20 BOCNEWS.com FEBRUARY 2018 On January 4, 2018 at 4:38 am in the morning, our lives were forever changed. It will be a differ- ent walk for me and my children, my grandchildren, my family, our Church, our neighbors, friends and our community. We truly loved him and will always have his remarkable journey to celebrate until the end of time. He was such an amazing warrior. Earlier in the afternoon on the day of his pass- ing, his whole facial expression changed as his eyes became very large and his mouth wide open in unexplainable excitement! After getting his nod that he had just seen angels, we knew his departure was at hand, and our Maker was summoning him. As our family witnessed the transition of our incred- ible overcomer, Apostle Dr. Ralph E. Beechum, Sr., we saw the life of this giant slip from him as he was bidden by our Creator and the Holy Chariot came to gather him. I’m still processing this event and the only conso- lation for me, our children and grandchildren, The House of Joy, our family, friends, neighbors and community, is knowing “to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.” 2 Corinthians 5:8. As our loving and all-wise God, who never makes a mistake, had chosen our loved one, as his purpose was fulfilled. We all had to bow to the solemn Will and Authority of our Almighty God! My family and myself want to sincerely thank God, our HOJ Family, and all of you for the great outpour of love during his lifetime and from the time of his demise until now. Your great show of love and com- passion will never be forgotten. Although we rarely frequented Facebook or participated in the social media, I must say, once my daughter posted the Homegoing of our Apostle, it seemed like the world responded in such an overwhelming fashion that we will forever cherish. There were many, many wonderful photos that were shared via Facebook and started a celebration that continues even until today. Our special thanks to all our community lead- ers and dignitaries who were present to be a part of his Life Celebration! Our hats are off to our many out of town family and friends who traveled on that wintry weekend from far and near and dozens who were unable to travel. The clergy and Ministers’ Wives and Ministers’ Widows have been incredibly supportive. As we congregated on January 12th for the Wake Service, the Grand Homegoing on January 13th and final resting on January 15, 2018, the crowds were great and most supportive, and it was especially comforting to know that so many cared and cel- ebrated the life of this one-of-a kind icon! God once spoke to him and said, “I’m going to bless you above the level that many of your peers achieved and whom you long admired, because of your obedience to my Call and your commitment.” God has done just that and beyond. He is no longer suffering and in pain! That comforts our hearts to know that he has a new body and all new organs. Hallelujah! During the Homegoing as we gazed upon his rested body, it was very difficult, and I wondered how will we go on and continue the process of seeing God’s plan unfold for our family and The House of Joy? God has assured us that His plan will manifest, just as it has since the Homegoing of our late Apostle Ruben Beechum! God is preparing all of us to carry out His succession plan and we will not abandon that plan. Our eyes are on the prize! Apostle would often say, “I don’t want no trouble at the gate!” I believe his arrival brought great joy to the heavenly hosts, his Mom, Dad, Sister and all those who welcomed him! He will eternally be remembered fondly in all our hearts. I’m sure they are all mak- ing heavenly music and worshipping the King of Kings. I am confident he is in a much better place. Each day, I have my moments to celebrate him with tears, with joy and with a plethora of emotions that only our compassionate God and time will heal. My husband continues to guide me and to encourage me along the way. I am confident that the BEST IS YET TO COME, and it will be a third generation of the Beechum Legacy to propel The House of Joy to our next dimension. What’s going to happen? We will continue to pray, live holy and pursue our Almighty God; not be weary in well doing, and con- tinuing to fight the good fight of FAITH like my hus- band expects us to do. “We are strong in the LORD and in the power of His might.” Quoted from the Holy Scriptures Ephesians 6:10. There is nothing too hard for our God, because He most assuredly is in control, and we can’t wait to see the fulfillment of His promises. God has the right people in place to get the job done! We will still need your prayers, love and patience through the process and we will remain courageous. The love and support of my family has been like a rock, and has brought much comfort and stability. Stay tuned for what’s to come. I will always remember my husband as a loyal friend, a great provider, one who had great love for me, our family, the Church and community. He always wanted to make sure he left an inheritance for his children’s children and others. Each day, we are walking in that dream and will not falter, with the LORD on our side! My most passionate memory will be that he loved deeply, and his love was REAL! My heart still beats because we had REAL LOVE! Our love stood the test of time. Until then, my husband, rest from your labors and claim the reward you have worked so diligently for – ETERNAL LIFE! You will never be forgotten. Save us a spot! Your Devoted Wife, Family, Church, Friends, Neighbors and Community Apostle Ralph E. Beechum, Sr. The Phenomenal Giant Sleeps, Until Then ... Until then, my husband, rest from your labors and claim the reward you have worked so diligently for – ETERNAL LIFE! You will never be forgotten. Save us a spot! OBITUARY By First Lady, Carolyn J. Beechum