On Monday, April 14, 2003, Pastor Williams was honored as Pastor of the Year by the Missionary Baptist Minister’s Conference of Washington, D.C. & Vicinity. Pastor was never concerned with the length of time he had here on earth. He was more concerned with being obedient to God’s Will, saving souls, and loving his fellow man. For this is the reason for his award.
Over the next six months, the congregation watched with tear-filled eyes as Pastor Williams transformed. Regardless of the depth of this illness, he proved that our Savior was carrying him all the way – everyday.
Enduring much pain, he came to church just about every Sunday. Two years before, he appointed Rev. Mark Cato, Sr. Assistant to the Pastor, and Rev. Cato was just that! He stepped in and carried out every wish of the Pastor’s.
He continued Pastor’s program, representing him at the Minister’s Conference, maintaining standing engagements, teaching the Saturday Evening Bible Study Class, preaching on Sunday mornings, officiating funerals, supervising the ministerial staff, etc. Pastor was very pleased with the way Rev. Cato responded to the needs of the church, and the religious community has taken notice.
Pastor Williams was a very strong man. He endured the kind of pain we could only imagine. He preferred being alert and readily available for the members just in case they called on him.
December 9, 2003, at the Washington Home, Rev. Dr. Edgar L. Williams, Sr., received his reward. Always thinking and caring about his family, he waited until they were gone, then he left us all.
On December 12, 2003 an all day viewing was held at Second New St. Paul Baptist Church. People from all walks of life filed by his glass enclosed coffin in amazement. He was dressed in a black tuxedo with a red bow tie and cummerbund. He was still the best dressed man in town.
A memorial service was held that evening with Sons of Second New St. Paul as special guest. Those who were pastors brought their own choir and/or rendered song. Auxiliaries gave tributes, and as he wished, there was lots of music. Son of St. Paul, Pastor Freddie Davis of the Pilgrim Rest Baptist Church, presided over this service.
On Saturday, December 13, a home going service was held for Pastor Williams at Second New St. Paul. There were over 2000 people in attendance. Pastor Be Louis Collenton, of Shiloh Baptist Church presided over the service. Government officials, local, national, international clergy, family, friends, and people who had only heard of him were present. Rev. Dr. Edgar L. Williams, Jr., profoundly preached his father’s eulogy. Pastor Williams was laid to rest in Cedar Hill Cemetery in Suitland, Md.
Pastor Williams entrusted Deacon James Walker, the Board of Deacons and the Ministerial staff to guide members of St. Paul until we are blessed with a new Pastor. We are so grateful to them for all they do in the name of Jesus.