OMF is sad to announce the death of former General Director Dr. Michael Griffiths (1928-2022) on 9 January at the age of 93.
Michael was the sixth General Director of OMF, serving between 1969 and 1980. He was one of the youngest individuals to take on the role at the age of 41. He guided the organisation through a key stage in its transformation from the China Inland Mission to work in 11 countries across East Asia. He also oversaw OMF’s entry into Cambodia in 1974 and exit 11 months later.
Before serving as General Director, Michael focused on student work. He spent three years with Intervarsity Fellowship (now UCCF) supporting Christian Unions around the UK. In 1957 Michael and his wife Valerie joined OMF. They went to Japan where he worked alongside KGK, the Christian student movement there.
After 23 years with OMF, Michael & Valerie moved on to London Bible College, where Michael served as principal for nine years. He later became the first Professor of Mission Studies at Regent College, Vancouver. He was later able to return to student work as he served alongside Valerie as Ministers-at-Large with the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students until 1998.
From early in his career, Michael was well known for his popular writing and speaking ministry, blessing a generation of Christians around the world. In total he wrote more than 20 books including Tinker, Tailor, Missionary, Give Up Your Small Ambitions and Cinderella with Amnesia, which became a bestseller.
He leaves behind his wife Valerie and their children John, Bronwen, Nigel, and Glyn.
We will be sharing a fuller reflection on Michael’s life in the next few days.
In a statement, his family added:
‘Through his 93 years Mike had a remarkable and multi-faceted Christian ministry as a leader, teacher and writer. Above all else Mike was a passionate advocate for global mission and evangelism.
To his closest family Dad/ Grandpa/ Great Grandpa will always be remembered for his love of nature, his infectious sense of fun and his tendency to embellish every fishing/ birdwatching/ butterfly-catching enterprise.
A Thanksgiving service for Mike is planned in the Spring when we hope an improvement in Covid restrictions will enable more people to join with us to celebrate Mike’s life. If you would like to send a message to Valerie and family (John, Bronwen, Nigel, Glyn) please get in touch through the details below. Additionally, the family would love to see or hear any video or audio footage of Mike’s preaching and teaching, or indeed any anecdotes and memories of Mike you might have.
The family are very grateful for the messages of love and support we’ve already received. The knowledge of the positive impact he has made on so many lives is a great consolation to us at this time.’
Press and other enquiries
Please contact Reuben Grace, OMF (UK) Content & Media Coordinator