Parishioners of Union Hill Baptist Church in Brownsboro, Texas, mourned their late pastor and father of five, Trevor Morris, 40, on Sunday three days after the Marine Corps veteran died in a crash on his way to his other job as vice president at Burton Oil Service Operations Thursday.
"We come today to honor Brother Trevor and in doing so we'll be glorifying God," Deacon Bill Wallace told the congregation Sunday, noting that the Morris family "needs their love the most today."
Morris died tragically early Thursday morning when the plane in which he was traveling crashed near Tyler Pounds Regional airport shortly after takeoff.
As parishioners embraced and comforted each other over the loss on Sunday, Wallace said he wanted to operate the service just the way their late pastor did — with openness and acceptance.
"We're so full of love here at this church. We're a small congregation but you cannot find anymore love than you can find through these doors," Wallace said.
The church announced on Saturday via their Facebook page that visitation for Morris will be at Rock Hill Baptist Church on Monday from 5 – 7 p.m. His memorial service will follow at the same location on Tuesday at 10 a.m.
Last Friday, about 300 people gathered at Rock Hill to remember the departed pastor as his parents, Diane and Calvin Morris, greeted them through tears.
"He will always be our pastor," Rodger Stanberry said, according to the Tyler Morning Telegraph. "He's as good as they come. He loved his family and would call on them during church service."
Tiffani Shelby, Morris' sister, reportedly knelt at the altar with tears in her eyes and prayed until her father came and comforted her.
The late pastor lived with his wife, Nafisa, and five children Kylor, Cole, Lane, Cana and Boaz in Murchison prior to his death.
"Y'all, words can't really express what I feel right now. I am grateful for the 15 years I had with this amazing guy, but we had plans for so many more," his heartbroken wife wrote on Facebook early Friday morning.
Morris served as pastor at Union Hill from 2009 to 2012 before moving to Ecuador to serve as an international missionary. In October 2016, he returned to his leadership role at the church again.
"Nafisa and I have a heart for the gospel and seeing the lost come to know and follow Jesus. Because of this passion, our full intention is to spend every day of the rest of our lives working as hard as we can, in His power, to see as many as possible meet Jesus," Morris said on his church's website prior to his death.
Eric Johnson, Baptist Mission Association of America International Missions director, who met Morris through missionary work, told the Telegraph that Morris had a passion for God and his family.
"He loved his wife, gave God the glory and served Jesus. He was a husband, a great friend. He loved to share the message of Christ," he said.