SEARCY, Arkansas (BNC) – European evangelist Doyle Max Kee passed away in Searcy, Arkansas at the age of 80 on January 25, 2019.

After spending 47 years in Geneva, Switzerland, Doyle and Barbara Kee moved to Searcy in 2017.

Doyle was born on May 13, 1938 in Tipton, Oklahoma to James and Bonnie Kee. When he was two years old, the family moved to Texas. Until Doyle was seven years old, the family moved several times: Wichita Falls, Hawley, Spur, Dickinson, and New Deal, Texas. He lived in and around Lubbock, Texas, until he was 14 years old. After two years in Bowie, Texas, he moved with his mother and three sisters to Searcy, Arkansas.

Doyle received his high school diploma from the Harding Academy in Searcy. He received a B.A. from Harding University with a major in Bible and a minor in math. In 1963, he received an M.A. from the Harding Graduate School with emphasis on Old Testament studies. Later, Doyle received the “Diplôme de théologie moderne” (equivalent to a bachelor of divinity in the States) from the University of Geneva, Switzerland.

In 1958, Doyle married Barbara Ethridge. Barbara has a B.A. from Harding in music. They had four children: Mark, David, Bonnie, and Daniel.

Doyle is survived by his wife, Barbara, three of their children and eight grandchildren. Sadly, he was preceded in death by their son, Daniel. He is also survived by one brother and three sisters.

Doyle worked in campaigns in the northeast of the USA while in school. He preached a year for the church in Sitka, Alaska, while working in a hospital. While in school, he preached for the church in West Point, Arkansas. His first full-time preaching ministry was with the church in Clarendon, Arkansas. From 1963 to 1969, Doyle preached for the church in Syracuse, N.Y.

After working in French-speaking campaigns in Montreal and Paris, Doyle and his family moved to Geneva, Switzerland, in January, 1970, to establish the church. On June 13, 2010 the Geneva congregation celebrated its 40th anniversary. The congregation now has four elders and four deacons, has an attendance of about 100 in their own building that will seat about 130 and has five classrooms.

Doyle and Barbara worked a year (1990-91) in the States to inform the brotherhood of needs and opportunities in the French-speaking world and to recruit workers.

After helping organize a campaign in Sherbrooke, Canada in June 1991, Doyle and Barbara returned to Geneva to initiate several new ministries in the context of  French-speaking mission work.

Although Doyle was never one to seek personal acclaim, the extent of his activities through the years is impressive, some of which are listed below. And his work would not have been as effective without the dedicated help of Barbara who, in addition to raising four children, was actively involved in a world-wide French correspondence course program and developed a three-year French Bible study series for children’s classes.

  • Doyle published a small magazine in French from 1970 to 1990.
  • He helped organize and coordinate two International Fellowships of European churches (Strasbourg ’83 and Metz ’87).
  • He edited and published ten books in French on various subjects.
  • He translated and published in color the John Hurt correspondence course.
  • He edited and published in French the “Living Word Commentary” series.
  • He has made many missionary trips to the Muslim northern provinces of French-speaking Cameroon (West Africa) to help the development of churches in that area and to give guidance to national workers. He has also worked in Madagascar, Chad, Togo, Central African Republic and Bénin.
  • Doyle developed the School of the Master (Ecole du Maître), a two-year leadership training program by correspondence, which has been used throughout the French-speaking world.
  • He helped with the establishment of a Center of Biblical Formation for French Africa in Cotonou, Bénin.
  • In Cotonou, Bénin, he helped set up an office of the World Bible School for French-speaking Africa.
  • Doyle has encouraged and assisted in the world-wide distribution of literature in French.
  • For many years Doyle was the contact person for the website published by Roy Davison.
  • Doyle’s most recent overseas trip was to Chad in 2018.