James Patrick Heafner
October 21, 1936 – January 8, 2021
James Patrick Heafner died on Friday, January 8, 2021 at Glenaire Retirement Community.
He was born on October 21, 1936 in Statesville, NC, the son of James Edwin and Olivia Goode Heafner. He graduated from North Mecklenburg High School and served for two years in the United States Navy. He attended North Carolina State and finished his undergraduate degree at Pfeiffer University in 1962 and his graduate degree from Duke Divinity School in 1964. He served United Methodist churches in Morganton, Landis, Greensboro, High Point, Charlotte and Winston-Salem, as well as serving for 5 years as Conference Coordinator of Youth Ministries and Director of Camp Tekoa. He retired in 1997 and lived in Harnett County, NC for 20 years before moving to Glenaire in 2016.
He is survived by his wife Martha Young Heafner, his daughter Anne Heafner Harrison and husband Rodney, his son John Patrick Heafner and wife Tina, four grandchildren – Logan, Daniel, John Patrick, Jr. and Laney, his brother Edwin Zaccheus and wife Wilma and many nieces, nephews and cousins.
A private service will be held in the near future with a public memorial to be held at a later date.
Donations in his memory may be made to Apex United Methodist Church.
No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
James Patrick Heafner
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January 18, 2021
Pat and I became friends when in 1961 we both entered Duke
Divinity School. In fact, we were roommates our middler year.
We were ordained the same years and entered ministry in 1964.
We were in each other's weddings. I remember Pat for his
confidence, integrity, faithfulness in ministry, and his humor.
His peers respected him.
My fondest regards to Martha, John and Anne.
January 18, 2021
Some of my favorite memories of my lifetime (82 years) are of my cousin Pat, his twin brother Zach, his Mother and Father and our other cousins and grandparents. Also remembering our correspondence when he was in the Navy, hearing him preach in some of his churches, and enjoying our conversations as he researched our Goode genealogy. The many memories are what I will always have and how his enriched my life. To all of the family I send my sincerest sympathy and fond thoughts. Barbara Goode Lancaster
January 14, 2021
I had the honor of going on a mission trip with Pat to Haiti in 1983. He was pastor of First UMC in High Point. I will always remember that time. My prayers and sympathy are extended to his family.
January 9, 2021
Go Tell the Bees that I am Gone
Many of you may recognize this title from the best-selling author Diana Gabaldon. Her books are wonderful, and this title actually comes from an old tradition in England and America that says you must inform your bees of major life events, particularly the death of the beekeeper. It is believed that this tradition comes from a Celtic myth that bees link this world to the spirit world. John Greenleaf Whittier wrote a poem about this called “Telling the Bees”.
…Nothing changed but the hives of bees.
Before them, under the garden wall,
Forward and back,
Went drearily singing the chore-girl small,
Draping each hive with a shred of black.
Trembling, I listened: the summer sun
Had the chill of snow;
For I knew she was telling the bees of one
Gone on a journey we all must go!...
Why do I tell you this random fact? Because it was my turn to tell the bees today. My father was a beekeeper and passed on the love of bees and much of his knowledge and equipment to me. Last night he passed peacefully, shortly after my brother, my mother and I were with him. Although he never managed the bees I have now because of his declining health, he lovingly and carefully built each box where they now live. So this afternoon, I knocked on the hive and announced to the bees that the keeper is gone. And asked them to take all my love to him once more.