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Becoming an author helps fill a need
The Rev. Catherine Mathis has a lot on her plate these days.

Even though she is juggling being pastor at St. Paul A.M.E. Church, 1520 Wolfe St., Brunswick, with delivering sermons at another church Sunday nights and a religious puppet show that sometimes takes her on the road as far as Texas, she has added being an author to her already heaping plate.

Her children's book, "It's Your Big Day," was published March 1.

"People from everywhere have called saying, 'I didn't know you were an author,'" said Mathis, who lives in Jesup, where she was born.

Ironically, neither did Mathis know she had an author in her. She never had any intention of her own to write a book, because it was all in God's hands.

"The Lord just told me what to write down, and I did," Mathis said. "I know this book was placed in my lap by God."

The book is about a child who thinks his family has forgotten his birthday, but, with a twist at the end, the child realizes his family might not have forgotten it, after all.

It serves to teach children and adults the importance of family, something many families need nowadays.

Serving the needs of people is nothing new to Mathis. Her adult life has been that way.

For 10 years, she was a respiratory therapist, helping people with their lung and heart functions. She then moved on to become a restaurant manager for 10 years, where she helped meet people's dining needs.

After 20 years, Mathis found her calling meeting the religious needs of people.

"I really didn't know what I wanted to do, but I knew I wanted to help people," said Mathis, who is in her 50s. "I was called to serve people."

Mathis is married to Johnny Mathis, who is also a minister in Brunswick, and they have three adult sons.

She received a bachelor's degree in religion from St. Leo University in 2011 and is working on a master's degree in religion from the Interdenominational Theological Center, based in Atlanta.

Before the year is over, Mathis hopes to have her second children's book published, "Can You Help Me Find Me," about a little girl and her shadow.

"I never thought I would be an author, and now it's a another career for me," Mathis said. "(God) had this great call on my life, so I followed the path, and my life has not been the same."

* Coastal People appears Mondays. Contact Martin Rand III at mrand@the, on Facebook or at 265-8320, ext. 324 to suggest a person for a column.

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