In 1986, Mark Beeson and his wife, Sheila, planted the seeds of Granger Community Church (GCC) in their living room, with fewer than ten people. Their dream was to reach out to those who weren’t currently attending church and share the truth that they mattered to God. Today, thanks to Mark and Sheila’s dream and the 33+ years of ministry they poured their lives into, Granger Community Church is a flourishing church gathering online in homes across the globe and at two campuses, in Granger and Elkhart, Indiana.
On December 17, 2020, Mark Beeson went to heaven after a courageous 15-month battle with pancreatic cancer. Mark had countless degrees, awards, accolades and accomplishments, but he never cared about any of those things. It was his charisma and care for others that drew people to him. Even on his darkest days he wanted to encourage, to help, to remind people how much they mattered to God. Mark’s favorite Bible verse was John 10:10, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” And that’s the way he lived.
The impact of Mark Beeson’s life and ministry is not just felt and experienced by the current Granger Community Church family, but we believe it will be felt eternally, through the changed lives of thousands.
He loved calling out the best in those around him, whether they were in their 90s or in second grade. There was an especially soft spot in his heart for middle school students. He spent a week at middle school camp every summer for 49 years.
Mark’s hilarious stories were just one of the things that made him so magnetic and relatable. His self-deprecating humor, combined with his brilliant wit and comedic timing, made him remarkably entertaining whether he was around the breakfast table with five people or preaching to thousands.
He was a photographer, stating, “If you don’t take the picture you won’t have the picture.”
He loved nature and had unending, detailed knowledge about animals.
He was an outdoorsman, often testing his survival skills with large animal encounters (and that one time he got stranded in a storm in Alaska for 14 days).
He often said, “Attitude is everything. We can’t control what happens, but we can control how we react to what happens.” That’s why, when he was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer, he didn’t spend his time fighting death, but doubled down to squeeze more life out of the ridiculously short time he was given.
WHAT OTHER LEADERS HAVE SHARED ABOUT MARK
“I believe Granger Community Church has one of the best pastors in America. Mark Beeson is a tremendous teacher.” Dr. John Maxwell, cutting-edge entrepreneur, best-selling author and dynamic speaker.
“Granger Community Church is the best example of a purpose-driven church in the country. And Mark Beeson is a phenomenal communicator and leader.” Dr. Rick Warren, best-selling author of The Purpose-Driven Life, and founding pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, CA.