September 13, 1879 - 1941
|Mrs. Mary Ellon Purdue, widely known and beloved for her religious and humanitarian work, died at her home on the Mount of Blessings, Atlanta, Texas, Wednesday night, June 18, 1941. Not as a grim monster, or a sudden, destructive tragedy, but with the gentleness of an angel’s hand, came the reaper and her spirit was borne to realms eternal.
Mrs. Perdue was born September 13, 1879, in Shreveport, La., near the present site of the First Methodist Church. She moved to Cass County when a child. She was married to James Madison Perdue, in 1891, and to this union were given two cone: Allen, who preceded her in death, and Clifford F. Perdue, surviving. She lost her husband in comparative youth, in a tragic engineering accident.
Mrs. Perdue began her ministry as an evangelistic singer with the Rev. Mary E. Bartlett, with whom the gospel message of full salvation was carried to the valleys and highlands of Louisiana. For seventeen years, the two “Mary’s” continued as co-workers, in an unbroken fellowship.
She was admitted to the Methodist Protestant Conference in 1904, and was ordained in 1906, at the Courtland Methodist Church. For thirty-seven years she proclaimed the gospel of Christ to the saving of many souls. She was pastor of churches in Northeast Louisiana, South Arkansas, and East Texas. While doing her work of evangelism, she also served the former Methodist Protestant church in Jonesboro, La., as pastor for eighteen years. She was a member of two General Conferences of her church. Was super-annuated in 1940, and was supply-pastor of the Munnerlyn Chapel Church, near Ida, Louisiana, at the time of her death.
She served as Secretary of the former Methodist Protestant Conference of Louisiana, for twenty-one years.
In addition to her work as pastor-evangelist, she, in recent years founded the Mt. of Blessings Camp, at Atlanta, Texas, which has continued annually.
Her ministry to the thousands has been one of solace and comfort, winning the respect and friendship of all. She has ministered to humanity at their worst and at their best. In the deepest morrow, when the crepe was on the door, they called her. She was as God’s angel to them, the pastor of them all. In distressing illness or in accident sudden and tragic, the presence of Mary Perdue at their side was the most natural and the most consoling event of the day.
This “Mary” did not have a chance to be last at the Cross of Christ, but she will be among the first in the morning of the Resurrection, and many shall arise in that day and call her blessed
|Source: Journal of the Louisiana Conference of the Methodist Church, Pages 89-90, 1941 by I. L. Yeager.|