child of YeHoVaH, cousin, COVID-19, encouraging, epidemic/pestilence, evangelist, giving, godly, grandmother, kind, loving, mother, ordained minister, selfless, servant, Sheila McLeod, vivacious, wife, worship in song, Yeshua follower
Remembering a life well lived and all the joy it brought to so many. In memory of a truly amazing person.
The righteous one perishes,
but no one takes it to heart.
Godly men are taken away,
but no one discerns
that the righteous man is taken from evil.
He enters into shalom.
They rest on their beds,
each who walked in his integrity. ~ Isaiah 57:1-2, TLV
And He said, “Watch out that you are not led astray! For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am He’ and ‘The time is near!’ Do not follow them. And when you hear of wars and chaos, do not be terrorized. For these things need to happen first, but the end will not come at once.”
Then He continued telling them, “Nation will rise up against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be great earthquakes along with famines and epidemics in various places, and there will be terrors along with great signs from heaven. ~ Luke 21:8-11, TLV
While the above Isaiah 57 verses’ focus is on righteous men, the biblical truth mentioned in these verses can also apply to righteous women. My cousin Sheila McLeod was a righteous woman, and I believe YeHoVaH took her so that she could escape this evil world by entering into His heavenly rest.
On May 29, 2021, Sheila lost her fight against COVID-19 – one of the many pestilences (plagues, epidemics/pandemics) Yeshua prophesied would be an end-time sign. Thankfully, all her family members know that although she is absent from the Body of Yeshua, as well as absent from her own earthly body, she is now present with Yeshua and waiting to receive her glorified body.
To be honest, I was speechless when I heard Sheila had died. It was a bit of a shock to me that YeHoVaH had called home this loving, encouraging, vivacious 63-year-old woman, child of YeHoVaH, and Yeshua follower who served others well. Sheila was kind to everyone. She was giving, too.
I remember how she lovingly invited me to come live with her and her family in Phoenix, when my marriage fell apart. She not only magnanimously housed and fed me but also let me drive her car, until I found a job and my own place.
Being around someone who loved YeHoVaH and Yeshua as much as I did was the spiritual medicine I needed to heal from my broken heart and broken marriage. Sheila was that someone.
We worshipped together in the same church and ministry. We discussed Scripture together. We discussed the importance of speaking in tongues, which she did first. We participated on several of CWDA Ministry’s programs. We attended gatherings in which some of Christendom’s well-known preachers and pastors were the guest speakers. We went to Gospel concerts together.
I was called into the ministry and ordained before Sheila, but maybe that was only because I was seven years older than she. Nevertheless, I cannot remember a time when Sheila wasn’t sharing Yeshua’s Gospel, so I knew it was only a matter of time before she would be called into the ministry and ordained, too.
Sheila loved to sing and to travel; furthermore, she loved to meet new people. She worshipped in song, and she evangelized wherever she traveled, which was all over this world. Sheila also befriended numerous individuals from the various places she visited.
My cousin was a godly wife of one husband, Eugene McLeod. Additionally, Sheila was a godly mother of two children – Denné and Jarret – and she was a godly grandmother to Alivia. My cousin loved and inspired them all, as well as loved and inspired her siblings, nieces, nephews, cousins, and fellow co-laborers in the ministry. That is why there can be no doubt that these mentioned individuals and her beloved mother (Aunt Vera) will dearly miss Sheila.
For now, cousin, your work is done on this earth. Rest in peace in paradise, Sheila!
The Obituary . . .
Sheila Arlene McLeod
January 6, 1958 – May 29, 2021
Sheila Arlene McLeod (Long) was born on January 6, 1958, to her loving parents William Henry Long and Vera Mae Wade (Long). She was the youngest of four children. Although she was born in a Newark hospital, she was raised in East Orange, NJ.
Sheila received her formal education from the East Orange Public School system. After graduating from East Orange High School, Sheila went on to college at Johnson & Wales University in Providence, RI. She originally started her college career to become an Ambassador. Later changing her major to Fashion Merchandising.
In 1979, Sheila married Eugene McLeod, from which two beautiful children were born. Of the two, the first was Denne’. Three years later, Sheila and Eugene followed her parents and her first cousin Althea Long to leave East Orange and moved to Phoenix, AZ. In 1985, their second child Jarret was born.
Sheila spent the majority of her working years with Fennemore Craig Law Firm, 32 years to be exact. During those 32 years, she became a member of Pilgrim Rest Baptist Church, approximately in 1984, which was the beginning of her spiritual awakening and her journey to serve God. After some time, Sheila became very involved in Christian Ministry. Other passions of Sheila’s were international travel and family genealogy. At one point, she studied to become a travel agent.
It wasn’t long before Sheila began traveling internationally for personal fulfillment and for Christian missionary ministry as a member of Christian Women’s Devotional Alliance (CWDA) and Oasis International Fellowship Ministry. Ultimately, Sheila became an ordained minister operating in the office of evangelism and the spoken word. Her last place of ministry was with Living Waters Church of Mesa.
Aside from Sheila’s work in ministry and her many travels around the world, she loved spending time with her immediate and extended family. She comes from a family full of singers and musicians. It’s no wonder that one of her favorite passions was singing in the church choir and singing with her family. Sheila grew up singing with her sisters, her brother, and many cousins who were more like siblings than cousins. Sheila also took many cruises, and when she was at home she enjoyed her favorite TV shows – a shared family trait.
Sheila and Eugene were married 41 years. They had an undeniable bond that could not be broken. As the Scripture says, “a three-strand cord cannot easily be broken.” They lived their vows until parted by death.
Sheila heard the trumpet sound and received her wings on the afternoon of May 29, 2021. She will always be remembered for her strong opinions, her fierce sense of fashion, her perfectly posed pictures, and her love for her husband, children, and granddaughter. She loved her mother “Mommy,” her siblings, and her nieces, nephews, and all of her hundreds of cousins who were an extension of her sibling family. Sheila was affectionately called Grammy by her only granddaughter, Alivia, and aunty, aunt Shilla, or just “Shilla” by her nieces, nephews, everyone in the family, and by her friends. Anyone who had ever met her would quickly be corrected with the proper pronunciation of her name. She would say, “it’s not Sheela it’s Shilla.”
She leaves to cherish her memory her loving husband Eugene McLeod, daughter Denne’ Armstead, son Jarret McLeod, a stepson and stepdaughter Terrell Lucas and Qamar Cureton, a son-in-law David Armstead, one granddaughter Alivia Armstead, mother Vera Mae Long-Morgan, two sisters Maxine Marshall and Caressa Long-Golden, a brother Kevin Long, a sister-in-law Julia McLeod Traylor, four brothers-in-law Edward Marshall, Hallowell McLeod II, Larry Traylor, and Willy Bright, 12 nieces and nephews, 12 great-nieces and nephews, a host of cousins, and a tremendous number of beloved friends and co-workers. She was predeceased by her father William Henry Long, mother and father-in-law Hallowell Sr. and Artelia McLeod, and two sisters-in-law Robin Long and Linda Bright. She will be sorely missed by all but her memory will always be held in our heart forever.