|Willie B. Sweat, son of the late Neal and Frances Sweat of Beaumont, Texas, was born June 22, 1925, at Magnolia Springs, Texas. He died on March 10, 1981. The service was held at the Trinity United Methodist Church in Baldwin, Louisiana on March 14th at 2 p.m. Bishop J. Kenneth Shamblin brought the message. He was assisted by Dr. Jack Cooke and Reverend Robert L. Norwood. Several ministers of other churches, as well as lay people participated in the service.
Five children were born to Willie and his first wife—Elsie Henderson: Mrs. Patricia Perason, Mrs. Traellas Norton, Willie B. Sweat, Jr., Dwight David Sweat, Don D. Sweat, all of Houston, Texas.
Willie and Ruby Lockett were married November 2, 1965, and two children were born to them: Neal Bernard Sweat and Frances E. Sweat.
Willie served in the U. S. Navy, for a term, where he had twenty-two months of sea duty. He taught in the public schools of St. Mary’s Parish for about ten years.
He started in the United Methodist Ministry as a part-time local Pastor.
He completed his conference studies at Perkins School of Theology, and last year was admitted into the Louisiana Conference as an Associate Member.
He had served the Jones United Methodist Church in Welsh and the Mallalieu United Methodist Church in Jennings for the past five years. He completed a new church plant in Welsh last year and it was consecrated by Bishop J. Kenneth Shamblin on October 19, 1980. This was one of the high moments of his ministry.
Willie loved the United Methodist Church. He loved his people and they loved him. He will be missed by the young and the old. Bishop Shamblin said it so well in his message on the day of the funeral—“We will miss Willie at Annual Conference, and at Pastor’s School. He would always sit on the porch of the dormitory and speak to everyone who came by. There will be a vacancy there this year as we come and go.”
Willie completed his early life gracefully, in love and faith in God.
|Source: Journal Louisiana Conference, 1981, p. 178 By Jack Cooke|