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The Reverend Dr. William Pierce Bailey Jr.


1931 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
The Reverend Dr.  William Pierce Bailey Jr. Obituary
The Reverend Dr. William Pierce Bailey, Jr.

Huntingdon, TN

"As the marsh-hen secretly builds on the watery sod.

Behold I will build me a nest on the greatness of God."

The Reverend Dr. William Pierce Bailey, Jr. died Thursday, January 12, 2017, at the age of 85. Bill was preceded in death by his parents, Reverend William P. Bailey and Mrs. Valera Hudson Bailey, a brother Harrison and his beloved first wife, Doris Ford Bailey.

Bill was graduated from Ripley High School, Ripley, Mississippi, attended Millsaps College, graduated the University of Mississippi with a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy, as well as Vanderbilt Divinity School with a Master of Divinity degree. Lambuth University honored him with the Doctor of Divinity degree.

He is survived by his wife Leanne Leathers Bailey; his children, Kent, Mike (Lauralee), and Carole Bailey Stoneking (Hal), 10 grandchildren, 8 great-grandchildren, and a sister, Valera Bailey Jones.

The Reverend Bailey was an ordained minister of the United Methodist Church. He began his 43 years of ministry as a minister in the North Mississippi Conference transferring to the Memphis Conference in 1958. In addition to serving small and large membership churches in rural, urban, suburban, and inner city settings. Bill served in a leadership capacity for the United Methodist Church on the conference, jurisdictional, and general church levels. In 1970, Bill was the youngest minister selected to become a district superintendent in the Memphis Conference. He was elected to lead the delegation to General Conference and be recognized as a candidate for the episcopacy for three quadrennia. His understanding of God's love as influenced by theologian Nels F.S. Ferre' found expression in his inclusive treatment of all of humanity and his understanding of the whole of God's creation. In 1972, Bill was a major contributor in the writing of "The Social Principles of the United Methodist Church", the majority of which remains as originally written. He was a mentor and friend to many colleagues with his gentle mannerly influence.

Visitation and the funeral service will be held on Sunday, January 15, 2017, at Collierville United Methodist Church at the Sanctuary on the town square, 104 N. Rowlett, in Collierville. Visitation will be from 1:00 to 3:00 followed by the Service of Remembrance and Resurrection at 3:30p.m. Private interment services will be at Magnolia Cemetery, 435 S. Mount Pleasant Rd., Collierville, TN.

The family requests that memorial gifts be directed to First United Methodist Church (Domestic Violence Shelter), 101 E. Biythe St., Paris, TN 38242.

Chase Funeral Home

731-986-0500
Published in The Commercial Appeal on Jan. 14, 2017
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