Pastor Donald “Donnie” Otto Shaffer Jr., age 66, of Central, Louisiana, went home to be with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on April 25, 2023, en route to minister in Tokyo, Japan.
Donnie was born on December 18, 1956, to Donald Otto Shaffer Sr. and Marion “Faye” Annison Shaffer in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He spent his childhood moving from one military base to the next. He excelled in school, graduated from Zachary High School, and worked as a plumber and pipefitter. He married the love of his life, Sue, on September 23, 1978. He accepted Jesus as his Lord and Savior in August of 1984. He became an ordained minister in 1986 and received a Degree in Ministry from Ministers Training Institute in 1991. He earned a Bachelors of Theological Studies through Vision Intentional University in 2005 and went on to earn a Masters of Arts in Leadership through Vision Intentional University in 2020.
In January of 1992, he and his young family answered God’s call to the mission field of Brazil. They joined a mission effort called Project Amazon, or PAZ, which has now planted over 500 churches across the Amazon basin. After learning the Portuguese language in just a few short months, he began to translate the entire MTI School of Ministry curriculum into Portuguese. His mission was to train Brazilian leaders in order for them to spread the Gospel throughout all of Brazil and the world. After eleven fulfilling years there, he and his family returned to Central, Louisiana in August of 2002 to work with Rev. Jim Clark, founder of MTI School of Ministry, which is now named MTI Bible College. After Rev. Clark’s retirement, Donnie was chosen to succeed him as president of the school. Under his leadership, the school curriculum has been translated into four languages other than English and has been taught in ten other countries across South America, Africa, and Asia. In May of 2007, he and his wife founded and faithfully pastored Central Church in Central, Louisiana.
He will be remembered for his burning passion for Christ, incomparable gift for teaching the Word of God, unbounded enthusiasm for life, and unconditional love for his family and others. His ministerial legacy will continue through his family, former students, church family, and the lives of countless others whom he greatly impacted.
He is survived by his devoted wife of 44 years, Sandra “Sue” Shaffer; son Joshua Shaffer and his wife Gloria; son Daniel and his wife Brooke; son Michael and his wife Faith; daughter Cristiana McKey and her husband Cale; grandchildren Zahara Shaffer, Jolene Shaffer, Elijah Shaffer, Hadassah Shaffer, Gabriella Shaffer, Judah Shaffer, Isaiah Shaffer, and Zariah Shaffer; mother Marion “Faye” Shaffer; sister Jen Andrews and; brother John Shaffer; as well as many beloved cousins, nieces, nephews, and dear friends.
He was preceded in death by his father, Donald Otto Shaffer, Sr., and his sister, Summer Savoy.
Visitation will be held at The Rock Church in Zachary, Louisiana on Saturday, May 6, 2023 from 9:00 a.m. until 11:00 a.m. The funeral service will begin at 11:00 a.m. Graveside service will follow at Hillcrest Cemetery in Norwood, Louisiana at 1:00 p.m. Pallbearers will be Josh Shaffer, Daniel Shaffer, Michael Shaffer, Cale McKey, Mateus Coimbra, Esau Wright, David Hawkins, and Eduardo Nascimento.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his honor to MTI School of Ministry to help continue the work to which he devoted his life. Checks may be made to “MTI School of Ministry” and mailed to 11681 Greenwell Springs Port Hudson Rd. Zachary, LA 70791. You may also contribute via PayPal to “MTI School of Ministry.”