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Those who know Carrie Barksdale would never argue that she’s part of Jesus Christ’s army of Christians who live to spread His gospel.
Now it’s official: the Harriman woman was cited earlier this month with the Hard-Fighting Soldier Award during this month’s 2012 Tennessee State Lectureship banquet in Gatlinburg.
“The pay may not be much,” she told the audience when she was given the honor, “but the retirement is out of this world.”
In addition to the shiny, beveled glass plaque and its display stand presented by Bro. Charles Caruthers of Oak Ridge’s Scarboro Church of Christ, Barksdale was rewarded with a four-minute standing ovation.
Barksdale and her daughter, Darlene Johnson, represented Harriman’s Sevier Drive Church of Christ at the East Tennessee Churches of Christ conference and banquet.
Both also worked on publicity registration at the events.
Others represented were Alcoa Church of Christ and Knoxville’s Central and McDonal Drive Churches of Christ. Registrants hailed from Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi.
Barksdale said only two awards were given during this year’s banquet. The other went to Bro. James Steele of Scarboro Church of Christ.
Though he was unable to attend, Steele’s entire family was at the banquet, and he joined in with words of thanks via teleconferencing.
His son, J. Steele, accepted the plaque on his behalf. Steele was the husband of the late Mary Sue Steele.
The theme of the three-day conference was “The Completeness and Sufficiency of God's Word Brings Joyful Christianity in Troublesome Times,” submitted by Pat Badjet of Knoxville Central Church of Christ.
Gatlinburg Mayor Mike Werner greeted the assembly with words about his city and encouragement to take in some of the sights while in the area.
The welcome reception in the Glenstone Lodge Azalea Room included hors d'oeuvres. Samuel Otis of Scott Avenue Church of Christ, Nashville, was the guest speaker. Bro. Lawrence Bolland, Bro. David Meeks and Caruthers were involved in conducting the programs and other activities.
The following day was filled with workshops. Barksdale said the women’s workshops were filled to hardly standing-room capacity and had to change to a bigger room to accommodate all those in attendance.
Women’s workshop speakers were Kelly Ludy of Chattanooga, Pat Hayes of Jackson and Carolyn Meeks of Lebanon.
The banquet and awards presentations closed out the evening.
Morning worship service on the final day of the conference featured Anthony Walker of Murfreesboro’s Hwy. 231 South Church of Christ. He based his talk, “The Father Holds Our Hope: Reach for It,” on Philippians 3:13. Dismissal prayer was led by William Luth.
The committees were praised for their hard work on this year’s conference.
In addition to Barksdale and Johnson, others working on publicity registration were Luth and Jackie Caruthers.
Registration was by Bro. Lawrence Bolland, Reba Bolland, Tina Bolland, Jackie Caruthers and Charles Caruthers. The program book committee included Jackie Caruthers and Yoland Roebuck. Working on the educational curriculum were Lawrence Bolland, Charles Caruthers and Van Hardin. Tina Bolland and Ann Batley were in charge of the banquet.