Joseph W. Brown

May 07, 2019
Joseph Brown

Thomaston — The Rev. Joseph W. Brown, 90, went home to be with his Lord, Saturday, May 4, 2019, at Sussman House in Rockport.

Born in Pennsylvania June 21, 1928, he was one of eight children born to B. Stanley and Bessie Wiles Brown. Joe grew up in Rochester, N.Y., where he attended school. After leaving school to help support his family, Joe later earned his GED.

At the age of 17, having barely survived a diving accident, Joe dedicated his life to the Lord and serving him. In 1951 he graduated from New England Bible Institute in Framingham, Mass., and was licensed to preach. From there, Joe moved to Torrington, Conn., where he started an Assembly of God Church. During this time, he stayed in touch with his college sweetheart, Marilyn Burke, who had moved there to run a children’s program. The two were married Sept. 19, 1953. While in Connecticut, Joe and Marilyn welcomed two children into their family, William and Judith.

Next the family moved to Hamburg, N.J., where Joe pastored a church for just over two years. His thirst for knowledge and desire to serve the Lord led Joe and his family to Missouri, where he earned his bachelor's degree from Central Bible Institute. Returning to Connecticut, the family stayed with friends while Joe was a candidate at churches up and down the East Coast.

Accepting a pulpit in Thomaston, Joe pastored the Thomaston Assembly of God Church for more than30 years. Here in Maine, the family welcomed their third child, a son, Mark.

Joe had a heart for service and his love for others shined in all of the work he did. He was instrumental in the development of Thomaston Inter-Faith Fellowship. His bond with others and their common goal to show Christ’s love and help those in need is what led them to establish such vital community organizations as the Thomaston Food Pantry and Hospitality House. He was also active in the prison ministry, as well as serving as treasurer and presbyter for the District Assemblies of God.

Joe’s life centered around ministry and serving others, but he loved to have fun himself as well. Always active, he loved a good round of golf, watching the Red Sox or Patriots, and even bowled in the Senior Bowling League until his 90th birthday. He never missed the chance to play a good-natured prank, and could often be heard playing the piano or accordion.

Together with his beloved wife, he especially enjoyed a trip to England for their 25th wedding anniversary, and a tour of Israel and Greece, given to them by their church family upon retirement. They were active and firm believers in visitation and often looked in on, called and prayed for those who couldn’t make it to church, were shut in or just in need of a listening ear.

He will be sadly missed by all who loved him.

Predeceased by all of his siblings, his wife, Marilyn, and a grandson-in-law, Sam Whitley, both in 2015, Joe is survived by his children, William Brown and his wife, June, of Hope, Judith Hastings and her husband, Ronnie, of Thomaston, Mark Brown and his wife, Sonya, of Columbia, S.C.; four grandchildren, James Brown and his wife, Heidi, Lynn Jackson and her husband, Ravi, Stacey Whitley and her husband, Jim Denman, Scott Hastings and his wife, Kristy; and eight great-grandchildren, Colton and Hailie, Felicity and Mina, Brayden, Tessa and Tucker, and Robert.

Family and friends are invited to visit from 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 8, at Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home, 110 Limerock St., Rockland. A home-going celebration will be held at 10 a.m. Thursday, May 9, at Thomaston Assembly of God Church, 14 Roxbury St.

Those who wish may make memorial donations to the TIF Food Pantry, c/o Roberta Carmichael, 9 Elm St., Thomaston, ME 04861.

To share a memory or condolence with the Rev. Brown’s family, visit their Book of Memories at

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Comments (1)
Posted by: Stormie Hendrickson | May 07, 2019 11:24

Heaven gained a wonderful man. Rev. Joe Brown was a true man of God. I have so many fond memories of him. My condolences to the family.

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