IN LOVING MEMORY
Phoebe Phynthia Johnson, née Allen, born on Monday, February 22, 1926, was the first of four children born to Lawrence and Elizabeth in the parish of St. Ann in Jamaica, West Indies. She passed away on Wednesday, November 20, 2019, at Jacobi Hospital in the Bronx, New York. Between the time of her birth and her death, Phoebe lived an eventful life. Raised by a Christian mother in Kingston, she found her own faith in Christ as a young adult, giving herself to Him and devoting herself to His service. She married Joseph Johnson and raised their five children, sharing her love and her faith with them. Early in their marriage, she found herself the wife of a minister of the gospel in the Apostolic Church of Jamaica, moving to a number of locations around the island to plant or grow new congregations. When Joseph was sent as a missionary to Barbados, Phoebe and their younger children lived and served with him there for almost six years.
Having previously worked as a store clerk and doctor’s receptionist before leaving for Barbados, Phoebe pursued her dream of becoming a teacher, once the family returned to Jamaica, getting trained and certified before starting a Basic School in the church in Knockpatrick in the parish of Manchester. Beset by many adversities, Phoebe eventually migrated to the United States where she lived the last thirty-seven years of her life. She worked as a Home Health Aide until her retirement, but continued to function as a deaconess, Sunday School teacher, and women’s leader in each of the churches in which she and Joseph served, including Kedesh Christian Sanctuary which they started together with their son-in-law Hugh. Eventually, they settled in as members of Calvary Temple Evangelical Church of Christ in Mount Vernon.
Phoebe was a devout and exemplary woman of God, humbly following the tenets of her faith and providing an example of caring, devoted service to her Lord, her husband and children, and the congregations over which her husband presided. She was an organized woman, ensuring that everything was done “decently and in order”. Every aspect of her life that she had control over was carefully planned and executed. She did her best to be fair to everyone with whom she came in contact, but she was business-like and practical, and though she avoided confrontation as much as possible, she never shied away from what she saw as her duty.
Phoebe leaves behind her husband Joseph, their five children — Lloyd, Blondell, Janet, Karen, and Courtney — her sister Patricia, two nieces and two nephews, seventeen grandchildren, sixteen great-grandchildren, and one great-great grandson, one-year-old Reuben.
We are thankful for the life of our beloved sister, wife, mother, grandmother, aunt, and friend. Sleep in peace, dear heart!
You left me before I was ready…before any of us were ready. We thought we’d have you longer. You were fine the last time I saw you before you slipped away into unconsciousness and then passed through the Veil. I don’t know still, all these months later, how to process your going. And I don’t know who I am without you.
I miss you, Mom. I love you.
Schedule Service: Friday, November 29, 2019 @ 2:00 pm
Location: Hillside Annex, Block 1, Grave 381
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