Hey Cuz

23 Feb


 Judy Wills

Judy Wills


As I’ve said before, my Father was one of 13 children.  So there were lots and lots of aunts, uncles and cousins.  Whenever we would head to Louisiana for a summer visit, we would “disperse” – my parents would stay in Grandmother’s house, my brother stayed with one boy cousin, and I would stay with a girl cousin.  Lots of fun memories with those outings.

One of those cousins, Milton, is the one my brother stayed with most of the time.  They were fairly close in age, and just seemed to hit it off.  I’m sure Bill could tell of some great times they had together.

Cousin Milton

Cousin Milton

So it was a bit surprising to find Milton and his wife at the seminary, when Fred and I landed there for Fred’s study.  While not terribly close – he was several years ahead of Fred – we still managed to get together with them a few times. Time went on – many years, in fact.  We knew that Milton and his wife had gone to the mission field as “music missionaries” to Taiwan.

And then we found ourselves in Orlando, and I became the church secretary for our church.  Our pastor asked at one point, that I look up the missionaries that were having their birthday each week, and publish their names and birth date, so our congregation could pray for them.  We had heard from so many missionaries that they felt especially blessed on their birthdays, since they knew people across the USA were praying for them on that day.

In the process of looking for those missionary’s names, I suddenly remember – Hey! I have a cousin who is/was a missionary!  Milton!  So I researched his name, and low-and-behold, he was on furlough from the mission field!  He had gone from Taiwan to the seminary in Columbia to teach.  So I found his e-mail address and sent off a message – “do you remember me?  Your cousin?”   He wrote back right away, and we re-established our connection after 30 years!   Amazing!

But that’s not the end of the story.  This same pastor loved to have a “Missions Conference” at our church each year.  We would have missionaries from the international field, the USA field, the Florida field, and the Orange County field come and speak to us on different Sundays.  After I had re-established connection with Milton, I asked the pastor if he would like Milton to come as the international missionary speaker one year.  He agreed, and I contacted Milton again.  He came that time, spoke in the worship services, and stayed a few days with us.  We even had Bill and DiVoran meet us for a meal, so we could connect again as a family.  It was such fun!

Milton and his wife went back to the mission field, but to Shanghai.  While we continued to e-mail each other, we had to be very careful in the wording of our messages.  We couldn’t talk about church  God.  As a matter of fact, once Milton mentioned that they had about five people “go swimming” for the first time that week.  We understood that to mean they had been baptized!  And when I had been diagnosed with cancer, and I wrote that information to him, he wrote back that he had “talked to Daddy, and everything is going to be okay!”  Daddy being God.

Milton has retired now, but we are on facebook with each other, and continue to be in touch.  I love the ways God has brought us back into each other’s lives.

2 Responses to “Hey Cuz”

  1. Milton Lites at 4:54 am #

    Hey Cuz, thanks for the mention today. Brings back so many good memories. BTW, which girl cousin did you stay with?


    • ludyja at 12:49 pm #

      Margaret Kay was the one I stayed with – Uncle Les and Aunt Ruby’s daughter. Boy! did we have some fun together!!


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