To my beloved fellow Edmonson Countians: I just wanted to say that I think by far our most important consideration with regard to this pandemic, which is a new experience for all of us, is that we be patient, understanding, kind and compassionate with one another as each of us makes our way through it the best we know how.
Let's come out of this experience together, united and strong - one for all and all for one - as Edmonson Countians have long been so beautifully known for doing.
My love and caring to each of you now and always.
Sincerely, Jo Etta Johnson
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The testimony I am giving you now started in the spring of 1959. It was 61 years ago when I was 5 years old when I heard Bro. Willie Doyel preach about the end of time. It's the only sermon I can remember word for word. It was a day service with just a handful of people there. Most of them had walked a few miles to get there and by the time they got there they had the spirit with them.
The sermon was at Bee Spring Missionary Baptist Church and I attended with my mother Ola Vincent Moutardier and my Grandmother Nancy E, Meredith Vincent (Nanny Bun). It was the first time my mother ever let me sit away from her, she said I could sit in the front seat across the aisle from mamaw.
They started with singing, then prayer and then Bro. Doyel started reading from the bible. He closed the bible and started preaching. I could not take my eyes off him. He had sweat running down his face and his shirt was soaked and clinging to him and it didn't even slow him down.
He was preaching about the times before the end of time and about how much power the devil would have, the changes that would take place. He stated that there will be wars and rumors of wars and how Christians would come under attack all over the world. It would be a time of fake prophets. How the country would turn its back on God, the Government would take God, Prayer, The Holy Bible and the Ten commandments out of the schools, out of the oaths of office and oaths of our branches of service. They would even try to keep you from worshiping God. How they would go through the country tearing down Gods symbols and if you talked about God’s Glory you would be mocked and made fun of. How they would taunt God, and allow people of the same sex to marry.
Then he said something as a boy I couldn't understand . He said there would be members of this church and every church throughout the nation that would turn their backs on God and follow the way of the world. I remember looking around at everyone there and I had seen each one in the spirit of the lord, I thought he meant the people in there then, of course he didn't. It would be over 50 years before that would be revealed to me.
That was the way it worked, as things happened and were fulfilled, I could hear the sermon word for word like it was yesterday.
Then Bro. Doyel said one last thing. “At that time it will be Vincent against Vincent, Meredith against Meredith, and Moutardier against Moutardier" then Church was dismissed.
The minute when mom, mamaw and I got in the car they started talking 'what do you think he meant by that?' It had them so worried that they decided to drive to his house and talk with him. When we got there he had already changed into his work clothes to farm.
He came walking over to the car and Mom and Mamaw asked him what he meant by that. He said “Sister Ola and Sister Nanny, I didn't know if I was even going to preach or not until I closed the Bible. I don't know what it means, but I know someone was supposed to hear it. It was for someone there today."
I was sitting in the backseat behind mom next to the window with it rolled down. Bro. Doyel had reached in and was rubbing my head, I looked up into his eyes and he was looking at me, and I saw him say more than I heard him say, “Lord Help Him”.
Four years later I was saved, Bro. Doyel was there in October 1963.
Five years ago God made it all plain to me everything had come to pass. How people from every church would turn their backs on God and go the way of the world. And the Vincent against Vincent, Meredith against Meredith and Moutardier against Moutardier, the meaning was made plain to me. It was me that the sermon was meant for and I was supposed to hear it. At the time of the sermon, that day I was the only one alive that had all three blood lines.
I was supposed to have told this testimony 5 years ago. I went and talked to someone I had a lot of faith and confidence in. He got mad and said that I was making it political. So I doubted myself. The last 5 years have shown me that I had to do this and that I didn't have a choice. I should have done it the first time I was told to.
About the members of every church that would turn their back on God and follow the way of the world. The Bible says give unto man what is man, you still can't go against Gods word. You cannot support an organization, club or party that supports the murder of 60,000,000 + of Gods unborn helpless Children. The woman had her choice before conception. God says ”I knew you in the womb."
And marriage is between a Man and a woman.
You don't have to turn your backs on your loved ones, you pray for them. By condoning the actions that you know in your heart that are wrong, and supporting the organizations or parties that are going against the bible, you are turning your back on God by going the way of the world against his word and what you were taught in the bible.
God comes first over father and son, mother and daughter, brother and sister.
Believe me I have not been the perfect Christian, I have made my mistakes and I have sinned. But I repented to God and begged his forgiveness. This testimony and him saving my soul, and Gods word has been the only consistent thing in my life. I've got my spot and I had to give this testimony. I hope it helps the ones this is for.
God Bless the true Christians and God have mercy on the others.
Douglas Moutardier Jr.
Ecclesiastes 10 : 2
The COVID-19 virus has brought a multitude of challenges to our community. This virus has not only devastated many families in our community, but has changed the way we socialize, how we work, and most importantly how our children are educated. These changes come in the way of using the internet for distancing ourselves from what was the normal day to day life. I am sure we all hope things go back to “normal” soon, but in reality, we may never go back to pre-COVID-19 way of living. I fear we as a county are being left behind because of our poor access to internet providers.
I know there are areas of the county that have good internet service, but there are many areas that have horrible service. I personally live 3 miles from the Brownsville city limits and use Windstream for internet. The max speed I get with Windstream is 1MBPS and they tell me that is the max for my location. Again, I live 3 miles from the Brownsville city limits. I have tried satellite providers and they barely work at all. I have attempted to get Bluegrass internet, but there is too much demand on my tower, so they will not provide to my location. I have no other options. We can barely navigate webpages, and if multiple users are on our WIFI, nothing is going to work.
Election after election I hear the candidates for the Judge Executive office say the way to bring money into the county is for people to move into the county and attract business. Providing quality internet options seems like step one to that plan, but nothing ever improves. The lack of quality internet options is a deterrent to how our elected officials say we grow our tax income. Why would businesses move into the county when we have such a poor internet infrastructure? I recently sold a home and all prospective buyers asked about the internet speed. I am certain we lost 2 buyers because of poor internet speed.
Our Judge Executive and Magistrates must prioritize high-speed internet service to all areas of our county. If we are going to be able to socialize, work, and educate from home, we must have the infrastructure in place. If we are going to attract business and potential home buyers, we must have the infrastructure in place. High-speed internet is no longer a luxury, it is now more than ever a necessity. I call on our elected officials and county executives to act and prioritize bringing high-speed internet to all areas of our county!
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I know this is a late-day greeting, but I would like to wish everyone a blessed memorial Day 2020, despite the worldwide pandemic we are dealing with at the present moment. With patience, perseverance and stick-to-it-ive-ness we will overcome this, too - together. Of this I am certain, because I know what a patriotic, stalwart, hard-working people Edmonson Countians are and always have been. I am SO proud to be an Edmonson Countian and to live here among you, my dearest friends and family.
And to our 2020 graduating class: Keep your head up; keep on keeping on, because this is what Edmonson Countians do. I know you will let this be but a small setback to your future success and enjoyment of life. My mother, an Edmonson Countian, could have no high school graduation ceremony because it was the spring of 193l and the Great Depression was in full swing. Yet, just two years later she was walking and riding horseback from the Capitol Hill (Pig) community of Edmonson County to teach at one-room schools in the Forks community and in what is now Mammoth Cave National Park.
She continued to do so until the late 1930's when she married my dad, who had gone to work for the Park after mustering out of a CC Camp there. In 1943, at the ages of 31 and 34, they volunteered to take her invalid mother into their home. For 11 long years, with Dad's support and help while he worked full-time and farmed on the side, she almost single-handedly took care of her AND myself and my younger brother, as we were born into their home two and five years into this task, respectively. We were ALWAYS at home, except that Dad NEVER failed to take J. C. and me to Sunday School and church at New Liberty, an old-time Methodist church in the Cedar Springs community.
After Grandmother passed away in 1954, Mom immediately re-entered the teaching profession and taught on one-year emergency certificates (renewable only by completing what is now WKU correspondence courses at night as she cooked, cleaned, gardened, made all our lunches and graded papers alongside her course work). In the mid-1960's, she returned to WKU in person, graduating alongside my brother, receiving her first permanent teachers' certificate. She retired from Brownsville Elementary School in the early 1970's on a partial retirement, not having completed enough years of teaching on her permanent certificate to draw a full-time retirement check. In retirement, she and Dad camped all over the United States and even into Mexico, always on a shoestring budget. She would can both veggies from the garden and carp she and Dad would catch together at Lock 6 each August, so they could take their food with them on these trips. They had tickets to go on the Trans-Siberian Railway in the late 1980's when the tour company refunded their money due to the break-up of the then Soviet Union.
At almost 91, she was widowed and living alone at home, still driving her car, and an active member of the very busy Capitol Hill Homemakers' Club, when she collapsed in her bathroom with a massive stroke - on her way to her weekly visit to her hairdresser's. She was not an extraordinary citizen of Edmonson County; she was just typical of her Strong Oak generation - a generation who lived through the Spanish flu epidemic, overcame multiple hardships, including the worst economic depression in our country's history up to that time, who fought and died in two World Wars, and who never, EVER gave up.
To our young citizens: You come from an extraordinarily remarkable heritage. You, too, are made of remarkably "good stuff," and you, too, I believe, will persevere; you WILL succeed. I just have one request: Please stay together; stay united in spirit and purpose, for as our commonwealth seal rightly declares: "United we stand; divided we fall." Attend church together; keep your families together; love and cherish one another and others, and remember that you cannot succeed alone, apart from the love and support of God, family and friends.
This is your heritage. Handle it carefully, and never ever forget where you come from or the extraordinary sacrifices your ancestors have made in tough times, so that you, too, may succeed.
Jo Etta Sanders Johnson
To The Edmonson Voice:
I would like to personally thank Darren Doyle of the Edmonson Voice for reaching out to not only me, but also others within the Christian community during this pandemic. He has asked some of us to respond to a questionnaire concerning impact of the Coronavirus on the church, its members, and community with regards to safety, functionality, and faith. I hope everyone understands that the opinions and thoughts given are solely those of myself and do not reflect upon the opinions of others. I do not speak on behalf of any church. I have tried to openly and sincerely address the matter to the best of my ability. While I don’t have the answers to all of the questions, I have tried to speak upon the matters/issues that I feel may be a help to anyone that may read this.
To all the brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus of the churches in Edmonson County or elsewhere: Grace and peace unto you.
There are many questions that are being asked in these uncertain days that I would love to able to answer, such as when will things be back to normal or how will services be conducted moving forward. The truth is I don’t know when we will be back to worshipping in our cherished customs of shaking hands and embracing in Godly love. Some may be already, while it may take others time to have that level of comfort. There isn’t a definitive answer that would please everyone and I’m not going to try. What I want to take this opportunity to do is encourage people to seek the Lord because even if I or someone else doesn’t have the answers, He will lead you right. (Proverbs 3:5-6) Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.
“If there ever was a time that God’s people need to be coming together, it’s in this day and hour that we’re living in today.” This is a quote that we have heard during many services but it’s one that’s very true for this situation that we face. If a person has been born again and saved by God’s amazing grace, then we are brothers and sisters in Christ and we are part of the same church that’s unseen with human eyes. Our names have been written in the same book in Heaven, which is the Lamb’s Book of Life. This county and the surrounding ones as well are blessed with a multitude of “Old Time” Baptist churches. We are many members but part of the same body, not because we belong to any certain association but because we share a common salvation. In the 12th chapter of 1st Corinthians we are taught that there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another. And whether one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honored, all the members rejoice with it. This doesn’t mean that we won’t have disagreements with each other because our customs and traditions vary from church to church, but we can come together and pray for one another in a time of need. Sometimes the Apostles had disagreements such as when John and James asked to be seated on either side of the Lord (Mark 10:35-45), when Paul withstood Peter to the face (Galatians 2:11-14), and when Paul wouldn’t travel with Mark (Acts 15:37-40).
You might think this doesn’t sound so encouraging but I want you to understand that those that got upset at John and James broke bread with them during the Lord’s Supper. Even though Paul withstood Peter to the face, Peter referred to Paul as a beloved brother and mentioned Paul’s epistle in his own letter (2nd Peter 3:15-16). Lastly there was a time when Paul didn’t travel with Mark but changed his mind and sent for him later, for he was profitable to Paul for the ministry (2 Timothy 4:11). We, too, can come together as they did to shine a light to a lost and dying world.
Satan would love to divide us so that he might accomplish scattering the power of the holy people, but remember that Jesus prayed for his disciples that they wouldn’t be taken out of this world but that they should be protected from the evil. He not only prayed for them but us also saying, “Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; that they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou has sent me.”
So brothers and sisters, let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works. If God has saved you, He has given you a gift to use, and I want to encourage everyone to be not afraid to use it. If you feel you need to assemble yourselves together as the manner of some is, then go and serve with all you heart as unto God. If you still feel the need to stay home and pray, then do as Mary, John Mark, and Rhoda did the book of Acts (12:12-13) and pray without ceasing with all your hearts. If you feel to pray out on a hillside, pray the prayer that God gives you with all your heart because that’s the only prayer that will work. If you feel to put a song on social media or send someone a text message, then I encourage you to serve with all your heart as unto God. Whatsoever you do, do all for the glory of God. Offer unto God thanksgiving and pay your vows to the Most High.
As things move forward in this unusual time, let us walk with patience with one another realizing that how you view things may not be how your brother/sister views it. This is demonstrated in Romans 14 as Paul says, “One man esteemeth one day above another: another esteemeth everyday alike. Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind. He that regardeth the day, regardeth it unto the Lord; and he that regardeth not the day, to the Lord he doth not regard it. He that eateth, eateth to the Lord, for he giveth God thanks; and he that eateth not, to the Lord he eateth not, and giveth God thanks.” I use this as an example because someone might question why would someone gather in a group of people and take a risk while others will wonder why people won’t come to church. My thought on the matter, to both sides, is because every man is full persuaded in his own mind, they are each doing what is right. Let’s remember that we are all part of the same body and pray in the place where God convicts us to be at.
We are no doubt in some troubled days, but the word says all things work together for good to them that love God and even though there are things I can’t answer, I do believe His word is true. There will be blessings for those that faint not.
God is still on the throne. He still has some people holding on and the lost still has a little more time to get ready. Church, let’s be of one mind and do all to stand and fight the good fight.
This pandemic has affected all of our churches and though our services stopped for a time, the good part is that our hope and faith in Jesus has never ceased. I have been uplifted during this time by things that I might not have expected to bring so much joy, such as hearing the church bells ring. There has been times that my heart would have broken to see only one or two show up for service, but over the last couple of months, when just a few came together on Sunday morning, it has sent thrills of joy to my soul. God is still good. Let us take comfort in knowing that He is near all of us when we call upon Him in truth.
As we move along, let’s hope for the day where we can see the house of God full but remember that, “for where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I in the midst of them.” (Matthew 18:20).
May the Lord bless and keep you and may He make His face shine upon you and be gracious to you.
In Christian Love,
Brother Joe Logan