Charlotte Kessler Briggs, 93, formerly of Mount Joy and Manheim, PA, left this world for her eternal home with her savior, Jesus Christ, on April 24, 2020. Born in Lancaster, she was the daughter of State Senator Edward J. and Charlotte S. Kessler. Her husband of 65yrs, Charles W Briggs, Jr, preceded her in death in 2012.
Charlotte was valedictorian of Manheim Township High School Class of 1943 at age 16, and valedictorian of Oberlin College Class of 1947 at age 19 with a BA in Mathematics. She was a loving mother, an accomplished seamstress, a hard-working preserver of abundant produce from the home garden, and a marvelous cook. She was gracious and humble, a self-sacrificing blessing to her large family, often going without for herself. She came to a personal relationship with Jesus Christ in her late 40’s, afterward serving beside her husband with Mission Aviation Fellowship in Redlands, CA for 11yrs. A member of Gideon Auxiliary and Mount Joy Church of God, she taught adult Sunday School classes there. During her early years in Manheim, she was an active member of St. Paul’s UCC. A faithful reader of her Bible, she was often found whistling or singing her way throughout her day. She was consistent in prayer for her family, friends, her nation and its leaders. Despite all this, she would want you to know that her good life and deeds were not good enough to assure her a place in heaven. “It is by grace we have been saved, through faith, and that is not from ourselves; it is a gift of God, not of works, so that no one may boast.” Eph 2:8-9. She would want you to know that we must each accept personally the free gift of God, which is “eternal life in Christ Jesus, our Lord.” Rom 3:23.
She is survived by six children and their spouses: Kathryn, wife of Dr. John Beres, Chapel Hill, NC; Bonnie, wife of Tim Mateer, Mount Joy; Jessica, wife of Stephen Sechriest, Dover; Melissa, wife of Jim Steele, Cedar Park, TX; Andrew, husband of Janice, Bloomington, IN; and Randall, husband of Cora, Carlisle. She was wonderfully blessed with 23 grandchildren, and 47 great grandchildren, including one who preceded her in death. She is survived by two sisters, Hester Wheelon, 96, Hendersonville, NC, and Sue Danforth, 89, Lancaster.
Due to current public health guidelines, services for Charlotte will be announced at a later date. Interment will be in Manheim Fairview Cemetery. Contributions in Charlotte’s memory may be sent to Mount Joy Church of God, 30 E. Main Street, Mount Joy, PA 17552 or Mount Hope Nazarene Retirement Community, 3026 Mt. Hope Rd., Manheim PA 17545.