Saturday, November 11, 2006

Day 81: Frank's Homegoing Ceremony (from Anna)

Early this past Wednesday, Anna and her friend Diane started the four and a half hour  drive to Alexandria, Louisiana, to attend funeral services for Frank Jackson, who died on Sunday, to our great sorrow. They returned late that night, tired but not weary, saddened but also exhilarated by the experience. Here’s Anna’s account:drive to

It was a profound experience to have driven with Diane Colvard to Alexandria, Louisiana to the “Homegoing Celebration” for Frank Jackson. We woke up early on Wednesday to a beautiful, sunny day and listened to gospel music as we turned off of I-10 through the gently rolling piney woods from I-10 into Alexandria. As we pulled up to St. Matthews Baptist Church, Reverend Dr. Joe Green and others were standing outside the church and greeted us as if they knew we were coming. We went inside the church and tears welled up in me as I saw Frank’s body and casket with a stethoscope and his gold honors banner next to him. I knew Frank was already a healer, even before receiving his MD or ordination as a minister, two of his greatest ambitions.  

It turned out we were an hour and a half early so the Rev. Green loaded us in his car and drove us to the beautiful home of Annie Rose and Rev. Frank Jackson in the beautiful community of Pineville, about 20 minutes away from the church. On the way we had a very positive visit with the witty, fun, smart and wise pastor who seemed to have the same view of Frank Jr. and his family’s amazing effect on others and how great his impact has been and continues to be. He had heard that Frank had touched many of you reading  John’s blog in Austin and all over the place, as well as many leukemia patients and medical staff in Houston. As we drove to the house among the pines, I noticed the golden light even more than before. We hugged Annie Rose and Rev. Frank and met many family members there.

St. Matthews was packed with hundreds of friends and family, the music beautiful and service totally uplifting. A number of pastors, old friends, family, teachers, and others shared their spiritual insights and memories of Frank. Frank’s mother was a strong and loving presence as always and even rose to clap and sway with others when a friend of Frank sang a beautiful solo. Frank’s father came up to the pulpit and inspired us with his own loving perspectives, and even made a plea for others to help with cures for leukemia and other blood disorders.

Here is the biography printed in the program:

“Frank Jermal Jackson was born on 3/21/85 to Frank and Annie (Rose) Jackson. On the evening of 11/5/06 we released our son into the loving care of our eternal father. Frank’s love and compassion was developed at an early age. He knew and understood his calling and began to pursue a life of ministry and service as a medical doctor. Frank, in 2005, founded and developed his internet company “Premiere Pod,” an internet sales and marketing company. He served as the 2003 class president of Pineville High School where he graduated with honors. During high school, he was an active member of the fellowship of Christian Students. He was a third year student at Xavier University in New Orleans, where he also served on the Student Govt. Assoc. Election Board. He accepted Christ as his Savior and developed a personal relationship with Him at an early age. He embraced his call to the ministry in 2003. He leaves to cherish his memories his loving father and mother, Reverend Frank and Annie Jackson, two sisters Monica Hagan-Lanoix, and Carnetta Rubin, one brother Julius L. Hagan, five nieces whom he cherished; Zyria, Shanna, Gabrielle, Shia, and Summer; one nephew, Devan and a host of aunts, uncles, friends and relatives. A special thank you and we love you to Will, Chris, and Shavun.”

Words can’t express the emotional impact of this service, the drive for 20 plus miles to Colfax, La. for the graveside ceremony and the meal lovingly prepared and served in the Colvax church nearby. Diane and I felt so touched and healed by the love pouring from this young man’s family and community and from the spiritual energy Frank circulates even today. I was only sorry that John had to stay in the clinic for an IV, but I felt his spirit with me the whole time. I am grateful to Diane for sharing this experience with me and to all who touched us on that special day.


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