December 15, 1869 - January 10, 1959
|Rev. Patrick Henry Fontaine closed the book of the record of his earthly life January 10, 1959, but that did not close his ministry. “Their works do follow them.”
I received a letter from him posted in Jackson, Miss,, that same date, in which he said: “I do not remember a day in my life when I did not pray, and years ago I purposed to join the Methodist Church. While the college (Millsaps) was under construction I visited It and purposed to attend it.” ... I was licensed to preach September 12, 1893 . . . Over many years I have continued to contribute to the Board of Finance (Pension), Church Extension, Home and Foreign Missions, and now it amounts to $20,000, and in addition $5,000 to the American Bible Society. So I am very thankful for this $25,000 for the Lord’s work.” . . . “I want you to write it (memoir). Good bye.”
“In Christian love,
P. R. Fontaine
So his ministry will ever continue.
Patrick Henry Fontaine was born December 15, 1869 in the library of the home on Belvedere Plantation owned by his mother, who freed seventy-five slaves in 1865. He was a relative of the famous American Statesman for whom he was named. He was seriously injured at delivery, and a wise mother allowed him to spend much time outdoors in the fields and forests of the large estate. “That gave me a strong body. I loved books and the well-furnished library supplied me with the best, and my parents, both well educated, taught and directed my reading. I was precocious, and I do not remember when I could not read and write.”
He attended the public schools of the neighborhood, and then an academy in Oxford, Miss., then the University of Miississippi, the A. and M. College at Starksville, and Millsaps College.
He was admitted on trial Into the Louisiana Conference December 1896 and appointed to Carralton Avenue, Parker Memorial, Tchopatoulas Street, and Dryads Street churches in succession, in New Orleans, Louisiana.
He was married to Miss Ernestine Doll December 13, 1903, who died December 9, 1942. They left no children. After marriage, he requested to be given an appointment outside of new Orleans. Other charges served were: Covington; Patterson; Wilson; Waterproof; Superintendent of the Louisiana Methodist Orphanage; Mer Rouge; Clinton; Good Pine; Bernice; Eunice; Bienville; Haughton; and Jackson, Louisiana, with Captaincy of the East Louisiana Hospital. He was superannuated November 26, 1928 at the Conference held in Lake Charles, Louisiana.
In 1957 he wrote: “My eighty-seven years (87 yrs.) bear down heavily upon me, but I am content and face the future unafraid.” But alas! At the last he lost his fortitude and endurance, and he gave up the struggle January 10, 1959, and his body was picked up on a street in Jackson, Mississippi. Funeral service was conducted in Jackson, Mississippi by Bishop Franklin, and the body was interred in Pocahuntas cemetery.
|Source: Journal of the Louisiana Conference of the Methodist Church, Pages 207-208, 1959 by Sidney A. Seegers.|