We were saddened Thursday to learn of the passing of someone whose legacy is the very definition of leading by example.
Father Ralph Beiting came to visit Appalachia in 1946, and his heart would not allow him to leave for long. He returned in 1950 to lead an unbuilt church, and he went on to do so much more.
The impact Father Beiting has had on Eastern Kentucky becomes clear when attempting to list his accomplishments — founder of Christian Appalachian Project, founder of Father Beiting Appalachian Mission Center, builder and founder of 20 churches in Eastern Kentucky, founder of Mountain Christian Academy, founder of the Maytown Center, founder of Point of Hope, and the list goes on.
Father Beiting was never shy about attempting to fill a need, and when he looked at Appalachia, he saw a lot of needs to be filled.
Although he would become an icon for the region and for the spirit of charity and volunteerism, he was never one to seek glory for himself. He would stand front and center, when the time called for it, but only to urge others to join him in meeting the physical and spiritual needs of those he served.
Each of us can pay tribute to his memory by reaching out to a neighbor in need. We have a feeling he would like that.
— The Floyd County Times