|To God be the glory for the things He has done for us through the life and work of William Robert London, Jr., who gave unselfishly of himself for forty-five years proclaiming the “Good News of the Gospel.”
“Bill,” as he was fondly called by many, was born July 12, 1921 in Alexandria, Louisiana. He was the son of the late Reverend William R. London and Susie Young London. His educational training was very extensive. His high school training was at Gilbert Academy and McDonogh #35. He earned his B.A. degree from Clark College in Atlanta, Georgia; Master of Divinity from Gammon Theological Seminary; M.A. in Social Work from Atlanta University. He did further study at Illinois Wesleyan University, Tulane University, Claremont School of Religion and numerous professional seminars and workshops across the nation
He married the former Snowdry Prothro of Atlanta, Georgia on April 11, 1948. Their marriage was blessed with two lovely daughters, Maxine and Letitia. He was ordained as a Deacon in The Methodist Church on October 26, 1941 and an Elder on October 21, 1945. His ministry reflected his unfailing courage, his firm hope and his determination to do “His Master’s Will.” He steadfastly walked the highway of strong and high endeavors wherever he served. He began his ministry at St. Mark Church in Augusta, Georgia. His father’s desire to have him serve his home conference influenced him to return to Louisiana where he rendered outstanding service.
Churches he served in Louisiana were Newman, St. Paul, Boynton, Peck, Peoples and Grace. In addition, he served as superintendent of the New Iberia District and the New Orleans District B, Executive Director, Peoples Center in New Orleans and was first director of New Orleans Metropolitan Ministries. He was very active on many boards and agencies of the conference, especially Conference Board of Trustees, Board of Directors of Lafon Home and Gulfside Assembly. He was a very valuable member of the Committee on Inter-Conference Relations which planned for merger of Louisiana Conference A and Conference B. Under his leadership, two church edifices were constructed - Peck in 1957 and Mallalieu (St. Martinville) in 1967. He successfully conducted fund-raising activities, which made possible the renovation of Peoples Center, St. Paul and Trinity (Baldwin) Churches.
However, his greatest contribution across the years was his service to mankind. All of his life centered around aiding in the development of the total person (children, youth, and adults). He knew he had to develop self-esteem and human dignity, in his work of “saving souls.” This attribute was evident in his work with Boy and Girl Scouts, delinquents, senior citizens and all phases of human life. His work at Peck Church, where the membership doubled, is a living testimony of his dedication. He has received many honors for his devotion and commitment from city officials, the mayor, civic, social and fraternal organizations and ecumenical affiliations.
On Sunday, October 26, 1986, the earthly life of William R. London, Jr. ended after 45 years of good and faithful service. His immediate survivors are his wife, Snowdry P. London; his mother, Susie Y. London; two daughters, Maxine L. Stewart and Letitia A. Shakir; five grandchildren, Allison B. and Ashley B. Stewart, Najah, Ahmad and Khadijah Shakir; two sons-in-law, Perry P. Stewart and Nasir Shakir.
Now the battle day is past
Now upon the farthest shore
Lands the voyager at last
Father in thy gracious keeping
Leave we now thy servant sleeping.”
|Source: Journal Louisiana Conference, 1987; p. 318-320 By J. Vernita Booker|