November 22, 1862 - November 22, 1946
|James Henry Lewis was born in Winnfield, Louisiana, November 22, 1862, and passed to his reward on November 22, 1946. Thus ended eighty-four years, filled with varied experiences. His life was one of service, to his family, his Church and his God. His was a rich Christian experience from early childhood until the end of his days.
The most of his life was spent in Winn Parish, where he had his home at the time of his death. He had a wide circle of friends in this part of the State, and had the confidence of those who knew him.
On September 24th, 1885, he was married to Miss Alice Smith, of Winn Parish. To them were born twelve children, five of whom survive him. He is also survived by his wife, twenty-six grand-children, twenty-eight great-grandchildren, and two great-great-grandchildren.
Brother Lewis was converted and joined the Pleasant Hill Methodist Church in early life. The new experience gave him an urge to work for the Master, and soon he was called upon to fill the various offices of the Church. He served as Class Leader, Steward, Sunday school superintendent, and was several times delegate to the Annual Conference. He felt a higher call to service in the Kingdom of his Lord, and in 1905 he was licensed to preach in the Winnfield Methodist Church. He served for a time as local preacher, and in 1909 was admitted into the membership of the Louisiana Conference of the former Methodist Protestant Church and ordained an elder. He served various Churches in the bounds of his Conference, and as Missionary-Evangelist for the Conference. The outstanding pastorate of his ministry was sixteen years given to the South Winnfield Church. He did a great deal of evangelistic work and was used of the Lord to win many souls to the Master.
He was the leader in establishing Lewis Chapel, a church that has been a blessing to many in the community where he lived. Under the influence of this church several young men were called to preach. His interest in those who entered the ministry under his influence was very keen. He took great delight in telling about his “preacher boys.”
Because of failing health he was forced to take the retired relation in October 1985. Though he suffered a great deal he never lost interest in the work of the Church. He preached as often as health would permit. He did a great deal of personal work during his days of retirement, and even in his last illness, no one ever came in that he did not talk to them about their spiritual interest.
I was the writer’s privilege to know Brother Lewis only one year, the last year of his life. It was always a blessing to be in his presence because of his radiant personality and his great faith. To him Heaven was very real, and he talked about his death as if it was the one great experience to which he was looking forward with joy. He said many times, “It will be better over there because the Savior has prepared a place for his children.”
There is no death f or those who are the Lord’s
But just a passing through the gates to be
Eternally with Him, the Living Word.
Oh, radiant thought, to live with Thee,
Our Savior and our Lord.
|Source: Journal of the Louisiana Conference of the Methodist Church, Pages 110-111, 1947 by A. D. George.|