An Unusual Life

by Rashie Kennedy, Sr.

July 15,1911, an unusual baby was born. What was so unusual about him? 1. He weighed 13 1/2 lbs! 2. Mother and daddy gave him an unusual name! The name Rashie Kennedy, pronounced RAY SHE is hard for people to spell and pronounce.

Rashie remained chubby all during his childhood days. He slimmed down a little in his teen years but has remained on the stout side down through the years. On my 89 birthday month my weight is 188 Ibs.

Rashie was raised by an unusual father! He was a preacher of the Gospel. Mother was also unusual. She gave birth to seven children. I was fourth with three older and three younger. She had to be unusual to give birth to a 13 1/2 Ib baby.

Mother and Daddy prayed with us 4 times each day on our knees, 1st around a big turn table 3 times and again before the open fireplace before going to bed. This is most unusual. How many parents do we find doing this today.

Daddy pastored 4 Churches, one each Sunday. I went with him more than the other children did. This gave me a lot of good fellowship with him. Not only did he pastor churches but he farmed also. So! I was raised on a farm! At first I thought I would be a farmer but that did not last long. Soon I became a salesman for W.T. Raleigh Products. In this I made good money and bought 225 acres of land for $450.00 from a lumber company. There was none cleared on it. I built a house on it.

At age 20,1 had an unusual wedding to my High School girlfriend, Myrtie Mercer. We had three wonderful children, two boys and one girl. They were and are still precious.

Our wedding took place in a model A Ford. We went to the pastor's house and he came out and stood on my side of the car and his wife stood on the other side by Myrtie. He performed the ceremony and his wife witnessed it. We took off on a great Honey Moon and soon came back and settled on my Father's farm. This is what most people would call an unusual wedding.

After farming a short while I went into sales as I mentioned before. Well I was not in sales very long before the Lord called me to become a preacher. Now there is something else unusual. I was the only one of the children that finished High School and the only one to go to college. At about 30 years old with a wife and two children I sold my house and land and went to college. I moved to Nashville TN and attended Free Will Baptist Bible College.

While in Nashville I started and organized Sylvan Park Free Will Baptist Church and pastored it while in college. My son Rashie Jr. lead the singing in that church while he went to college. I worked some in sales to make up for needed funds.

After Bible College we moved to Goldsboro NC and became pastor of the First Free Will Baptist Church. The Lord blessed and to Him be the glory! After a few years there, we moved to Greenville NC. I pastored the First Free Will Baptist Church there for a while and then organized the Grace Church.

There was a group of young parents that appreciated the way I preached the Word and together we organized the Grace Church. It grew fast because I taught a training course for these young parents and others interested.

I was elected chairman of our National Association of Foreign Missions when I left Bible College. I served in this position while pastoring Churches. Being in this position I got acquainted with Churches in other states by helping missionaries plan itineraries. I soon got calls to pastor churches in other states.

The first was Sunny Hills Free Will Baptist Church in Shipley FL. The Lord blessed. We were called to Baycliff, TX, Houston TX, Austin,TX. The Lord blessed our work.

The last church I pastored was in Baton Rouge LA. My son Beverly Shea Kennedy lives across the river from Baton Rouge. Myrtie was becoming ill with Alzhaimers and soon had to be hospitalized and from there to a care home. I went into the home with her to see that she was cared for, and ministered to others while we were there. Myrtie passed away July 27,1994. She was buried in West Duplin Co.cemetary in NC. My plot to be buried is beside her.

I married Kathleen Hansley in October 1996. Her husband had died the same year as Myrtie. We both needed a companion.

I am healthy and still love the Lord. He has been good, unusually good to me all the days of my life. I serve Him still by writing, giving out tracts and ministering in the home I now live. To God Be the Glory. Written by Rashie Kennedy July 7, 2000.