Laodicea Church and Lafayette Springs Cemetery
Published 12:00 pm Sunday, December 11, 2022
By Harold Brummett
Cool rainy days, naked trees, muffled steps in damp leaves as we look toward a cold dim winter.
I visit various cemeteries on days like these where the best of my relatives rest. There is a feeling of connection with a part of my family that I never knew.
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In the Lafayette Springs community there is the Laodicea Primitive Baptist Church. The church was constituted in 1840.
Up the hill from the church is the Lafayette Springs cemetery where my Great Grandfather resides. I do not visit often and briefly stay, acknowledging that one’s time in a plot will be longer than time spent above the grass.
The headstone of a Mr. James J. Weeks Sr. caught my eye and I stopped to read even though he is no relation.
Mr. Weeks who lived from 1866 to 1946 stone is inscribed –
Remember friends as you pass by
As you are now, so once was I
As I am now, you are sure to be
Prepare for death and follow me.
Cursory research indicates that variations of this epitaph was first inscribed in European monasteries and has been often repeated.
This version ended up in the Lafayette Springs Cemetery with Mr. Weeks sending his opinion of mortality through the ages.
The Egyptians were the first ones as far as I can determine, that believed a person dies twice.
Once when their physical body dies and the second death is when their name is spoken for the last time. The epitaph was read aloud and Mr. Weeks remembered.
I walk by and visit Louis Martin and Addy Brummett’s markers. I say their names to the wind and purpose of my visit completed.
I drive away as the truck heater warms the air – but a chill remains.