The Loves of Wayne Griffen

  By Pat King, Wesley Homes Des Moines resident In honor of Pastor Appreciation Month, Wesley Homes Des Moines resident Pat King profiles Rev. Wayne Griffen, retired. Wayne was 12 years old when he thought he had heard the call to become a minister in the Methodist Church. By the time he was in the eighth grade, he knew almost for sure that God had called him. Then music called, too. Wayne played piano, sang bass, played the e-flat tuba and directed a choir. Perhaps, he thought, music — not ministry — was God’s plan for his life after all. On the front porch of the Mason Church parsonage in Tacoma, he talked over his indecision with his minister, Dr. Roy Smith. He impressed on Wayne, “The greatest good you can do is to be a minister.” School, seminary and regular correspondence with a lovely girl named Marion followed. When she agreed to be his wife, Wayne said, “There was nothing I had ever been so happy about.” At the 1944 Pacific Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church, Wayne, by then a young pastor, “had the privilege of voting for Dr. Stanley Logan’s proposal for establishing a retirement home called Wesley Gardens,” said Wayne. In 1986, Wesley Gardens became Wesley Homes. He and Marion had four children: Kathleen (deceased), David, John and Bruce (deceased). Wayne has been a minister to Methodist churches in Sedro Woolley, Tacoma, Seattle twice, Port Orchard and Spokane. Of his 30 years of ministry, Wayne most remembers the privilege of being with people and helping them. He won the respect of his congregation with his example of honesty, dependability, trust, hopefulness and caring. Wayne and Marion moved to the former residence of Dr. Logan, now Cottage #47, at Wesley Homes Des Moines in 1997. After Marion’s death in 2003, Wayne eased his loneliness by moving to The Gardens in 2007, where “I have the best room in the entire building.” In 1960, Wayne, who is now 97, was given some dahlia tubers by a member of his congregation in Port Orchard. He planted them and the resulting beautiful flowers had Wayne hooked on this new hobby. His favorite is the pink Gay Princess. Wayne has received a whopping 35-40 ribbons and commendations from the Puget Sound Dahlia Association. Today, the best room in The Gardens has a dahlia in every vase.

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