At 98, Mother Beulah Turner-Brown continues to inspire
AMBER TAFARI LARAQUE Special to the AmNews | 11/28/2012, 1:23 p.m.
Most people have life goals and plans. They picture a certain way that they want their life to end up, and work toward that. For Mother Beulah Turner-Brown, she has worked toward the path that she feels God has put her on, and has not veered off from it.
At 98 years old, Brown published her first book, "From Rags to Riches," in which she shares stories of her life, and her journey in serving God.
Brown was born Nov. 25, 1913, in Cilo, S.C. She moved to New York City in 1939, and has been a resident in Harlem ever since.
One can only imagine the changes that Brown has seen in Harlem through the decades. One thing she recalls is a time of less violence in the neighborhood. "We weren't afraid to walk from 135th to 125th at all hours of the night," she said.
She also points out other changes that she has seen in her neighborhood.
"People were more concerned with the welfare of their neighbor. The young people had someone to look up to."
Being on Earth for 99 years, Brown has stories that she could tell for days.
"From Rags to Riches," a short read, is only one of three completed books. She plans to publish the other two in the near future--the third one when she reaches her 100th birthday. People may wonder why Brown decided to write a book at 98, and she lets it be known that everything was done in God's plan.
"I'm on Earth for a special reason. The Lord has a task for me to do. The only way I can't finish this is if I refuse to do it."
Brown believes that she has been on this Earth for all of this time so that she would have a story to share with the world--but that is just part of what God wants her to do. The book is a part of the puzzle. Ten percent of all of the proceeds from her book will go to rebuilding a mission on Staten Island, a mission that her late husband was pastor of, and what she says is God's ultimate and final assignment for her.
"I believe that someway, somehow, the Lord is going to see that the mission is built," she said. "I'll be ready to lay down and go when that mission is built."
Until that happens, Brown does not believe it will be her time to go. At 98, she walks around the house on her own without a walker or cane. She can read large print without glasses, and she remembers things as far back as the 1920s. It is hard to not believe that she is meant to do the work that she needs to do before she leaves the Earth, and that she is in the perfect health to do so.
"I don't take no kind of medicine," she says of her amazing health at her age. She says that her only problem is that she was told by her doctor that her heart beats slowly, but she refuses to put a pacemaker in her body. She says, "My heart beats slow, but it's still beating."
Brown says that when it is her time to go, she will go, but is happy to still be alive.
"I feel so proud that the Lord allowed me to be on this Earth for almost 100 years."
Brown has been a licensed missionary since 1952, and takes her job as such very seriously. "To be a good missionary, the Lord has to call you. It's a whole lot of work," she says. While she dedicated her life to serving God and spreading his word, she does not push her beliefs on people, or judge others. "We all have sinned and come up short."
In an effort to inspire and help others--she is a mother of five adopted children, and has fostered over 20 children--Brown remains upbeat and faithful every day. "People ask how I have such longevity. You'll have to see God about that."
To purchase "From Rags to Riches," visit www.trafford.com.