After a long life of joyful and faithful service to the holy Church, the handmaiden of God Paraskeva Brooks, the wife of Archpriest George Brooks (De Queen, AR) reposed peacefully in the early hours of Monday, July 17, 2023 (the feast of the Holy Royal Martyrs of Russia). She is survived by her husband and their one daughter, as well as many grandchildren and great grandchildren.
In the evening of the second day of her repose, she was brought into All Saints of America Orthodox Church in De Queen, where she was met by her loving husband Archpriest George Brooks, as well as Priests Nicholas Olsen and David Carder, who led her into the church, preceded by Subdeacon George Gawreih carrying the processional cross, and John Olsen and Theophil Carder carrying lanterns. Monica Olsen and Efrosinia Carder sang “Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal, have mercy on us”, while her godson, Nicholas Gaffney, quietly read the Psalter. Many of the faithful followed behind the choir. Upon arrival in the church, a Pannikhida was served followed by Vespers. In the morning of the third day of Paraskeva’s repose (Wednesday, July 19) the memorial Divine Liturgy was served by Archpriest Seraphim Holland with Archpriest George Brooks, Priests Matthew Floyd, David Carder and Nicholas Olsen con-celebrating. Following the Liturgy, Archpriest Sergii Alekseev, Dean of Arkansas parishes, led a beautiful and prayerful funeral service, and passed on Archbishop Peter’s blessing and regret for not being able to attend the funeral himself. Archpriest Sergii acknowledged that many people had gathered, and some from a great distance, because of love.
Archpriest George, in his word before the ‘last kiss’ encouraged the faithful with Paraskeva’s last words: “Rejoice, rejoice, rejoice,” which she said with such clarity and joy.
After the services and the burial at the parish cemetery, a memorial meal was served in the parish Trapeza, provided by the parishioners of All Saints of America and Seeker of the Lost (North Little Rock, AR). Flowers and numerous preparations on the property were also provided by Seeker of the Lost parishioners. The rector of the North Little Rock parish, Priest David Carder and his family, as well as many of their parishioners, had been faithful attendees of All Saints of America Church for many years before the founding of their mission, and the two parishes remain close in affection and mutual support.
Archpriest George and Paraskeva had walked the path of salvation together for nearly 58 years. May God grant her the heavenly kingdom. Memory Eternal!