Cover photo for Mae Grace Jefferson's Obituary
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1930 Mae 2020

Mae Grace Jefferson

February 12, 1930 — May 8, 2020

Mae Grace Jefferson transitioned from this life on Friday May 8, 2020 in Glendale, New York. Mae Grace Butler Jefferson was born to the late Emma Louise Hill Butler and Thomas Butler in Smithfield, Virginia on February 12, 1930. She accepted Jesus Christ as her Savior early in life and remained a faithful and dutiful member of the church throughout her lifetime. She graduated from Smithfield High School at the top of her class and was awarded a full scholarship to Norfolk State University. She married Willie Decatur Jefferson in 1948 and was predeceased by her ex-husband in 1982. Grace, as she was known to most, moved to Brooklyn, New York in the mid 1950s where she joined Newman Memorial United Methodist Church. While working and raising her children, she continued her education receiving an AAS from New York City Technical College, a BS from Hunter College, and an M. Div from New York Theological Seminary. She spent the majority of her career as a registered nurse caring for the elderly in hospitals and nursing homes across the city and worked for several years with the Visiting Nurses Association. She often said being a visiting nurse was her favorite as it kept her active and provided plenty of one-on-one time with her patients. Her evenings and weekends were filled with church activities and community meetings. She sang in Newman's Cathedral Choir, served as president of the New Lots Block Association in Brooklyn, and worked with local and national political action networks to bring services and ensure justice for underserved communities of color. Upon retiring from nursing, Grace marched forward into her second career as a pastor in the United Methodist Church and served as Local Pastor at Cuyler-Warren Street UMC in Brooklyn for 12 years. During her time at Cuyler-Warren, she provided compassionate spiritual guidance to her church members, their families, and the surrounding community. She worked tirelessly to bring opportunities to the church and community youth and dedicated many hours to counseling and helping all whom she encountered to deepen their faith in God. She was a woman of strong conviction with a loving heart, a firm hand, and a quick wit. If straight-no-chaser was a person, it'd be her. She told it like it was and as far as she was concerned, you could like it or lump it.' She did what was right, not what was easy. And once you were a member of her circle, you were in forever. She maintained relationships from all areas of her life and across the globe. A lover of the written word, you could scarcely find a book or piece of paper in her home without her handwriting on it. She took copious notes on the many books she read and articles she discovered. She wrote down her thoughts about topics ranging from nutrition to religion to politics. She loved to learn and study. Doing a deep dive into any topic that interested her was perhaps her favorite activity. Don't ask her a question about the Word of God because she'd give you more details, perspectives, and reference materials than you could shake a stick at. She loved the Lord. Her faith was unshakeable. She was predeceased by two grandchildren and leaves to mourn her six children: Rose J. Banks, Willie D. Jefferson, Jr., Larry B. Jefferson, Paul M. Jefferson and his wife Delores, Lonnie K. Jefferson, and Patranila Jefferson; 20 grandchildren, 21 great-grandchildren, 9 great-great-grandchildren, and a host of family, friends, and colleagues. A Celebration of Life Service will be held 12pm Friday May 22, 2020 at Shivers Funeral Chapel. Vieiwing will take place Thursday May 21, 2020 from 4-6pm at Shivers Funeral Chapel. Professional Services entrusted to Shivers Funeral Chapel.

Burial Date May 22, 2020

A Celebration of Life Service will be held 12 pm Friday May 22, 2020 at Shivers Funeral Chapel. Vieiwing will take place Thursday May 21, 2020 from 4-7 pm at Shivers Funeral Chapel. Professional Services entrusted to Shivers Funeral Chapel.

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