celebrating George’s Life and Home Going Service on Tuesday, Aug. 19, at 6:30 p.m. at the Calvary Chapel Chester Springs, 217 Dowlin Forge Road, Exton. The family will receive friends at the Chapel from 5:30 p.m. until time of service. Private interment will take place at the Philadelphia Memorial Park Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Truth For Israel, Inc., P.O. Box 156, Ephrata, PA 17522.

The family has entrusted Spacht Life Celebration Home, Lititz, to handle the arrangements. Place condolences at lifecelebration.com.

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