There was a major event in the life of St. Augusta Missionary Baptist Church on Saturday, September 15. This day was set aside by the church to celebrate the 100th birthday of “Mother Nina Windom.” This lady is one of the literal “pillars of the church,” an accurate title for one who raised or taught many of its church members. She didn’t do it all at one time but one generation at a time, by caring for them, teaching them, and by her amazing life of service to God. One of her “children” confided that she had raised not only him but his children as well.
“Mama Nana”, as she is fondly named, saved one young boy, now a man with some grey hairs, from picking up a snake, which he thought was a rope. Just the other day, she asked him with a grin, “Have you seen any snakes lately?”
Though her time to be active each day is much shorter than when she was younger, she still is sharp and remembers her “family” who includes many young and old members. In her “36,000 days” of life she has claimed many children as hers, having loved and cared for them at one time or another.
James Moore was one of the guest speakers and relayed how she had saved his life from a bale of hay which had caught on his shirt; he was unharmed but she had received a wound in the process. Everyone at the celebration considers her their “grandmother or mother.” This woman has been a rock for this church, a rock of love that all could learn from and know through her actions that she loved them as her own.
Another speaker, Carl Trice of Trice Funeral Home said to Miss Nina, “It’s people like you who make people like me amount to something.”
Reverend Doctor Marvin Connelly, Jr. stated, “She has taught many members as children and as adults the arts of compassion and love through the art of giving.” The minister had asked what advice she had for living a long life?” Her reply was, “Mind your own business. Live for God. Treat people right.”
Another insight into the wisdom this little but powerful “rock” of the church holds is this: When asked if she had bad days sometimes. Her reply was, “I don’t have bad days. I have good days and days that aren’t as good as others. Any day is a good day.”
Miss Nina, even at 100 years of age, has something in her life that she treasures from this world, besides her own family and her church family. She loves German Chocolate cake. Her favorite hymn is “Can’t Nobody Do Me Like Jesus.”
Her church family made a resolution based on her life being a “sterling example for others” and long history of involvement with this church and her Christian influence in the lives of hundreds of people directly and indirectly to place her picture in the Family Life Center as a mother of the church and proclaim September 16 as her day. Her birthday, September 3 is to be a special day in the church from now on.
Miss Nina also received a commendation from our Mayor John W. Byrne that September 3 will be Nina Windom Day in Fuquay-Varina. She received recognition and congratulations from Willard Scott as a centenarian, from Senator Kay Hagan, Governor Beverly Perdue, and a signed letter from President Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle, wishing her a happy birthday commenting how she had “witnessed many great milestones in our nation’s history.”