|Josephine Marguerite Gonzales Andrews, “Ms. Joe”, died January 29, 1993. She was 100 years old, having been born August 25, 1892. Her death was a quiet release. For several years her mind and spirit had faded and she could longer relate to family and friends.
It was my privilege to meet “Ms. Joe” in 1987 after being appointed to Gonzales United Methodist Church. At that time, her mind was clear and her spirit was strong. She was eager to share from her vast experiences in parsonages and churches throughout Louisiana. She and her husband, The Rev. Benjamin Harris Andrews, Sr., served appointments in Zachary/Slaughter, Amite, Houma/French Mission, Ponchatoula, New Iberia, Haynesville, and the Lake Charles District. She was clear that wherever she and Ben were appointed, that was the place God wanted them to be and where God called them to serve.
From time to time, most of us in ministry find ourselves as recipients of grace from those we are called to serve. As the worship of the previous Sunday was shared with “Ms. Joe,” she began with questions about the welfare of the church and individual members of the congregation. Very special thoughts were with her friends in the “Day Radiance” prayer and study group that she had been a part of. She enjoyed the visits from a few special friends who could converse with her in “Cajun French...” She also asked frequently about my wife, Shirley. “Ms. Joe” had insight into the challenges of ministry from the perspective of one who had been there. There were many times when I was convinced that no one in the congregation understood as well as “Ms. Joe” both the joys and frustrations of ministry. She always wanted to know how I was doing personally. Her love and concern became a source of strength and inspiration for me and others.
“Ms. Joe” is remembered with love by her church family at Gonzales. It is appropriate that she be remembered at this session of the Louisiana Annual Conference. God’s love has been expressed with great clarity to us through the life of a really good person.
Praise God for “Ms. Joe!”
Praise God for her devotion to family and friends!
Praise God for her warmth, her humor, her faith!
` Praise God for Josephine Marguerite Gonzales Andrews!
|Source: Journal Louisiana Conference, 1993; p. 226 By Rev. William M. (Ken) Jacocks|