Dr. Russell Kenneth Pier, Jr. passed away on February 2, 2021 in Lakeland Florida with his family at his side. He was 95.
Dr. Pier was a pioneer of the Pentecostal faith in the State of Maine, preached to thousands around the world, and was author of several books, the most recent being The Drive of Faith.
On a bright sunny morning, as a 10-year-old boy playing in the mud with his siblings, Russell was invited to church and gave his life to Jesus. He was never ‘called’ to preach, however he saw a world in need and responded with a lifetime of service to His Savior.
He attended the University of Valley Forge, formerly Green Lane Bible Institute; Northpoint Bible College, formerly Zion Bible Institute; and received his BA, MA and Doctorate Degree in Theology from International Seminary in Apopka, FL.
His college sweetheart, the late Dr. Doris Pier (deceased as of 2002), and Dr. Russell Pier founded Faith Bible College International, formerly known as Faith School of Theology, in 1959. During his life he mentored and educated thousands, launching countless ministries and colleges that span across the globe to this day. Generations of pastors, missionaries and Christian educators, the number too great to count, have taken up the call of God on their lives to “Make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Song and of the Holy Spirit,” Mathew 28: 19.
Born on October 11, 1925, in the township of North East, Pennsylvania, to Russell Kenneth Pier Sr. and Helen L. (Hunter) Pier, Russell was the oldest of eight siblings, all who have served Jesus faithfully during their lives. Dr. Pier is survived by his dear wife Joan (Starke) Pier, daughter Dorene (Pier) Royal and her husband James Royal, his granddaughter Julianna (Preble) Fife, great grandchildren Selah Fife, Abigail Fife, Ian Fife and David Fife, step-daughters Kerri Deal and Jodi Holmes, and step-sons Wayne Littlefield and Dennis Littlefield. He is also survived by his sisters Ruth Helen Jones, Mary Jane McNamara and Pamela Daisy Ringer, and their children and grandchildren. His brothers, William Arthur Pier, Stewart Van Pier, Milton Lloyd Pier and Wentworth Laverne Pier were already waiting for him at the gates of Heaven when he arrived, their children and grandchildren are surviving.
Probably the greatest testimony to his faith was that as he took his last breath, his wife, daughter, son-in-law and granddaughter were by his side singing praises as he passed on into Glory and heard the words “Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy Lord.” His legacy will forever live on.
A “Homecoming Celebration” is planned on February 13, 2021 at Faith Bible College International, in the Elva Valerius Memorial Chapel, 29 Main Road in Charleston, ME 04422. The viewing is open to the public in groups of 50 beginning at 11:00 a.m. and the funeral service, by invitation only due to COVID restrictions, will be at 2:00 p.m. Dr. Matthew Ward and Dr. Jeffrey Bell will officiate.
A memorial service is planned on February 27, 2021, 10:00 a.m., at Victory Church, Chapel of Lights, 1401 Griffin Road, Lakeland, Florida. Due to COVID restrictions this is limited to 100 people by RSVP only. Dr. Clayton Langley will officiate.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the ongoing ministry of Faith Bible College International under the Doris E. Pier Scholarship Fund online at www.faithbci.org or via mail to Faith Bible College International 29 Main Road, Charleston ME 04422. Condolences and memories may be shared on the Brookings & Smith Funeral Home ‘memory wall’ at www.brookingssmith.com.