Rev. David L. Boyle Sr. was known for his positive ministry, descriptive sermons, love of education and encouraging spirit, which manifested in daily conversations when he bestowed on everyone the divine title of “Saint.”
“He called me Saint Win,” recalled Rev. Eric Winston, pastor of Mt. Zion Baptist Church on South Parkway in Memphis. “He would call everybody saint. Even though we weren’t saintly in our actions, he would say to us, ‘That’s where you’re going to be.’ It’s as if he were speaking our future in the midst of our mess.”
Rev. Boyle, a Memphis native and well-known pastor of Antioch Baptist Church in Whiteville, Tenn., died on Nov. 5. He was 60.
Winston described his longtime friend as a “Prince of Preachers,” who held several advanced degrees and loved to read. He’d often leave the bookstore with five copies of the same book to pass out to friends so they could discuss it.
In January, Winston and Rev. Boyle traveled to Nigeria to teach seminary students there for two weeks. The two pastors returned with lighter luggage after giving the students in need most of their clothing and shoes.
Rev. Boyle loved playing golf, which he referred to as having “prayer meeting.” “He’d say, ‘Prayer meeting starts at Wedgewood at 10:30.’ We knew what that meant,” Winston recalled. “It was time to play golf.”
Rev. Keith Norman, pastor of First Baptist Church-Broad in Memphis, said Rev. Boyle was a humanitarian and a “teaching pastor,” who felt strongly about voting rights and social justice and encouraged his congregation to better themselves through education. “He was forever optimistic about what people could accomplish,” Norman said.
Norman said Rev. Boyle was an artist when he taught and could draw pictures with his words. But, Norman said, it was his actions while battling cancer at the end of his journey that made the biggest impression.
“All that he had taught and preached, he modeled it at the end,” Norman said.
Rev. Boyle leaves behind his wife, Linda Diane Boyle; daughter, Aronica Boyle Holmes and son, David Boyle Jr. A service was held Saturday at First Baptist-Broad.
Homegoing of a Saint: Rev. David L. Boyle, Sr., Memphis, TN