June 22nd, 1928 - July 18th, 2019
Benjamin Prashad was born on June 22, 1928, in Bewar, a small town in Uttar Pradesh, India to Rev. Janki and Lizzie Prashad.
After completing Bible School, he worked as a pastor for almost 50 years till his retirement in 1997.
Pastor Benjamin was a dedicated Bible teacher, fervent evangelist and talented musician that planted several churches in Kannauj, Kanpur and New Delhi. He often used his bicycle to travel to remote villages in earlier years and never tired from spending time with people. He continued in his evangelistic passion till the end by always maintaining a stash of biblical literature to give away to young and old alike.
Benjamin and Salomie were married for 55 years till Salomie passed away in 2012. They had 4 children and they were grandparents and great grandparents. His capacity to love and share earned him the fond title of “Dadaji” (Grandpa) in the community and church. Benjamin’s faith was real, and he lived it with an undeterred focus each day of his life. During his active service, he held the term position as the synod moderator of the Reformed Presbyterian Church of India and Presbyterian Theological Seminary in India. Together, Benjamin and Salomie also started “New Light” Christian School in Kanpur. Together they also taught “Basic Youth Conflicts” a training course to develop healthy Christian relationships – in many parts of North India including Manipur, Shillong, and Bhutan. Benjamin served also as the North India coordinator for TAFTEE – a theology by extension program that originated in Latin America and saw great success in India. Benjamin and Salomie, being musicians helped publish a Hindi Hymnal called “Aradhana Bhajanawali” which is still available in Christian bookstores in the latest edition. Its predecessor was a songbook featuring songs (Katha) written and composed by his father, Rev. Janki Prashad! All this and much more was accomplished despite having never finished grade school and completed theological education by giving exams orally! It is only by the Grace of God.
Despite having considerable access to property acquisition, Benjamin never broke trust and never owned any home. In the last few years, his room at the ‘Lodge’ was the closest he came to any sense of ownership. He was an enthusiastic fisherman, marksman, enjoyed soccer and knew how to fix bicycles. He loved watermelon and never refused tea when it was offered. He was known for his faith, his gentleness and easy-going attitude in life. He loved to be on the move and was known to head out for the day on foot and cover considerable distance ending up at an acquaintance’s home or work for a casual visit and possibly a cup of tea! His countenance seldom revealed any stress and remained peaceful till the last breath.
He is deeply loved and will be deeply missed by his children and their families namely William and Dolly (daughter) Martin of Calgary, David (son) and Anita Benjamin of Calgary, Ruth (daughter) Schenker of Edmonton, and Anup and Molly (daughter) John of Dehradun, India
Likewise, the grandchildren and greatgrandchildren are Richard and Tina Martin (Kiran, Simran, and Jeevan), Jenny Martin, David and Hanan Martin, Dr. Joshua Benjamin, Michael Benjamin, Daniel Schenker, Angela John, and Abhishek John.
In lieu of flowers, kindly consider a donation in his memory to Centre Street Church GM fund, Calgary, Mustard Seed, Calgary or a ministry of your choosing. If you reside in India, kindly consider Faith Academy’s John L Dorsey foundation for needy students in New Delhi, India or Reformed Presbyterian Theological Seminary, Dehradun, India.
Funeral Service will be held at Centre Street Church - Bridgeland Campus (235-8A Street NE) on Friday, July 26, 2019 at 1:00 pm with visitation one hour prior to service. Graveside Service to follow at Queen's Park Cemetery.
To view and share photos, condolences and stories of Benjamin, please visit www.choicememorial.com.