Newspaper Clipping, undated
Polo Public Library
Rev. Edwin K. Yeakel
Rev. Edwin K. Yeakel was born in Berks County, Pa., on September 2, 1857 and passed away peacefully, to be with his Lord, Feb. 2, 1937, at the Evangelical Deaconess Hospital, Freeport, Ill., aged 79 years and 5 months.
At the age of 14 years his parents and family moved to Illinois and settled at Polo, Ogle County; later on a farm west of Polo. He entered the Polo Community High School, of which he was a graduate with the class of 1877. For about a year he was teaching in the public school. However he felt the need of an extended education and entered North Central College, Naperville, Ill., where he was a student for several years.
In his early youth, while yet living in Pennsylvania, he gave his heart to God and joined the Evangelical Church. During the period of life's preparation the call to Christian service came very fortunately to him. He consecrated and dedicated his life to the Christian ministry, and was licensed to preach by the Illinois conference of the Evangelical Church in 1881, and entered the active service that same year, which service he was permitted to continue by the grace of God, uninterruptedly for 53 years; of these 37 years as a pastor and 16 years as District Superintendent. Words cannot describe adequately the value of this prolonged service, nor can statistics reveal all the details of of good that has been accomplished. We give God all the honor and glory for a life of such devotion. and consecration to Christian service as reflected in the life of Brother Yeakel. His retirement at the annual conference of 1934, held in Aurora, meant a real sacrifice to him, for he loved the work with all his heart.
It has been his privilege and great joy to serve the following fields of labor and districts: Forreston, as the assistant pastor to the now sainted Bro. Wm. Schmus, form 1881-1882; Fair Haven from 1882-84; Shannon from 1884-87; Forreston ( for a second term) from 1887-90; Naperville from 1890-93; Polo (his home church) from 1893-96; as District Superintendent the Naperville District from 1900-04; Shannon (as Pastor for a second term) from 1904-08; Adams Street Church, Chicago from 1908-10; as Superintendent the Southern District from 1910-14; the Freeport District from 1914-16; the Chicago District from 1916-18; Ashton as pastor from 1918-20; Diversey Parkway, Chicago from 1920-22; Barrington from 1922-26; and Groveland from 1927-1934; from there he retired to Polo his home town.
Four times he served his conference as a delegate to the General Conference in session in 1898 at Johnstown, Pa.,, in 1902 at Wiiliamsport, Pa., in 1906 at Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and in 1910 at Canton, Ohio. He also served as fraternal delegate to the United Brethren General Conference, held in 1913 at Decatur, Ill. He held numerous offices in his conference and served on various boards, indicating the confidence bestowed upon him by his conference.
On October 15, 1896, he was married to Miss Sarah Ellen Wolfe, of Polo, who became a real help-mate to him in his ministry an shared the joys and sorrows of the itinerant life with her husband for over 40 years.
In the spring of 1904 it became his great delight and privilege to visit the Holy Land and attend the World's Sunday School Convention held at Jerusalem. This experience became a constant source of inspiration and blessing to him to the very end of his days.
Brother Yeakel possessed rare qualities of sympathy and kindness, combined with the gift of good judgement and right discernment. He was loved and honored by the brethren and highly respected by the laity; his deep interest in God's cause and Kingdom was an inspiration to many. As a preacher he was brilliant, his sermons positive and practical,. As a pastor he was systematic in his work; as a leader tactful, as a friend sincere and noble minded. His study of the Word of God and its right interpretation probably received his greatest consideration. He loved to preach and to teach; he was a man of deep conviction; a man of prayer.
His years of retirement have been a benediction to both his pastor and members of his church; the entire community mourns the loss of a man of God, who was loved and respected by young and old alike. Being blessed with good health all his life, until recent months, his zeal and ambition for work in God's Kingdom was unabated, assisting in Revival meetings, camp meetings, prayer service, Sunday school work, filling pulpits whenever requested.
His work is done; the armor laid aside; he has entered his heavenly mansion to receive the glorious reward that is assured to all who have faithfully finished the course.. May his example be an encouragement for many to live a better life, and his spirit fall upon a younger generation that needs guidance and wisdom in a world of perplexity and uncertainty.
He leaves to mourn his departure beside his beloved life's companion, two brothers, John Yeakel of Polo, and Dr. W. K. Yeakel of Chicago; one sister, Mrs. Emma Wolfe of Polo; and many other relatives and friends, and those of spiritual relation who will miss his cheering attitude and his comforting words. We mourn, but not as such who have no hope; we are waiting for the dawn of the great Resurrection Morn.
The funeral service was held Friday afternoon at the Polo Evangelical Church, in charge of the undersigned Bishop George E. Epp of the Central Area brought an inspiring message to an appreciative audience. The three district superintendents of the conference, the brethren J. C. Schaefer of the Freeport District, L.C. Schmidt of the Chicago District, and Phil Buescher of the Peoria District, assisted in the service. About 40 pastors and many friends from former fields of service were present. Interment was made at Fairmount Cemetery of Polo. -- J.V. Bischoff
Contributed by Peg Arnold
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