Pastors' Memoirs

William Stewart Maxey, 1913-1988

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William Stewart Maxey was born in Bramwell, West Virginia, July 1, 1913. He died May 9, 1988, and was buried at the White- stone United Methodist Church cemetery, Whitestone, Va. The Rev. Jarred Smith, pastor of Mathews Chapel United Methodist Church, and the Rev. Robert C. Painter, retired, officiated at the funeral. Stewart is survived by Frances Fletcher Maxey, his wife of 36 years; his daughter, Mrs. Linda M. Jones, and two granddaughters.

Stewart attended Bluefield College, Bluefield, W. Va., and the National University Law School, Washington, D.C. He was graduated from Wesley Theological Seminary and American University in Washington, and did graduate work at Perkins School of Theology, Dallas, Texas, and at Duke Divinity School, Durham, N.C.

Entering the ministry in 1958, Stewart served the following charges: Remington, Sterling, Mathews, Bowling Green, and White- stone. He retired in 1979, and then was supply pastor at the Gloucester-Mathews Charge for two years.

All who knew Stewart will remember him as a warmhearted, outgoing person to whom others were naturally drawn. Because of his friendliness he was well-liked in every parish he served. His ministry extended beyond the pastoral care of his own congregation to involvement in community service and leadership responsibility.

Stewart preached and lived a positive faith. He said upon his retirement that he wanted to continue to put into practice the positive thinking he had always preached. He then formed the Stewart Maxey Advertising Specialty Company which he operated from his home in Gwynn, Va. And he continued to be active in church life. He and Frances became a faithful part of the family of Mathews Chapel United Methodist Church, Cobbs Creek, Va. Both were valued assets to the choir. As a retired minister in the congregation, Stewart was always a trusted friend and staunch supporter of the pastor.

The call to preach remained strong in Stewart's heart. Whenever he was called upon to fill a pulpit, he went gladly. When this writer was pastor of Mathews Chapel, it was with confidence that Stewart would be asked to take charge of the pulpit when need arose. The congregation was always blessed by his gracious personality and his sincere pastoral preaching.

The following passage from the book of Hebrews was used at the funeral. "Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses... let us run with patience the race that is set before us." Stewart ran his race with perseverance and finished it in faith and integrity. Now he is a part of that "great cloud of witnesses." Stewart loved to sing, and now surely his voice is lifted in a song of praise to "Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith."

-Robert C. Painter




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