In 1954, the Parson and Grace had the old Parsonage beautifully decorated for Christmas! In face, DeWitt entered the door decorating contest held by the local Garden Club and won second prize, an azalea bush, for his door decoration. He was thrilled!
Since the house look so pretty, DeWitt and Grace decided to have a Shippey Christmas Reunion; All of his Brothers and Sisters came from everywhere (he had five Brothers and two Sisters) and Grandmother Shippey and her Sister, Aunt Zellie, were also in the group.
The weather was mild for December and the crowd, for such it was, could spill out onto the wide front porch and the yard.
Sawhorse tables were set up down the middle of the twelve foot wide central hall and the visitors were accommodated in great style.
Each of the families had brought their special dishes; all of the aunts were wonderful cooks and the good food was plentiful!
DeWitt made his special dessert creation-his own recipe- “CHARLOTTE”;
the basic recipe calls for: 1 ( or more depending on the amount needed) cans Carnation evaporated milk, 1 cup sugar, large boxe(s) cherry or strawbewrry Jell-o, ( make up the Jell-o ahead of time and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Freeze the can(s) of milk until ready to serve, open the can(s) and put the frozen milk into the bowl of an electric mixer. Add the bowl of refrigerated Jell-o and sugar. Turn mixer on high and let blend until smooth and fluffy. Scoop into dessert dishes and enjoy!
The Parson knew that his work in Quitman was finished. He had spearheaded a Church building project in which a lovely U-shaped wing of Sunday School rooms, a chapel, a wonderful church kitchen and Minister’s Office were completed. The educational wing was directly in back of the old Parsonage and Judy and Marvin and their friends loved to run and play in the grassy area in the middle of the “U”!
He was prepared to move, although he could have stayed on, if he had chosen. At Annual Conference, the Bishop read out the appointments for the Macon District (as it was known then), “Perry, Rev. L.D. Shippey”. Now the job that lay ahead was to pack their belongings (all those books!) and prepare to leave their friends and the Church and the old Parsonage which had served them so well during their years there.
The Church had just bought a lovely new brick parsonage on North Court Street. The Parson and his family would be the last minister’s family to live in the old house, which would soon be, heartbreakingly, torn down to make room for further expansion.
Now the cry was, “on to Perry”!
Next time: read about the sad introduction to Perry that awaited the Family!