My namesake, Barbara E. White celebrated her 60th Birthday at Gray’s Child Care Development Center. Family and friends from everywhere came out to salute the evangelist, celebrating “60 Years of Life-40 Years of Service.”
White was joined by her children: Adonis, Tykesha White, Kimberly, Perry, and LeCrystal Griffin; her, grandson, Travis Griffin Jr. and grand-daughter, Antonia Perry. Her dad, Edgar Waddell, her brother, Edgar Waddell III, her aunts, Gasper Waddle, Corrine Johnson, Beverly Waddle, Thelma Weddle, and Jeffie White.
Tyler Green Jr. opened the celebrations with the beats of his drum. It was like a wedding party entrance. The guest followed the drummer, and the guest of honor escorted by her son and grandson entered the hall in celebration of her grand birthday.
The elders were asked permission to enter, the eldest person there was 90 years-old and all other elder was asked to stand.
There was libation saluting all those who have gone before us and planted the seeds of continued life to grow strong fruit for the future. There was a Bible proverb, complimented by an African proverb.
All played the game, what do you really know about Barbara E. White and we found out a lot about Barbara E. White, Holla!
It was a family day of celebration as her godson, Elder Steve Robertson and goddaughter, Rolunda Dixon took to the reins as master of ceremonies.
There was invocation and a very nice dinner. After dinner there was a video presentation of the life and times of Barbara E. White.
DeShawn Ewing performed story telling piece, spelling out the life of the queen in a poem called Rarity.
Rosetta Carr tributed Barbara with a solo of her favorite song, “Bless her Today” followed by her oldest daughter, Kimberly who led with proclamations from all branches of government, community presentations and others presentations of life flowers were presented to Barbara.
Mr. James Beckum of the Beckum/Stapleton Little League Baseball presented Barbara a beautiful tribute. Women from the religious sector, Northwest Jurisdiction of Wisconsin Evangelists also sang her praise. The tributes were too numerous to mention.
Everyone turning 60 years-old was asked to stand, no one really wanted to claim 60, yet. Holla! Bridget Allen sang a solo and rocked the house. Tributes and roast were too funny.
Many of her friends really roasted and toasted her like Evelyn Brown who shared with us her kindness, and humbleness. Elder Shawn Tatum talked about her “worker spirit” and her ability to get things done.
They went from her childhood days, to Union Church the first church she attended to her present church, Ebenezer Missionary where her presence is really felt by everyone including the pastor. Holla!
In their expressions, the common thread on the life and times of Barbara E. White was her daring to be different, her daring to make a difference, her humbleness, her compassion and her loyalty.
There was a special family roast and toast of love. Some called her a beautiful child of God who always walks in His spirit.
Barbara’s children did a thank you introduction of the honoree. Many thanked God for the God in her.
Her grandson says she tells him to always be a man with character, principles and integrity, while her grand-daughter praised her for always pushing them to do better in life.
“I have known her for 41 years,” her son said as laughter erupted in the room. “She raised four children on her own and she did the best she could and she has worked hard.”
When Pastor Saffold of Ebenzer spoke, he talked of the importance of family and church to Barbara.
In 1979 she found her way to the church where I was the pastor and she has been there every since,” he said. “She has done everything that one can do in a church. When she came she planted herself and dug in. She teaches Sunday school every. She has earned the right to be respected in the manner in which ya’ll have chose to honor this evening.”
When the honoree took to the podium, she thanked all for coming. She acknowledged many of her friends for coming, including Mary Long from Kansas City who is like her sister.
in the many hats that she wears, she also wears one of counselor. Barbara is also a marriage counselor and she talked of the importance of counseling before marriage.
She in turn introduced MCJ Editor Tom Mitchell and his wife, Clarene, who was the first couple to get married after attending her counseling workshops. Her good friends, Elder Gwen Jackson, Jeanette Herrera, Wanda Montgomery and a host of others were on hand to celebrate her as well.
She spoke of the many things she has initiated over the years and said her real love was working in the prisons. “Seeing the men, women and our youth, I have such compassion,” she said.. “They made a mistake, there is no honor but when you see the change in them. I am so grateful. I love what God has done for me and what he is doing. She gave gifts to many of her friends, church family and those that have helped her along the way.”
She shared gifts with her children and thanked God for her 81-year-old dad.
Folks stood up and gave her a standing ovation.
In closing she made a date with all of us for the year 2020. She had us mark our calendars with an invite to celebrate her 70th Birthday.
Hey, Barbara I had a wonderful time. It’s nice to know celebrating your 60th born day can truly be fun if you have committed yourself to the Creator, love yourself, and spread that love all over this land. Happy Birthday!