by Dave Mildenberg
Bill Watson’s remarkable impact on his community was evident yesterday as our church was completely filled for his memorial service, including the balcony. I was among the many Dilworth folks attending, but I wanted to share a couple thoughts for those who couldn’t attend:
We heard a beautiful, moving sermon by our former pastor, Ben Devoid, who told of Bill’s questioning of what impact he had really made in his short life. Ben explained -- and anyone who knew Bill would agree -- it was an easy answer: Your family, your faith, your business career, your interest in other people’s lives, your lust for life all bore unmistakable evidence of a truly impactful, fruitful life.
Ben recalled Bill’s leadership of the Dilworth annual stewardship campaign in which he urged Ben to not discuss “the budget” but instead emphasize the blessings of giving of time, talent and resources. It reflected Bill’s biblical understanding of church leadership.
We heard beautiful music by the Dilworth Chancel Choir led by Bob Pritchard. About 25 strong, the choir was alternatively dynamic, soothing and reverent. Bill’s robe was posted on the wall behind the choir for all to see. Because Bill loved singing so much, Ben read John Wesley’s admonitions for how to sing in church, including this comment:
“Beware of singing as if you were half dead, or half asleep; but lift up your voice with strength. Be no more afraid of your voice now, nor more ashamed of its being heard, than when you sung the songs of Satan.”
All of our hearts break for Amy, Ben and Elizabeth and the rest of Bill’s family.
But none of us who attended Thursday will forget this wonderful, inspired service of praise and remembrance for a true servant of our Lord.