Love always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. As did DePayne Middleton-Doctor. And sometimes, love to sings in a heavenly alto soprano, the voice her four daughters keep in their hearts. Her life was a praise hymn.
She loved the “Word,” and loved words. A gifted and beloved librarian, Cynthia Hurd knew the power of words to transform lives. Books were sacred to her. So was family. Always caring, sharing, encouraging, helping, giving. She lived full of hope.
Susie Jackson gathered her big family around a table of love and fed them the bread of life. She was always cooking, always saying grace, a blessing across the generations. Everyone was welcome. Hers was an abundant, overflowing heart.
Ethel Lance made things sparkle. She sparkled. Jazzy, joyful, full of life, empty of regret. She even met Martin Luther King once who said I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear. The same was true of Ethel Lance.
Reverend Pinckney was ordained into the ministry at 18 and became the youngest member of the South Carolina State Legislature at 23. He was leading Mother Emanuel into the future with education and achievements enough for several lifetimes. He loved his family infinitely. Clementa Pinckney lived on God’s time.
Beloved. That’s Tywanza Sanders. Son, grandson, best friend. Ty was a grad student, a barber, a thinker, a doer and a seeker who wrapped his arms around life like a hug. A beautiful young prince of a person, his smile matched his soul.
The prophet asked what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with your God? This was Daniel Simmons’ life. Holy man, family man, military man, highly educated man. Studying was his hobby. So was kindness.
Speech pathologist, teacher, track coach, doctoral student, minister, mother extraordinaire. Sharonda Coleman-Singleton ran circles around life. Beautiful inside and out, she was a true champion. God was her finish line.
A Licientiate Minister, she scattered seeds of faith wherever she went, as a teacher, counselor, minister, wife, mother, friend. Myra Thompson was a giver and helper. She grew up in the church and beautiful flowers grew in her yard. So did love.