NORQUAY, SK (January 5, 2010) – A memorial service will be conducted on Friday for Keith C. Fullerton, retired Evangelical Covenant Church pastor and former superintendent of the Evangelical Covenant Church of Canada, who died suddenly Sunday evening.
A viewing and gathering of family and friends will take place at 7 p.m. Thursday at Valley Evangelical Covenant Church in Durban, MB. The memorial service will be conducted at 2 p.m. on Friday at the Evangelical Covenant Church in Norquay, SK. Interment will take place in the church cemetery at 1 p.m. preceding the service.
Fullerton and his wife, Viola, had just completed a move from Surrey, British Columbia, to Norquay, Saskatchewan, a few days earlier on December 30.
He grew up in the Swan River region of Manitoba and had an early affiliation with the Covenant – as a teenager, he was a charter member of the Valley Covenant Church in Durban, Manitoba. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree from United College (today the University of Winnipeg) and taught school for three years. He moved to Chicago in 1961 to attend North Park Theological Seminary for two years. He completed his seminary training at Lutheran Theological Seminary in Saskatoon and a few years later completed additional training in church growth at the Schuller Institute and in evangelism at the Billy Graham School of Evangelism. He was ordained in the Covenant in 1968.
Two years later, Fullerton returned to Canada and served a circuit of four Covenant churches in Alberta: Breton, Warburg, Alder Flats and Winfield. He also served congregations in Melfort and Saskatoon, Saskatchewan; Calgary, Alberta; Anchorage, Alaska; and Surrey, British Columbia.
Fullerton served as conference superintendent from 1978 to 1982. He also served in many leadership positions in the Covenant throughout his life. Most recently Keith served as a member of the Covenant Executive Board from 2001 to 2007. He also served on the former Covenant Communications board for three years.
Among his many accomplishments was his motion during the 1976 Annual Meeting supporting the ordination of women in the Evangelical Covenant Church (ECC). In 2004, he wrote the 100th Anniversary History of the Evangelical Covenant Church of Canada. He was scheduled to teach a module of Canadian Covenant History during the Covenant History Orientation Course in Denver during the 2010 Midwinter Pastors Conference the end of this month. He also was in the early stages of writing a history of Covenant Bible College.
“Whether he was serving on a Covenant board, in a conference role, or faithfully as a pastor, Keith demonstrated a passion and deep commitment to the mission of Christ, especially the marginalized,” said ECC President Gary Walter.
“Keith has been a significant individual in my life,” said Jeff Anderson, who now serves as conference superintendent. “He’s been our historical foundation,” Anderson says of Fullerton’s role as the conference’s historian, “to help keep our history straight. But there was another side to him as well – someone who cared so deeply about others. He was a blessing to have in a church.”
In addition to his wife, survivors include four children: Shelly, Delano, Mark, and Sean; and five brothers: Norman, Tim, David, Rev. A.L. Fullerton, and Rev. Daniel Fullerton (both ordained Covenant pastors).
Editor’s note: Click here to view a three-minute YouTube portion of a video recorded last October as Fullerton led the communion service during a conference event.