The Marvin C. Griffin Preaching Collection includes both written [coming soon] and recorded materials pertaining to Reverend Marvin Griffin's ministerial research and sermons, his political involvement, and his leadership in the Baptist Convention on the state and national level.
The collection begins with Griffin's education in 1940 and ends with his retirement in 2011. Subjects include ministerial research for specific organizations as well as extensive research for radio broadcasts and sermons, collected materials and reports from Griffin's involvement with various Baptist organizations as well as various political and civic organizations, mostly in the Austin area.
Finally, the audio materials include video tapes, reels and cassette tapes of sermons and speeches by Griffin and other prominent Baptist pastors.
Marvin Collins Griffin was born in Wichita, Kansas, on February 20, 1923. He was the son of William Marvin Collins and Beulah Howell. Raised by his uncle and aunt near Dallas, Texas, Griffin felt a call to the ministry at the age of seven.
Griffin used his education to prepare for a career in preaching the gospel and fighting for African American civil rights. He spent his youth in the Dallas public school system. In 1943, Griffin graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree from Bishop College. Four years later, he earned a degree in Divinity from Oberlin Graduate School of Theology. In 1955, Griffin became the first African American to graduate from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary when he earned a Master of Religious Education degree. In 1990, Griffin received his Doctorate of Ministry from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary.
Reverend Griffin began preaching in 1940 and was ordained two years later. While earning his degree from Oberlin, Griffin served as a professor at the Oklahoma Baptist School of Religion (1944-1948). His first significant pastoral assignment was New Hope Baptist Church in Waco. From 1951 to 1969, Griffin led his growing congregation in social activism within the community. He began an extensive radio broadcast ministry and led various marches and pickets in Waco.
In 1969, Griffin relocated to Ebenezer Baptist Church in Austin, Texas, where he remained for the next forty-two years. Once again, Griffin believed that his church should be involved in the spiritual and secular life of the community. He led the church’s efforts in creating the East Austin Economic Development Corporation (EAEDC) in 1998. This organization allowed the church to assist the underprivileged through housing programs, day care centers, counseling, and financial assistance. In 2002, the EAEDC building was renamed in honor of Marvin Griffin. Reverend Griffin retired from his pastorship of the Ebenezer Baptist Church on July 31, 2011.
In addition to his pastoral duties, Griffin was also involved in local politics and denominational affairs. He served as the first African American president of the Austin Independent School District Board of Directors when the schools were using buses to encourage desegregation. Griffin was also involved in the Missionary Baptist General Convention of Texas, he was the Director of the Christian Education Enrichment Program at the National Baptist Fellowship of Churches, and he served as a Director-Lecturer for the Teacher Training Department of the National Baptist Sunday School Congress.
Griffin married Lois King on August 5, 1944. They had three daughters: Marva Lois Carter, Gaynelle Jones, and Ria Griffin. Mrs. Lois Griffin passed away in 2006 and Marvin Griffin passed away on December 25, 2013.
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This collection is considered an active collection. Items may be added periodically as they are processed through the Digitization and Digital Collection Preservation Services group.