In memoriam: Emeritus missionary Charles Thurman Braughton, 88

Charles Thurman Braughton

Charles Thurman Braughton

Charles Thurman Braughton, an emeritus International Mission Board missionary who shared the gospel among Southeast Asia Affinity Peoples in Malaysia and the Philippines, died Oct. 15, 2019. He was 87.

Braughton was born Aug. 29, 1932, in Altus, Okla., to Virgil and Nora Lee (Scroggins). He graduated from Hot Springs Central High School in 1952 and went on to Ouachita Baptist College, graduating in 1956 with a Bachelor of Music. Braughton served in ministry before and after his overseas service as a music minister, pastor and more. In addition to his ministry, Braughton served in the U.S. Army Reserves for 11 years.

He married Kathleen (Kathie) Blount in 1957, and they had four children: Joel, Dan, Carol Ruth and Sam.

When seeking missionary appointment, Braughton described his first few years as a Christian frustrating and confusing. He became a Christian at the age of 11 but unfortunately, his family dropped out of church a year later. Thanks to a persistent Sunday School teacher, Braughton returned to church around the age of 18. “I had found the oasis and my desert experience was over. I promised God that I would never miss again,” he said.

Both he and Kathie sensed a strong leading to foreign mission work. “His call has been constant and unmistakable. I feel the call is to multitudes, and I can’t be around crowds or individuals without feeling my responsibility to tell them of Jesus,” Braughton said.

Their overseas service began in Malaysia from 1968 to 1977. They spent the remainder of their time on the field in the Philippines, heading back to the U.S. in 1993. While overseas, they led Bible studies, planted churches, and opened up their home as a place of discipleship and encouragement.

Upon retirement, they moved back to his hometown in Arkansas. His family describes his retirement home as a place where Braughton’s cravings for the outdoors were met with a picturesque retreat at the base of a mountain. His family remembers how he loved to take his grandchildren on treks through the woods and share stories on the front porch.

Funeral services were held Oct. 19, 2019, in the Davis-Smith Funeral Home chapel, with burial in the Memorial Gardens. Braughton is survived by his wife of 62 years, Kathie, their children Joel, Carol and Sam and their families.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Thurman’s memory may be made to the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering®, IMB, 2806 Monument Avenue, Richmond, VA 23230.

Read an obituary here.

The Lottie Moon Christmas Offering® is a registered trademark of Woman’s Missionary Union.