|Anne Bowles Sawyer (September 28, 1904 - May 28, 1985) was born in Paris, Tennessee, the fourth child of eight children born to Ellie Nash and John James Bowles, Jr. When she was nine years old, she moved with her family to East Feliciana Parish. She was an effective schoolteacher, serving primarily in the schools of East Feliciana Parish. In 1945, she married Levi Milton Sawyer, better known as “Tom Sawyer.” He retired from the U.S. Navy after World War II. Soon after their marriage, he answered the call to the ministry. His decision had the full support of Anne. They served churches in Esterwood, Crowley, Sibley, Athens and Epps. In 1965, they retired and lived in Minden, until his death. In each charge where they served they are remembered as a team. With her husband, Anne would attend each of the services on the circuit. She would visit with her pastor husband. They shared together in the demands of the ministry. When a neighbor or church member was in special need, Anne, a master cook, would often take a pie or cake. It was her own special way of conveying love and sympathy. In their chosen “retirement” church of Lakeview UMC, in Minden, they were well loved and dearly remembered. With the onset of Parkinson’s disease in 1977, Ann moved to Baton Rouge to live with her sister.
For Anne, supporting her husband in the itinerate ministry of the United Methodist Church, required considerable adjustment. She was in her forties when they began itinerating the small rural churches of the Louisiana Conference. Prior to entering the ministry, Anne’s life had been marked by stability and permanence of living in one place, the old family farm and massive house in Paris, Tennessee, the spacious “Buckingham” house in Slaughter, the elegant “Erwin” house in Clinton. She had grown accustomed to gracious style of a settled way of life. With marriage and ministry, all this was changed. Each few years, they would move to a new appointment, with new people to come to love and care for, with another parsonage to clean, renovate, make liveable, and decorate with her own distinctive touch. Her devotion to her husband and to his calling adds new meaning to the words of Ruth “for where you go I will go and where you lodge I will 1odge.”
|Source: Journal Louisiana Conference, 1986; p. 286 By J. Philip Woodland|