The Alliance Loses a Spiritual Giant

dr-joeAlliance pioneer Dr. Joseph C. Wenninger (Dr. Joe) died of natural causes on January 19, 2010, leaving behind his own rich Alliance legacy. He was just shy of his 92nd birthday. Dr. Joe was born February 23, 1919. “I high-fived A. B. Simpson on my way down,” he quipped many times when he told people that he was born the same year that the Alliance founder died.

Dr. Joe found his way to The Alliance when his future father-in-law suggested that he attend St. Paul Bible College (now Crown College). He later received a doctorate in higher education from the University of Minnesota in 1969. Dr. Joe’s career as a C&MA official worker began in 1941. He served with the C&MA for more than 60 years in a myriad of roles, ranging national director for Higher Education to president of Simpson College (now Simpson University). He also served as dean at Crown College and assitant to C&MA president, L. L. King. He was King’s ghostwriter.

Throughout his lifetime, Dr. Joe embraced thousands of people he called friends, but one was of special importance to him. “His friendship with A.W. Tozer was very meaningful to him,” says his daughter, Dawn Hardison. “Tozer would invite Dad to lead worship music at his events.”

Dr. Joe coordinated the relocation of the C&MA Archives when the organization moved from Nyack, New York, to Colorado Springs, Colorado, in 1989 and was then appointed director for C&MA Archives. Dr. Joe was passionate about preserving Alliance history to keep its heritage alive in the hearts of future generations.

As a result of Dr. Joe’s efforts, the C&MA Archives maintains an abundance of resources, including original documents and books written by A. B. Simpson and A. W. Tozer. This collection ensures the C&MA remembers God’s work in its midst, its place within Christendom, and its place as a people before God. His official retirement date is listed as 1984, but Dr. Joe continued to serve at the National Office until 2007, when at the age of 88, this C&MA patriarch passed his baton to the next generation of keepers of the Alliance heritage.

Today, the C&MA Archives is recognized as one of the most comprehensive and well-organized archival collections among religious organizations. It has the esteemed reputation as a credible reference for not only Alliance missionary work but also valuable historical documentation, including the discovery of Stone Age people groups in Indonesia’s Shangri La-the Baliem Valley.

Resources are available online, free-of-charge for private, scholarship, and research purposes only, and national and international researchers from universities as well as other mission agencies frequent the office.

Dr. Joe will be remembered as man with a passion for Jesus and a heart for the lost, who refused to let his age stop him from serving God or the Alliance family. His wife of 68 years, Alyce, as well as his son Paul and daughter Dawn, survives him.

One wonders what future Alliance giant Dr. Joe high-fived on his way up.

Funeral services will be on Monday, January 25 at 11 a.m. at Lighthouse Temple in Colorado Springs, with interment at nearby Fairview Cemetery.

A memorial fund has been established in Joe’s memory. The family is asking that NO FLOWERS be sent, but if people would like to make a contribution to Shalom Park in Aurora, Colorado, in Joe’s name it would be appreciated greatly. Shalom Park is the retirement center where Joe and Alyce have resided since 2006.

A memorial service also will be held at Shalom Park on Tuesday January 26 at 3:00 p.m.

Shalom Park
14800 East Belleview Drive
Aurora, CO  80015

Any questions concerning the memorial fund should be directed to Michelle at 303-680-5000. Any questions regarding the service can be directed to Bernard Wenninger at 303-277-9181 (brother of Joe Wenninger).

Condolences may be sent to:
Dawn Hardison
19777 East Caspian Circle
Aurora, CO 80013


Get Involved...


We cannot “Live the Call Together” unless prayer is central to all we do.
Pray with us »


Is God calling you to service? We’re here to help you connect your passion with God’s purpose.
Serve with The Alliance »


Help build Christ’s Church by supporting the ministry and workers of The Alliance.
Give today »