Minister Esther Holley Stephens was born on November 2, 1939, in Merry Hill Township, Bertie County, North Carolina to the late Grant Holley and Thelma Bambury. She entered into eternal rest on January 4, 2022, at her residence in Colleton County.
Minister Esther Stephens enlarged the House of God and touched many lives. Her works in the ministry at Summerville Miracle Revival Center Church began after attending a service there. She loved the Lord and had a yearning and a desire to work for the Lord. After becoming a member in 1985, she worked as an evangelist. She later became the Head Evangelist of Summerville Miracle Revival Center, the Directress of Evangelist for the Cainhoy Miracle Revival Corporation, and later was ordained a Minister of Summerville Revival Center Working in the vineyard was her mission. Matthew 9:37-38 says, "Then he said to his disciples, "The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field. " As she labored in the vineyard, Evangelist Stephens received permission from her Pastor, Bishop Larry Brown, to start a weekly Bible Study in the home of Evelyn and Sylvester Salley. This was to ensure that the members of SMRC Church in the Waterboro area had Bible Study due to the traveling distance.
Minister Stephens was on a mission for God. There wasn't anything that stopped or hindered what she had in her heart to do. She was obedient and faithful to the end. Trouble, problems and sickness aroused, but she said," it was good for me that I have been afflicted. God used my adversity to deepen my relationship with Him."
The mission outreach extended in various ministries. Several Evangelists labored together and assisted. Outstanding laborers were Evangelist Evelyn Salley, Beatrice Salley, Irene Portee, Linda Moore, Annie Ruth Mack, Mother Queen Murdaugh, Cynthia Yates Coaxum, Mother Sadie, Mother Phyllis, and the Richards. Evangelist Stephens continued to evangelize in the state of Connecticut. She left Evangelist Sandra Brown to ensure that the Bible Study in Springtown continued. Evangelist Brown conducted the weekly Bible Study until Evangelist Stephens returned.
As a woman of faith, Evangelist Stephens extended the outreach mission. She took people in her home. She applied to the Department of Social Services in 1994 and received a license to conduct a foster boarding home. She established the Ministry of Help. This ministry consisted of feeding, cleaning homes, decorating, sewing curtains and whatever was needed for a better quality of life in the home. She and the team witnessed rain or shine in Smoaks and Walterboro areas. A Thrift Store was opened in Cottageville for those who needed clothing. She drove the van to transport saints to church, for medical appointments and other provisions. Summer Enrichment Reading was provided in Springtown for children. Evangelist Sandra Brown tutored during that time. Missionaries Brenda Lebby and Brenda Bryant helped with the enrichment program with activities in math and science.
While working in the vineyard, Evangelist Stephens attended revivals with Apostle Helen Smith and Prophetess Rosa Lee Gardner. She also did Evangelist training at Symposium throughout various churches in the ministry. Street service was another area of mission work. She also had an Intercessory Prayer Ministry.
"The Work" of Minister Esther Stephens is completed. The thousands of souls she witnessed, touched, and ministered to cannot be contained to this page, but only summarized. Her LEGACY, "May the Work I've Done, speak for Me."
She was preceded in death by her parents; a daughter, Natalie Lockhart; son, Barry Grier; adopted son-in-law, Sylvester Salley.
She leaves to cherish her fond memories her children, David (Arletha) Harris, Toney, Al, Nathaniel Harris, Allendale, SC, Cynthia Yates-Coaxum (Jamie), Cottageville, SC, Tosha Stephens, Greenwood, SC,Yolanda Duvenary, Walterboro,SC, and Cedric (Brenda) Stephens, Roanoke, Virginia; adopted children, Brenda Bryant and Evelyn Salley; a host of Grandchildren and great grandchildren; God-children, Micha Bryant and Tameka Moore; one daughter-in-law, Janice Grier, Greenville, SC; Special friend, Queenie Murdaugh, Walterboro, SC and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, other relatives and friends.