Maurice L. Draper

August 25, 1918 - September 20, 2012 

Maurice L. Draper

August 25, 1918 - September 20, 2012 

Obituary for Maurice L. Draper

Maurice L. Draper, 94, a minister for the Reorganized CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST of Latter Day Saints (Community of Christ), passed away on Thursday, September 20, 2012 at Rosewood Health Center, Independence, MO. A time of gathering will be held from 6:00- 8:00 p.m. on Tuesday, September 25, 2012 at Carson-Speaks Chapel; 1501 W. Lexington Ave., Independence, MO 64052. Services will take place at 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday, September 26, 2012 at Community of Christ Stone Church; 1012 W. Lexington Ave.
Maurice was born on August 25, 1918 to Earl T. and Olive Irene (Pruden) Draper. A full-time minister since 1937, he held the priesthood office of patriarch/evangelist. Previous assignments included field missionary 1937-1947; member of the Council of Twelve Apostles 1947-1958 and a member of the First Presidency as counselor to President W. Wallace Smith 1958-1978. After leaving the First Presidency, he was the first occupant of the F. Henry Edwards Chair of Religious Studies at Graceland College for the academic year 1978-79, and a second term 1983-84. During 1979-80 he functioned as the Director of Public Affairs for the World Church. In the course of these assignments he traveled widely over the United States and throughout the world.
Maurice held an A.A. degree from the San Bernadino Valley Junior College. In 1937, he continued to pursue his studies at the University of Denver, Spring Hill College, University of Missouri and Kansas City University; earning a B.S. degree from William Jewell College and a M.A. and a Master and Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Kansas.
Mr. Draper was a member and former chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Independence Regional Health Center; Vice-president of the Graceland College Board of Trustees; former member of the Board of Directors of the Missouri Heart Association; Vice-President of the John Whitmer Historical Association; member of the Mormon History Association; Honorary Fellow of the Truman Library Institute; member of Jackson County History Association Society; Co-editor in chief of the Saints Herald; editor of Restoration Studies; Vol. I-III; author of Missionary Methods, Why I Belong, Marriage in the Restoration, Gifts and Fruit of the Spirit, Isles and Continent, Credo, I Believe, and numerous tracts, articles and essays; president of the Community Music Association of Independence and a non-professional string musician in the Independence Symphony Orchestra. Maurice honorably retired from full-time church appointment in August of 1983 after 46 years. He continued to minister to others throughout the rest of his life. Mr. Draper was preceded in death by his loving wife, Olive Ruth (Willis) Draper in 2004, and is survived by their three children; David, Edward, and Janette; and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren; and sisters Helen (Draper) Lents, and Chrystal Crownover. Maurice is also survived by his present wife, Alice McConeley-Johnson-Oltvedt-Draper; step-daughter Glenda Fern Johnson; and numerous nieces, nephews, and friends.

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