Saturday, March 22, 2008

Tribute to my Favorite Ancestor

This tribute was printed in the 100th Anniversary Sourvenir Journal of the Saints Delight Holy Church, Vance County, NC in February 2007.

Luvenia Jeffress Bullock
“Holy Venia”
(1864 – 1951)

Every since I was a little girl, I remember your granddaughter Emma Johnson Thornton (my maternal grandmother), telling me about the way you entered the church shouting “Holy, Holy, Holy!” and about the bonnets, long skirts and dress, and lace-up boots you wore. Although I was born 12 years after your death, I have gotten to know you through listening to the memories of several of your grandchildren and others who knew you, and by studying the numerous legal papers left on this earth documenting your existence.

Many people still recall your grand entrance into Saints Delight and Morning Star holiness churches. Some say you began your shout of “Holy!” as soon as you stepped on the church ground, then you would stomp at the church door, and dance down the aisle speaking in tongues or shouting “Holy!” If the spirit of praise had died down in the church before your arrival, many say that it would certainly liven up when you arrived. When you got to your seat, they say that you would always kneel and pray.

I have also spent many hours during the past 12 years studying your life through legal papers in Warren and Vance counties and have learned that you were born during the Civil War to slaves Green and Ella Scott Jeffress; in 1882 you married Andrew Bullock, the son of Ottoway and Mimmy Bullock, and to this union were born ten children--Mollie, John, James, Bell (my great-grandmother), Channie, Mima, Nancy, Andrew, Bessie, and Joseph; you served the Vance County community as a Midwife from 1920 to 1937 delivering over 300 babies; in your old age, you had a church built next to your home and called it Veanus Chapel House of Prayer, and that the land where you lived is now part of the Kerr Lake and Bullocksville Park area.

Thank you Grandma Ven for living a life of holiness and dedication to God, for the prayers you prayed, and for the spiritual legacy you have left for our family and others to follow.


Drusilla Octavia Pair
Your Great-Great Granddaughter


Steve Danko said...

What a lovely tribute, Dru! And what a wonderful way to tell Holy Venia's story, by speaking directly to her. She was quite a remarkable woman.

Anonymous said...

"Holy Venia" is living on through your tribute and your thinking of her.

Now, as we have become acquainted with her, our lives are richer for it.

"Guided by the Ancestors"

Unknown said...

Great tribute to your wonderful ancestor! I continue to find gems on your blog!