Morris Proctor of MP Seminars, the authorized Logos trainer, entered into glory on Monday, January 23, after a brief illness.
Over the last quarter century, Morris trained thousands of people to use Logos for ministry and deep study of the Word through his Camp Logos seminars, webinars, online courses, and other resources at MP Seminars. Back in 2007, Morris shared about how he got started with Logos:
I became a disciple of Jesus Christ and teacher of his Word through the personal ministry of my good friend and bestselling author Robert Morgan. In the early eighties, Rob began instilling in me a love for the Bible and Christian books as well as a desire to study and teach Scripture effectively. I, therefore, dutifully set out to build my personal library of print books. I spent years and thousands of dollars securing many needed resources.
As I developed into a pastor-teacher I spent countless hours in study and sermon preparation. When the personal computer age hit, I was reluctant to enter the electronic world, choosing rather to stay in my comfort zone of pen and paper.
In the late nineties, a friend bought me a copy of Logos Bible Software. Not owning or knowing how to use a computer, the software remained in the box. Finally, another friend loaned me a computer, loaded the software, and instructed me to become proficient with both the software and a computer “for my own good.”
After a week of reading the Logos Bible Software Users Guide and “hunting and pecking” around the keyboard, I actually started studying the Bible electronically. I was shocked to discover the profound impact this new method of study had on my biblical research and sermon preparation.
The world of Logos Bible Software allowed me to study and prepare sermons both more quickly and effectively. I introduced my friends to the software and began teaching them how to use it. I then began putting my software teaching outlines into manual form to develop the first Quick Reference Training Manual.
Through the encouragement of friends, I contacted the leadership at Logos Research Systems informing them of my instructional classes for their software and my desire to partner with them to train their users. They invited me to their Oak Harbor, WA, headquarters in 1998 to conduct the national Camp Logos. After the seminar, I shared my vision to take this training around the country from church to church, equipping people to effectively use Logos Bible Software. The Logos leadership enthusiastically agreed.
In the fall of 1998, the regional Camp Logos hit the road. We named this new training endeavor Morris Proctor Seminars. For nearly ten years, my wife Cindy and I, along with some faithful assistants, have conducted hundreds of hands-on training seminars around the country and now even around the world, as the Logos family spreads internationally. In addition to the live training seminars, we produce videos on CD and DVD, print manuals, and miscellaneous training materials all designed to help Logos users get the most out of their software in 2001.
As the seminar demands increased, I stepped back from pastoring a church to devote full time to training Logos users. I still, however, maintain a very active preaching and teaching schedule which keeps me in the Bible and Logos Bible Software on a daily basis for my personal use. Before I am a trainer, first and foremost I am a student of the Word and user of the software myself.
Morris was never an employee of Logos, but he was a close partner with us for twenty-five years and a good friend and encourager to many on our team. His service will be on Friday, January 27, at Stonebridge Bible Church in Brentwood, Tennessee, with a visitation from 10:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. (CST) and memorial at 2:00 p.m. (CST). (Live stream info here.)
What follows are some personal thoughts and reflections from some of the Logos team.
Bob Pritchett, Logos Co-founder and Board Member
Morris Proctor was a teacher of teachers.
For more than twenty-five years, he was a beloved part of the Logos family, training thousands of pastors on Logos Bible Software. Morris brought his own experience as a pastor to his training, teaching a passion for the Word as well as teaching how to use the software.
We are heartbroken to lose Morris and mourn with his family for this loss at what can only feel like too young an age.
Morris invested decades in training pastors and Bible students to use Logos Bible Software. He believed in Logos—and invested his time and energy and resources in Logos—back in the 1990s when we were a small business with an uncertain future. Over the years, he’s been an advisor, an advocate, an investor, and a wonderful friend. His patience and kindness were a model and inspiration to me.
Phil Gons, Logos Chief Product Officer
It’s difficult to overstate the impact that Morris Proctor, or Moe as many of us called him, had on the spread of Logos over the last twenty-five-plus years. Countless pastors are indebted to Moe for his masterful way of making the power of Logos accessible to everyone.
He was much more than an incredibly gifted teacher and trainer. He was an unwavering advocate for the user, a steady source of feedback and ideas from the many thousands he was training and interacting with. I looked forward to our bi-weekly calls to talk about what he was hearing from users and what we were planning for the product. He was a dear friend to many of us who’ve been a part of Logos for years. We’ll miss him dearly and remember him often.
Scott Lindsey, Logos Executive Director of Ministry Relations
Back when I joined Logos in 1997, we only did a once-yearly training led by programmers in Oak Harbor, Washington. The training was for faithful fans who were primarily pastors.
Dale Pritchett got connected to a Nashville pastor named Morris who took the challenge to figure out every crevice of Logos. Someone bought him a computer and Logos and told him he needed to figure out how to use this tool. He wasn’t a techie, but that was one of Morris’s greatest gifts, to the church, especially pastors—he didn’t speak in ones and zeroes. He was a pastor who loved the Bible and helping those become better and more efficient in their studies.
Morris rose to the challenge of translating the power of Logos into the language of pastors who needed to study and write sermons. So, he mastered Logos, and we invited him to teach at our annual training in 1999. I was part of the training, and Morris and I hit it off immediately. That night—it was the first official Camp Logos with Morris—we went to dinner and were blown away at the commitment people had to Logos. They were literally flying cross country, getting plane tickets and hotels, and some were bringing their spouses. We thought, wow, people must really love Logos to commit like that. So we started thinking, what if we took this show on the road? What if we did this in Houston, DC, and Chicago?
I wrote the Camp Logos business plan and presented it to Dale the next Monday, and the proposal was that Morris would be the trainer and I’d be the commercial guy during breaks and the customer support who ran around the room helping people who were having difficulty following. Dale said, “Sure, you can go for it, but if it doesn’t work just know that I’ll need to fill your position.” But Morris and I knew it would work because there were so many pastors who hadn’t tapped a tenth of the potential of Logos.
Our first event was in Houston, and forty to fifty pastors showed up for the two-day event. We advertised by postcards back then—this was pre-email. It was a huge success, people loved it because they learned how to use Logos and bought a bunch of other resources because they knew how to use it. Remember, these are the days when the biggest Logos library was seventy-five books!
At the height of the Camp Logos years, we were doing twenty to thirty events a year all over the country. We were equipping the church, primarily pastors, but soon everyday Christians started showing up. They didn’t all have laptops, so many lugged in massively heavy towers and CRTs to Camp Logos. That was the level of commitment people had to learning this tool.
We did that until we started growing, and we started getting invited to do mini-camps at conferences. So Morris and I started aligning on key events and conferences. One night, Morris got invited to present in front of everyone at a Jack Hayford pastors event, and I remember sitting in the front row and thinking, “There’s no way I could do that. How in the world is Morris up there in front of a thousand people?” When Morris got done, the Logos booth flooded with people, because back then people didn’t know what Logos was. This was the birth of Ministry Relations and presenting at key conferences throughout the country.
That launched another phase of what we were doing. We were still doing the camp, but now conferences and key ministries were asking us to train their staff. Around 2002–2004, we couldn’t do both anymore, so we handed the training side (what became MP Seminars) to Morris and his wife Cindy, and I started presenting at events with Morris’s tutelage, training, and encouragement.
After that, Morris was our unofficial official trainer. Morris was never on payroll, but training was his thing that we partnered with him on, because in those days training was essential. Morris was a master of bringing all the tech of Logos to the lay/pastoral level.
We really needed Morris’s perspective on our software, because one of the things that happens with companies is we think we know what people need or want or how they use the software. Having Morris’s perspective of people out there in the real world, talking with real users, was huge for us. Logos wasn’t like it is now—it wasn’t automated with Guides and Factbook. What you can do now with one click was twenty steps back then, and if you didn’t know all twenty steps, you weren’t going anywhere. Morris was the guy who translated Logos for everyday people. His training was so essential for our growth and getting people to use Logos.
Over the years, we were disconnected, not in our friendship or love for each other, but after years of doing work in parallel together, we were each doing our separate thing. But he called me his little brother; he was my big brother. What used to be three to four years of being inseparable was now a phone call every two or three months to catch up on each other’s lives and reminisce about the good ol’ days.
One unique thing about Morris is that, because Logos is about the Bible, he had his foot in all parts of the church, across racial and doctrinal divides. They all loved him because Morris was about the Scripture, not theological nuance. For him, it was, “How can I help people study the Bible better and preach the Bible better and see Jesus more clearly?” Everyone loved him. Losing Morris is a huge loss.
Derek Schrock, Logos Ambassador Program Manager
Anyone who has attended Camp Logos or seen one of his training videos knows how gifted of a teacher and communicator Morris was. He could have used his ability to train and teach in many ways, but he chose to have a laser-sharp focus on helping others study God’s Word through Logos.
Through my years of partnering with Morris at Logos, he made clear over and over how he was driven by his passion to serve the church by helping others study God’s Word. And if you talk to anyone who went to Camp Logos or subscribed to MPSeminars.com, you’ll know he was more than successful at that.
Morris was a role model to me through his work ethic, godly character, and drive for serving the church. While I’m comforted knowing he is at peace with our Savior, my prayers go out for his family and the MP Seminars team.
Bill Nienhuis, formerly with Logos publisher relations
I remember a day back in the nineties when a Logos Bible Software user manual written by a retired pastor named Morris Proctor showed up in the mail unexpectedly. We didn’t know him, and we weren’t looking for an outsider to write a user manual for us, but when we saw what Morris prepared, we knew right away we needed to get to know him.
That moment led to decades of close partnership with Moe. I loved working with him. No matter if it was a phone call update about the latest books coming to Logos or a long meal together at Uncle Bud’s in Nashville, Moe gave 100 percent of his attention to you. He was not only a talented software trainer, he was a dear friend with a deep faith in the Lord. While I am going to miss him today, I am happy that he’s now seeing his redeemer face to face, and someday I look forward to joining him in heaven.