Over twenty five years ago I was fortunate to find Erlanger Christian Church while searching for a church home for my family. Of course, one of the first people to welcome me into the church was Oscar Smith and his wife, Mary Jane. He reminded me so much of my own grandfather and I was instantly drawn to the caring nature of this wonderful man. Little did I know then that my daughter would end up in the same class as Oc’s grandson. I knew instantly that ECC was going to be my church home but what I didn’t know was that Oscar Smith would play a huge role in my spiritual life as well as my husband’s and my 2 children’s.
At the time I joined ECC we were going through ministers pretty frequently and the committees were hard to fill and the work done around the church was handled by the property committee which consisted of Oscar. I was fortunate enough to be able to stay at home with my newborn child and certainly didn’t mind going to church on days when Oscar was going to be working around the church to help him. It so reminded me of those days that I hung to my grandfather’s overalls when we went to the garden to work or to feed the animals. The church didn’t own the extra space where the parking lot is now yet and Ms. Houston still lived in the little white house beside the church, and the weeds were grown up down the side of the church by the Sunday School rooms. On one day that we worked at church our task was to remove the grown up weeds. I had never had poison ivy in my life and I’m sure it wasn’t because I hadn’t been around it, I had just never gotten so deep into it before. Those of us that know Oscar know what happened at 12 noon everyday and off we went to the Smith house for a sandwich and a drink before we headed back to the church to finish clearing out the brush, bundling it up, and carrying it off in the truck to get rid of it. I spent many days with Oscar but that first work day set a relationship in motion that I will always cherish.
My husband’s father was gravely ill in 1987 and 88 and his only wish was that Scott be baptised. My husband had a conversation with Oscar that was never spoken of and within 2 weeks Scott was baptised in a private family ceremony after church that included Oscar’s presence. Oscar and Scott now had that special spiritual relationship also. I know that we are not the only people that Oscar Smith touched in his life but those that have had something special with Oscar are very lucky people and I assure you that they will never forget the special way he has of touching your heart with a word or a smile.
I thank you Oscar and I know Scott does also, we will always be grateful to you and love you as though you were our family. God Bless You our dear friend.
With all our love,
Scott and Brenda Hamilton Sept. 27, 2010