MICHAEL D. CORRIGAN
SEPTEMBER 17, 1932 – JULY 14, 2011
Michael D. Corrigan, Jr. was born to Ruby and Michael D. Corrigan, Sr. on September 17, 1932 in Maryville, Tennessee; the first of their eleven children. He attended schools in Tennessee and California. Mike’s parents provided a godly example of Bible study centered on God’s amazing grace and love. In his late teens, while in prayer he saw a vision of Jesus. He said: “I asked Jesus to save me and guide my life.” After his conversion, he served in the U. S. Air Force, 1951 – 1955.
While stationed at Keesler Air Force Base, Biloxi, Mississippi, Mike attended a summer retreat. At the Methodist campground that beautiful morning—July 3, 1953—he met a young lady, Retha Burnett of Baton Rouge, Louisiana. And, as they say “the rest is history.” They were married on October 3, 1953.
Pastor and friend, Rev. A. Jerome Cain of Istrouma Methodist, Baton Rouge, took a personal interest in Mike. He sang in the Chancel Choir and his Sunday School class kept growing till there was only standing room. At this time, Mike sensed God’s call into ministry. Under Rev. Cain’s guidance, Mike became a student-pastor at Loranger, Cooper’s Chapel, 1957. While pastoring Carpenter’s Chapel and Meadow’s Chapel, Mike graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree LSU, 1959. Also, during his first year at Perkins School of Theology, Dallas, Mike served as student-pastor, Valley View Methodist Church, 1959-1961.
At this point, Mike decided to pursue a career in Law. He received a Juris Doctorate, UCLA, Law School, 1964, and practiced law from 1965 to 1994. While still practicing law, Mike and Retha attended Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, California, graduating with a Master of Divinity degree, 1993. While active in Church and Disciple Bible Study classes for many years, Mike once again sensed God’s irresistible call on his life; this time together with Retha.
Thus, in the Spring of 1994, coming full-circle, they met with pastor-friend Rev. A. Jerome Cain, who welcomed them with open arms to the Louisiana Conference. They served as a pastoral-couple in the Alexandria District: Colfax, Boyce, Montgomery and Mt. Zion from 1994 – 1997; the Monroe District: Memorial, Bastrop; Mer Rouge, Oak Ridge until Mike’s heart condition worsened. Mike was placed on Disability Leave in 1998, moved to Coushatta in 2000 and retired in 2003.
Mike passed away July 14, 2011. His Memorial Service was held July 20, 2011 at First United Methodist Church, Coushatta, conducted by Pastor Rev. John Kavanaugh, assisted by our family friend, Rev. Tom Smith, Open Door Fellowship, Coushatta. Mike’s favorite hymns were included in his Memorial Service. He not only loved to sing them at Church, but also with family gathered around the keyboard: “How Great Thou Art,” “Great is Thy Faithfulness,” and “Amazing Grace.” Mike’s life has touched so many lives. As one former member told us at Mike’s Memorial Service: Mike’s preaching “grabbed me.” As a result, he became a fulltime Lay-Speaker filling pulpits almost every Sunday.
Mike is predeceased by both parents and one sister. He is survived by five sisters and four brothers. Mike is survived by his beloved wife, Retha, three wonderful children and their spouses, eight grandchildren, and one great-grandchild. As his wife, I will always cherish Mike as my loving, faithful husband, devoted father to our children and awesome Papa to our grandchildren. Regarding Mike, we all agree on this: “We can’t wait to see you again!”
Mike’s favorite Scripture: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but shall have eternal life” (John 3:16). Mike’s last words were spoken with a broad smile, arms uplifted in praise to God for His amazing grace and love: “I am loved” and “I want to pastor.”