Larry Houck

October 08, 1946 ‒ July 22, 2017

Mount Vernon, Ohio

Larry Houck, age 70, of Mount Vernon went to be with his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on Saturday, July 22, 2017 at the Laurels of Mount Vernon.

He was born on October 8, 1946 in Bellefonte, Pennsylvania to the late James and Pauline (Biddle) Houck. Larry was a graduate of God’s Bible College in Cincinnati, Ohio, class of 1970. He earned his Master of Divinity degree from Asbury Theological Seminary in 1977. He later earned his Doctorate in Religion from Asbury Theological Seminary in 1989. He pastored FM Churches in Erie, New Castle, and Oil City, PA and also at Wesley Chapel UM in Danville. He taught in the religion department at Greenville, Ill College for 6 years and at Mount Vernon Nazarene University for 10 years. He served in missions in Indonesia for 2 years and in the Philippines for 2 years. He was World Missions Director of the FM Church for 6 years.

Larry enjoyed teaching and writing. He published a book in 2015 on Spiritual Formation. He was a member of the North Central Ohio District of the Nazarene Church for the last 12 years. He loved music and played the trumpet and harp. He also enjoyed whittling and working with wood.

He is survived by his wife Sharon (Hughes) Houck; his son Michael James Houck; two brothers, James (Juanita) Houck, Randy Houck; his sister Linda Ziman; and his aunt Joan Houck.

Friends may call on Tuesday, July 25, 2017 from 6-8 PM at the Dowds-Snyder Funeral Home. A service will be held at the Lakeholm Church of the Nazarene on Wednesday beginning at 11 AM with Pastor Ray LaSalle officiating. Burial will follow in Mount Vernon Memorial Gardens Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to: Hospice of Knox County.

To send the family a condolence online visit:

The Dowds-Snyder Funeral Home is honored to serve the family of Larry Houck.

  • I am so sorry for your loss, he was our pastor for a short time, and he married my husband and me 31 years ago. He was such an honest man and told you what and how it was, even if it meant you getting hurt. I was pretty stubborn back then and he had Tony and I doing some things in premarital classes that just made us laugh.. He told Tony that our marriage would last, but he had his hands full with me. I loved that man and his wife. Again, we are sorry to hear of his passing.

  • Dear Sharon,
    Carson and I want to tell you we are so sorry for your loss. May God give you comfort and know that as GBS friends we are thinking of you.
    Carson and Linda (Burton) Scarbrough

  • Sharon,
    Barb and I send our deepest condolences. You are in our thoughts and prayers tonight. Many memories of the two of you from our GBS days.

  • Barb and I are deeply saddened by your loss. We are praying that you will sense the comfort that comes only from our loving Heavenly Father. I have many wonderful memories of out days together on the hilltop.

  • Sharon so sorry for your loss . I had some wonderful times on the road with your hubby . You’re our rhoughts and prayers. Jim Cash

  • Sharon,
    May the LORD be with you and Michael through this difficult time. He has given and blessed you and Larry many, many wonderful times. His life has touched so many that only eternity will reveal. Cherish those memories of your life together.
    He was like a brother to me. We rode bicycles together, sang together, worked youth camps together, and were in each other’s weddings and the list goes on.
    He will certainly be missed. He was a wonderful husband, dad, and pastor. Our prayers are with you.

  • Dear Sharon,
    We are so sorry to learn of Larry’s passing. Heaven has gained a warrior! Lots of precious memories of our GBS days. Keep the faith and we’ll run the race and meet again around the Great White Throne of heaven. May the God of comfort hold you close.
    Love and prayers,
    Gerald & Lois (Starr) Bell

  • I was privileged to be Larry’s roommate at God’s Bible School and College from 1966-67. I also traveled and sang with him in a men’s quartet and the school choir. We kept in contact with each other through the years. I loved his heart for God. My sympathy to Sharon and to all who grieve his loss.

  • So sorry to hear this sad news. He was a wonderful man, and pastor, Our thoights and prayers are with you Shaton!

    From the Wygant and Stanlry family!

  • So sorry to hear this sad news. He was a wonderful man, and pastor, Our thoughts and prayers are with you Sharon!

    From the Wygant and Stanley family!

  • Sharon and Son: Robert and I are very saddened to read of the home going of your dear husband. May you feel the arms of Jesus around daily. We have very warm memories of the days at GBS. God be with you.

  • Larry was my friend and colleague. From traveling with him in the GBS quartet to bringing him to the faculty at Mount Vernon Nazarene University our lives intersected in unforgettable ways. I was blessed and honored to call him my brother in Christ. Our prayers are with Sharon and Michael.

  • I am so sorry for your loss! I think of you often even after all these years. I learned a lot from your New Castle ministry.

  • Our prayers and condolences are sent. We are sorry for your loss. We are celebrating the fact that he is free from suffering and pain, but we are deeply sorry for your loss. We are praying for the family!

  • Praying for your family as you celebrate Larry’s home going. I love the song that says…”and when the battle’s over, we shall wear a crown in the New Jerusalem.” Larry’s battle on earth is over but his celebration in Heaven has just begun…

  • Prayers and condolences for your family. Professor Houck taught me to preach my best sermon every week. This philosophy informs me today not only in preaching, but in many other areas of life. He spoke courageously and his voice still resonates. He is, and will be, dearly missed.

  • Sharon,
    I am so very sorry for your loss. Randy and I have fond memories of spending time with you and Larry while we were both in the Oil City Conference. Our prayers and love are with you.

  • Dr. Houck was a good man and a wonderful teacher. We had religion professors who taught us biblical timelines, church history, and how to exegete the scripture, but Dr. Houck reminded us that our relationship with God would reflect in every area of our lives, ministries, and congregations. The importance of spiritual health never got lost in the syallabus or class lecture. His eyes were firmly on Jesus, and he taught us (through the example of his life and character) to do the same. I am proud to have been his student, and thankful for the lessons learned. My deepest condolences to the Houck family and all who love him.

  • Sharon and family, our prayers are with you and your family. Larry was a great friend and we were blessed to know him. Daryl and Ethel Adams

  • So sorry Aunt Sharon, and cousin Michael for your loss. I can remember when I was a kid, Uncle Larry’s quirky imitation of Donald Duck. Always made me laugh. He helped me with my “identity crisis” when I was a teen. Maybe that is how I became part of the Nazarene Church? I know that he would be proud of me since I have a close relationship with Jesus Christ. It takes a strong person of faith to go on as long as he did. I admire him for that. He was always in my thoughts and prayers. Now he finally got to meet our Lord and Savior. God bless both of you.


    Tereena (Terri)

  • Sharon,
    We are so sorry for your loss. We remember some special times at GBS! We are praying for you and your family.
    Paul and Judy (Voss) Shelton

  • My prayers and sympathy are with you Sharon and your family. Many GBS memories. May our Lord comfort you – until ‘we meet again’ in Heaven!

  • Dear Sharon,
    I was deeply saddened to learn of your loss. Larry was a good friend. I will cherish the years we worked together at the Free Methodist World Ministries Center. Though I regret not making it to Mt Vernon to visit you and Larry, I did have contacts who would keep me posted on his fine work at Mt Vernon. He was a very fine man. Heaven is richer.

    Tim Beuthin

  • Sharon, it’s been years since Merritt and I have seen you and Larry. Larry was a a true man of God. So sorry for you and your sons loss. Take one day at a time, God will be by your side very step of this journey. Will be praying for you.

  • Dear Sharon and Michael:
    Larry left a legacy of commitment to his Master and Savior through his leadership, teaching, mission ministry, preaching and writing. Our time at the WMC in Indianapolis, combined with our hunting trips to Ripley County, linger in my cherished memories. Sharon, you have shown incredible grace, love and care in providing such faithful care for your husband. “Until death do us part” was not said or performed casually. You have been a model of grace over the long haul. We are so glad we stopped for our visit on the way back from RWC a couple of years ago. You are in our prayers that God will give you his special peace and grace as you adjust to life minus a husband and Dad who is now rejoicing in the presence of Jesus. Love and prayers, John and Ann V. V.

  • Dear Sharon and Michael and family,

    Larry is a consistent Christian and friend. He always believed in me and my ministry and encouraged me more strongly than anyone I have known. He had a great faith and strong intellect that did not lead to arrogance but to entire devotion to God. I try to live up to his example. I am so grateful for having known him! Thank you for your friendship in Christ. My family and I am praying for you all.

  • I write in memory of my older brother Larry, who followed God’s calling from his teenage years. Guided by his biblical beliefs , he taught God’s word his entire career. Always by his side was his lovely wife, Sharon. Larry’s faith never seemed to falter even during the 5+ incredibly difficult years. Whenever the doctors told him he had only months on this earth, Larry said he had things to do, then he got down on his knees!
    Now that Larry must be done here, may you rest with your Savior now in Heaven, Brother.
    Our thoughts and prayers are now with you, Sharon and Michael. May only happy memories now bring you comfort.
    Linda and Shelly

  • Sharon and Michael our prayers are with you at this time . Glad we were able to spend some time with you a few weeks ago. Larry was a gracious and warm hearted friend who had always the heart of a pastor. I remember his gentle guidance in a small group we co-led a few years ago on campus.

  • In memory of my older brother Larry who followed God’s calling from his teenage years. Guided by his biblical beliefs, he then for this entire career, taught the gospel. Always by his side, was his lovely wife Sharon. Larry’s faith during the last 5+ incredibly difficult years never seemed to falter. Whenever the doctors had told him he had only months to live, his response was that he had things to “finish”, and prayer chains were arranged.
    May you now rest in glory with your Savior, Larry.
    Our thoughts and prayers are as always with you Sharon and Michael. May only cherished good memories now bring you comfort.
    Linda and Shelly

  • Sharon and Michael,
    We are sorry we cannot all be with you during this difficult time. We are thinking of you and sending you strength thru prayer and family love…. Tom, Donna, Meagan, Jenna, Kaitlin, Mitch and Ezekiel.

  • Dear Sharon and Michael, Barb and I were saddened to hear the news of Dr. Houck’s passing but we realize he is home with his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! Please know that Dr. Houck had a tremendous impact on my life! Barb and I are still pastoring the Hillsboro Free Methodist Church and this month we celebrate our 30th year here. Larry poured himself into many of us young pastors at Greenville College and I am who I am today largely due to his teaching and training! I thank God for the sacrifice and commitment you guys made at GC. Larry will be deeply missed and I long to worship with him around the Throne of God!! May the God of all comfort be near to you as you lean upon Him! We are praying for you! Randy and Barb Sands

  • Sharon….so sorry to hear of Larry’s passing. I just received word and my heart was saddened. Though Heaven rejoices and we sing “Victory In Jesus” yet we do grieve. We enjoyed our time in Wilmore with you many years ago. Larry and I spent a significant amount of time enjoying each others company and growing in the understanding of our spiritual journey.

    I will always remember the sign Larry had in his office, “Larry can’t, but God and Larry can!” Well…through all these years God and Larry did. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

    Tom and Darlene Stroup

  • I express the sadness of the loss of my friend and colleague. I have known Larry since 1968 as a teacher at GBS and as a trustee at MVNU from 1994 to 2005. I have served as a pastor for 38 years and then taught for 11 at IWU. Larry was a wonderful blessing to me in whatever he did. I will continue to pray for Sharon and the family.

    Norman K. Phillips

  • My heart goes out to the family. Larry was a wonderful minister at my church. Prayers for friends and family.