By Sheilah Belle
Richmond, VA – It was a Homegoing service that will be remembered for years to come as the Gospel Community came out to say Goodbye to Richmond’s Queen of Gospel Music, Evangelist Dr. Maggie Ingram, 84 who would have been 85 years old on July 4th.
The Homegoing service for Mother Maggie as she was more affectingly known was held on Thursday, July 2 at 11am at Saint Paul’s Baptist Church, 4247 Creighton Road, Richmond, VA. Thousands poured into the 3,200 seater sanctuary to show their love and devotion to a woman who lived, loved and left a legacy in Gospel Music.
Musical tributes and selections were rendered by the Redeem COGIC Young Adult Choir and The Greater Richmond Metro Mass Choir, all dressed in white, under the direction of Dr. Johnny J. Branch starting one hour before the actual Homegoing service began.
Officiating the service was Rev. Felicia Green PhD, Associate Pastor of St. Paul’s Baptist Church and delivering the Eulogy was Elder George Williams, Senior Pastor of Redeem Church of God in Christ in Richmond.
The service began with an opening Hymn, followed by Scripture Readings and a Prayer of Thanksgiving by Rev. Roscoe D. Cooper., of Metropolitan African American Baptist Church, Richmond, VA.
(Left photo: Pastor Larry Miles) Greetings were given by many close friends, Pastors, Dignitaries representing the Mayor’s Office, the U.S. Congress and Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee. Among those sharing was Pastor Larry Miles, Senior Pastor of Fresh Anointing Cathedral. He shared his moment while being at Mother Maggie’s home before she transitioned to be with the Lord.
She was resting in her bed where she had been for the past few weeks. However suddenly she did something surprising to everyone who was nearby including her daughter Rev. Almeta Ingram-Miller. “Suddenly Mother Maggie set up, and she opened her eyes wide and she said, WOW! She then laid back in the bed, took two breaths and she was gone. God allowed her to see Glory just before she transitioned,” said Pastor Miles.
His words alone brought chills and at the same time a soothing visual that warmed everyone’s heart.
Acknowledgements were also shared by family members and friends before a powerful yet heartfelt Musical Tribute was delivered by The Ingramettes. Their love pushed through every note bringing many to their feet, while waving their hands in agreement.
A beautiful slide presentation was also shown during the silent reading of the Obituary.
Following was the Eulogy by Elder Williams who touched every heart with a strong message of just how God is in control and took good care of Mother Maggie Ingram during her 84 years on earth.
Closing out the service were the Ingramettes before the recessional and the burial at Forest Lawn Cemetery.
However now that Mother Maggie is resting peacefully, Rev. Almeta Ingram says, “I am simply now waiting on God to tell me what is next.”
The music of Evangelist Maggie Ingram & the Ingramettes has been achieved in the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C. with other Traditional Gospel Music recordings. She will be remembered by the legacy she has left behind with her contributions to Gospel Music. In January 2015, the African Gospel Quartet Association honored Evangelist Maggie Ingram with The Dorothy Love Coates Living Legend Award, for lifetime achievement in the field of Quartet Gospel Music, The ceremony was held in Birmingham, AL.
In October 2010, the Virginia Triumphant College and Seminary conferred an honorary doctorate degree, Doctor of Musical Arts, upon Evangelist Maggie Ingram. On August 26, 2011, Evangelist Maggie Ingram & the Ingramettes returned to the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. and performed for the opening festivities of the Martin Luther King Memorial in Washington, D.C.
Additionally in February 2010, Evangelist Maggie Ingram and her oldest daughter were invited to the University of VA (Charlottesville, VA) as guest lecturers for the Lecture and Performance Series on Traditional Music.
Although the singing ministry of Evangelist Maggie Ingram & The Ingramettes has been taken all over the country, she remained an Ambassador for the Kingdom of God first and foremost. She also formed a partnership with the Petersburg (VA) Federal Correction facility on River Road and for the past 6 years she and the Ingramettes have ministered to inmates in low, medium and maximum security sections of the prison.
Her greatest passion was reading the scripture for Elder Weatherspoon when he preached. Early in the 1980’s Maggie received her call to the preaching ministry, and was licensed Evangelist Maggie Ingram by the Church of God in Christ, State of VA, Second Jurisdiction, under the leadership of Bishop Samuel Green, Jurisdictional Prelate, 2nd Jurisdiction- State of Virginia.
She remained a member of the Redeem Church of God in Christ (Elder George Williams, Pastor) until the Lord called her home.
She was truly a Role Model as well as a Humanitarian and will be truly missed.
May we continue to keep the family in prayer.