HAYS, Kan.—Lynn L. Sparkman, state representative of the Mid-Continent Association of Regular Baptist Churches, died on Dec. 23, 2010, at age 76.
Lynn came to a personal relationship with Christ through the ministry of John R. Rice in January 1942 at age 7. He felt the call to preach when he was in sixth grade. While in geography class, looking at a map of Kansas, he noticed many small towns. He wondered whether those towns had any churches in them—and he felt a burden to ensure that people in those towns heard the gospel.
Lynn was ordained by his home church, First Baptist Church, Elkhart, Kan., in July 1956. He graduated from Bob Jones University in January 1959. After marrying Alma Jean Warren on June 4, 1959, Lynn worked as an associate pastor at Bible Baptist Church in Colorado Springs for the summer, then he returned to Bob Jones University to finish his master’s degree, which he completed in January 1960.
In the ensuring years Lynn ministered at Kinsley Baptist Church, Kinsley, Kan., and First Baptist Church, LaCrosse, Kan. While ministering in LaCrosse, Lynn and Alma became more exposed to the community of Hays, and in 1969 he founded High Plains Baptist Church in Hays, Kan. For 30 years Lynn served as the church’s pastor, eventually becoming pastor emeritus. While pastoring, Lynn also served as a volunteer chaplain for the Army Reserves from 1975 to 1999. After retiring from High Plains Baptist in November 1999, Lynn served as interim pastor in Newton, Kan.; Lincoln, Neb.; and Wilson, Kan. He was also legislative representative of the American Association of Christian Schools, and enjoyed taking missions trips to Argentina, Brazil, and Lahore, Pakistan.
Pastor Sparkman developed a deep love for the Muslim world and a desire to bring Christ to this dry and neglected mission field. He became the first field representative for Arabic Bible Outreach Ministry, serving from 2004 to 2010. During his ministry he visited many Baptist seminaries and Christian colleges to raise awareness of Islam and the need of missionaries and Christian workers in the Arab and Muslim world.
Lynn was preceded in death by his parents, Russell and Marie Sparkman, and a brother, Gair.
Survivors include his wife of 51 years, Alma; three sons, David, Jon, and Scot; a brother, Lane; and 10 grandchildren.