Funeral service for Mrs. Madie Lee Hilts Johnson, 93, will be held at 12:00 noon Saturday, March 2, 2013, at the New Zion Baptist Church in Eunice, Louisiana with Rev. Allen W. Ben officiating. Visitation services will be held from 9:00 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. at New Zion Baptist Church. Burial will be in Honeybee Cemetery under the direction of Ford and Joseph Funeral Home of Opelousas, Louisiana.
The past president of New Zion Baptist Church Deaconess Board has laid down her staff and has pilgrimed beyond the reach of mortal man. On Thursday, February 21, 2013, as she beheld the light that beckoned her from that yonder distant shore, Sister Madie Lee Hilts Johnson answered the call.
Sister Johnson was born on September 7, 1919 to the union of the late Mr. and Mrs. Walter Hilts Sr. of Bunkie, Louisiana. As a child she was taught divine precepts and given spiritual guidance by her parents. The Godly principles instilled in this servant led her to commit her life to Christ as a young child. She was baptized at an early age by the late Rev. D. B. Butler in Bunkie, Louisiana. Upon moving to Eunice, Louisiana, she united with the New Zion Baptist Church where she served until death.
On September 22, 1937, Sister Johnson was united in holy matrimony to the late Deacon Willie Johnson. To this union seven children were born. Her loyalty and love for God were proven by her service as president of the deaconess board, a member of the prayer warriors, the choir, Sunday School, Willing Workers, Mission Department and a supporter of all ministries of the church. She also served as Associate Matron of the Jasmine Chapter #147, Order of Eastern Star and a member of A. L. Ventroy Amaranth Court #22.
She had the distinction of being New Zion Baptist Church ìMother of the Yearî and the National Association of University Women ñ Eunice Branch Historical Honoree, as well as, the oldest member of the church.
Madieís hobbies consisted of listening to music, singing gospel songs, playing the piano, traveling, cooking and reading her Bible.
Sister Johnson worked very hard all of her life: picking cotton, milking 13 cows per day, cooking in restaurants, washing and ironing clothes, cleaning four houses per day and educating her seven children.
As a Christian Parent, teacher and God pleaser, her only request to those she leaves behind is to ìcelebrate my memories by letting the life that I lived speak for me.î
While she awaits the rapture, sweet memories will be cherished by her four daughters ñ Dr. Ezora J. Proctor (Dr. James W. Proctor) of Crowley, Louisiana; Mrs. Sandra J. Simmons of Ruston, Louisiana; Mrs. Gloria J. Vallare and Mrs. Janet J. Guillory of Eunice, Louisiana; one son, Willie Roy Johnson (Mrs. Diana Johnson) of Eunice, Louisiana; two brothers ñ Joseph B. Hilts of Gulf Breeze, Florida and Ralph Hilts of Lindale, Texas; an adopted daughter, Mrs. Agnes W. Haynes of Palo Alto, CA; 25 grandchildren, 31 great grandchildren; a number of nieces, nephews and relatives; Pastor Allen Ben and the New Zion Baptist Church Family; and many friends.
She is preceded in death by her beloved husband Willie Johnson, her daughter Josephine J. Willis, her son Frank Johnson, two sisters Erma Harrison and Birdell Gillespie, and four brothers, Horace Hilts Sr., Wilbert Hilts, Walter Hilts Jr. and Webster D. Hilts.