FROM YOUR PASTOR’S HEART January 22, 2024
Understandably, what is on my heart today are the sweet memories of the many good times shared with our dear Cordova Baptist family member, Mrs. Mary Rogers. As you probably know, she went to be with the Lord and her loved ones this past Sunday afternoon, after two weeks in the hospital battling with cancer. In her last days, I had the privilege of holding those precious hands that have toiled so faithfully for God, His Church and her family for so many years.
Mary was a devoted wife to her beloved husband, Barry, for 58 years. She was a loving mother to her daughter, Gwen, who died of cancer at the age of seven, and her son, Kevin, who has compassionately cared for her and his father during these hard days. At CBC, Mary was a dedicated teacher to both children and adults; a gracious hostess to groups meeting in her home; a talented decorator at holiday seasons; and, a trusted leader who served in various positions, including the Pastor Search Committee who brought the Muston clan here 31 years ago.
We would all agree that Mary was a great cook. She was instrumental in her Pastor growing in many ways, including around my waistline. At our Thanksgiving dinners, her dressing was always a big hit. I must confess that I love turkey and dressing. My mother made hers different from my mother-in-law, but I loved both of them. My wife followed her mother’s recipe for many years, but at one point was rethinking how she would do it. It was at that moment that I suggested she try making Mary’s dressing! Now you know what happened to my hair! Yet, there was no loss of love between these two dear ladies. I am thankful that the Lord and her family allowed Sandy and Mary to share some precious time together in her final days, as Sandy stayed with her in the hospital. I am also grateful to Pat Creech for helping out.
I could write a book about the impact that this sweet lady has had on my life, but I will wrap this up with one funny story. Barry, Mary and I were standing in the Cordova Cemetery, prior to a graveside service I was conducting. Mary made the comment: “Brother Jim, you have put a lot of people out here, haven’t you?” I quickly corrected her, by saying: “Mary, I have laid a lot of people to rest here, but I didn’t PUT any of them here.” After watching her struggle in the hospital, it will be my privilege to lay her body to rest in the Cordova Cemetery, where we will one day be neighbors. Yet, my greatest joy comes in knowing that her soul is at peace in Heaven with Jesus, where we will be neighbors forever! One of the last things she said to me was, “We will see each other again.” To which I added: “For eternity!” Rest in peace, sweet Mary!
Serving in love,