Rev. Dr. Joseph Martin Hopkins
Rev. Dr. Joseph Martin Hopkins, 100, of Shenango on the Green, New Wilmington, formerly of Kathryn Street, New Wilmington, died on Thursday, Oct. 24, 2019, at Shenango Presbyterian Sr. Care in New Wilmington.
Joseph was born on May 10, 1919 at Mercy Hospital in Pittsburgh, to the late John Howard Hopkins and Grace Marie Martin Hopkins.
He married Lois Elaine McCallum on Dec. 17, 1948, and this past December they celebrated 70 years of marriage. Together they were abundantly blessed with five children, 19 grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren.
Joseph graduated high school from Laurel, Md., in 1935. A lover of learning, music and his Lord, he furthered his education by receiving his bachelors of music degree from Westminster College in 1940, his bachelors of theology from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary in 1943, his masters of education from the University of Pittsburgh in 1948, and his Ph.D. from the University of Pittsburgh in 1954.
Using his devotion to ministry to bless others around the world, Joseph first served as a U.S. Navy chaplain, serving in the Philippines and aboard U.S.S. Tangier, a seaplane tender.
In 1946, he began teaching in the Bible department at his beloved alma mater, Westminster College, and taught there for close to 40 years.
During his time there, he also served locally as a pastor at Mt. Pleasant United Presbyterian Church, in Hickory; a supply pastor at Lebanon United Presbyterian Church in Greenfield; a pastor of visitation at Covenant Presbyterian Church in Sharon; a parish associate at the New Wilmington Presbyterian Church; and acted as an interim supply pastor at numerous area churches.
However, it wasn't just locally that he led others to Jesus. He served and loved wherever he was, and whomever was in front of him, globally. He was a missionary to Malawi, Africa, a place near and dear to his heart, as well as to the Sudan and Haiti.
The greatest joy of his life was his relationship with God, and there was nothing he loved more than sharing that love with everyone whom he encountered; whether they were in the hospital, in prison, in church or in his later years, via encouraging correspondence on Facebook.
In addition to God, Joseph also expressed a great love of music, literature, and travel. Composing over 100 musical pieces and three major musical productions, Joseph loved using his God-given gifts to bless others. At the age of 98 he also published his first children's book, William's Nine Lives.
Leading others on tour groups all over the world, he found adventure and joy in seeing the beautiful landscapes and masterpieces of his Creator painted across the globe.
Joseph never let his age stop him from living his life to the fullest.
Until age 92, he could be found smiling through the streets of New Wilmington, riding his bicycle, and in his most recent years, visiting, praying with, ministering and delivering bulletins to his fellow residents in Shenango on the Green.
Anytime you were blessed enough to cross paths with him, you were greeted with a warm hug and his sense of humor, leaving you with a pun or a line from his favorite TV show, The Three Stooges, and most definitely a little more blessed.
It seems fitting that when he most recently had to receive care at Mercy Hospital, the place of his birth, he said, "I thought I should come and visit once every hundred years."
Now having met his beloved Lord face to face, it seems only fitting to reflect upon the ministry that he modeled here on Earth by one of his favorite verses, 1 Corinthians 15: 58, stating "Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain."
Joseph is survived by his wife, Lois; children: John (Glenda) Hopkins of Spartanburg, S.C.; Kathy Hopkins of Matthews, N.C.; Ralph (Kathy) Hopkins of Red Lion; Martin Hopkins of Polk; Brooke (Gayla) Hopkins of Butler; and Elaine (Brian) Taylor of New Wilmington; among his 19 grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren, whom he loved dearly. He is also survived by many nieces and nephews, with whom he enjoyed connecting over the years.
Preceding him in his death are his parents; two sisters, Anna Catherine Cooper and Margaret Anacker; one brother Adm. Thomas Hopkins; and one granddaughter, Stacy Suzanne Hopkins.
The family would like to express their sincere appreciation for the compassionate care given to Joseph and his family by Shenango Presbyterian Senior Care; Dr. Brian Malley, along with the nursing team and clergy of Mercy Hospital, and Kindred Hospice.
Memorial contributions may be given to New Wilmington Presbyterian Church, Westminster College, or The Malawi Mission Fund in care of the New Wilmington Presbyterian Church.

Joseph Martin, 100, of New Wilmington.
Visitation: 3 to 7 p.m. Thursday (10-31-19) at the SMITH FUNERAL HOME, 310 W. Neshannock Ave., New Wilmington.
Memorial services: 10 a.m. Friday (11-1-19) at the New Wilmington Presbyterian Church.
Interment: Private, at Fair Oaks Cemetery, New Wilmington.
Published on October 27, 2019

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Showing 10 of 6 posts

Annette Rowley Ieda (class of 1970)
Nov 08, 2019
I can't believe Dr. Hopkins lived to be 100 years old and was still serving is Lord almost until the end. He made an impact on my life; not only as a professor of religion, but as a friend who used to drive me to concerts in Youngstown to see the symphony play. (since I was a violin major). He always went well beyond the call of duty. I used to be scared of his driving, but I guess it never killed anybody, and he survived longer than most people. Not survived; Thrived! Congratulations on a great life well lived! And thank you for being part of my life while I was a student at Westminster College.
Dr. Lawrence E. Shafer
Nov 08, 2019
His devotion to our Lord was a great inspiration. His departure leaves a void that is hard to fill. He will be missed.
Jim Oravetz '49
Nov 08, 2019
We had the pleasure of recording Joe's wedding while still at Westminster. Another delight was taking Joe to lunch at the Harvard Club in Manhattan. And enjoying NYC from our 9th floor apartment, Many happy memories.
Bill (Buster)&Darla; Stonebraker
Nov 01, 2019
Our condolences And Prayers
Constance Mohr Wright
Oct 29, 2019
Wishing peace in the hearts of Dr.Hopkinā€™s family and friends as they recall good memories together.
Julie Dever
Oct 28, 2019
God bless the family of Joe Hopkins. A portion of His spirit be visited on each of you as you remember ALL of the wonderful times with him. I was blessed to meet him, and twice blessed to benefit from his comic strip ministry!