Funeral services for the Rev. Royce Christmas, 78, of Hamburg, Ark. are scheduled for 10 a.m., Tuesday, January 7, 2014 at the Mt. Olive Baptist Church with the Rev. Jimmy D. Wallace and the Rev. Eric Hodge officiating. Burial will be in the Hollis Chapel Memory Garden Cemetery.
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Bro. Royce died Saturday, January 4, 2014 at his residence outside of Hamburg.
Bro. Royce was a native of Hamburg and moved back to Hamburg in 2010. He graduated from Hamburg High School in 1953 and attended Junior College at Walnut Ridge. He graduated from Ouachita Baptist University and then attended Southwestern Baptist Seminary in Dallas, Texas. He received his Doctorate at the Mississippi Baptist Seminary in Jackson, Miss. in 1982. He was a veteran of the United States Air Force. He was a Southern Baptist Minister for over 49 years, having ministered at Beirne Baptist Church in Beirne; Live Oak Baptist Church in Gatesville, Texas; was the Chaplin at the State School for Boys at Gatesville, Texas; First Baptist Church in McGregor, Texas; Eudora Baptist Church in Eudora (twice); Highland Heights in Benton; Parkview Baptist Church in Greenville, Miss.; Immanuel Baptist Church in Benton; Immanuel Baptist IMB in Juneau, Alaska; First Baptist Church in Kenai, Alaska; First Baptist Church in Bastrop; Glacier Valley Baptist Church in Juneau, Alaska; First Baptist Church of Judsonia in Judsonia; Arkansas City Baptist Church in Arkansas City; and Greenacres Baptist Church in Bastrop. He started two Mission Churches and made two Mission Trips to Africa. He loved spending time with his family and his hobbies were fishing, bow hunting, gardening and doing yard work.
He was preceded in death by his parents, John H. & Mabrey Courtney Christmas; two brothers, Robert Lloyd Christmas and Donald Collins Christmas.
He is survived by his wife of 58 years, Betty Rodgers Christmas of Hamburg; two sons, John Christmas and wife, Kem, of Arkansas City, Ark. and Tim Christmas of Hamburg; a daughter, Lisa Christmas Rose and husband, Tom, of Spotsylvania, Va.; a sister, Joyce Ann Rhodes of Pine Bluff, Ark.; a sister-in-law, Jan Christmas of Hamburg; seven grandchildren, Brett Christmas of Arkansas City, Ark., Liz Christmas Taylor of Virginia, Tyler Taylor of Montana, Zach Christmas and wife, Hannah, of Hamburg; Jonathan Taylor of Virginia, Rebekah Christmas Taylor of Virginia and Samantha Christmas of Arkansas City, Ark.
Pallbearers are Mark Christmas, Brett Christmas, Zach Christmas, Scott Christmas, Clayton Rhodes, Drew Carpenter, Butch Lochala and Jackie Carpenter. Honorary pallbearer is James Morris.
Memorials may be made to the Gideon's International, PO Box 83, Crossett, Ark. 71635. Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Jones-Hartshorn Funeral Home of Hamburg. Online guest book at www.jones-hartshorn.com
Published in Bastrop Daily Enterprise on Jan. 7, 2014