Demetria Marsha Shands, was born to the late Gilbert and Texie Ann Shands on August 28, 1963 in Baltimore, Maryland. Demetria peacefully departed this life May 1, 2020, after a struggle with the COVID 19-virus.
Demetria affectionately known as Meechie was raised with strong Christian values by her mother and grandparents Willie and Leola Gooch on Riggs avenue in west Baltimore. She loved the Lord and dedicated her life to His service at an early age. She was baptized at St Mark’s Institutional Baptist Church under the leadership of the late Pastor Spencer G. Dobson. Demetria attended St Mark’s Institutional Baptist Church most of her life. As a youth and young adult, she sang on the choir and attended Sunday school. God was always the driving force in her life so much so that while a disciple of St Mark’s she accepted the call from the Lord to preach the gospel.
Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction. 2 Timothy 4:2
On December 15, 2013, Demetria was ordained a minster under the leadership of the late Pastor Reginald W. Lawrence. Demetria’s love for people, led her to serve in many capacities at St Marks. With the Lord as her guide she was the Assistant Pastor of the Evangelism and Outreach ministry, a Trustee and Chairperson of the Convalescent Ministry.
“Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that need not be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Timothy 2:15. She enriched her knowledge of the bible by obtaining certificates of Christian education from correspondent Bible study programs.
Demetria was educated in the Baltimore City Public school system. She was a graduate of Walbrook Senior High School. After high school she became a Certified Nurse’s Aide and a Geriatric Aide.
For twelve years she worked at area hospitals and nursing homes in these professions.
Meechie was quite savvy with computers. She used her computer skills at St Mark’s Institutional Baptist to create, obituaries, flyers, and church programs. She also used this talent as a Fiscal Assistance II at a methadone clinic where she worked until her health began to decline.
Meechie loved to watch football, especially Baltimore Raven’s football. She enjoyed video games, pinochle and family get together. A Maryland steamed crab didn’t stand a chance when she was around.
She was a quiet and shy spirit except when talking about the Lord. She used the Holy Spirit to rise above her shyness. After she stop working in the public sector, she did the Lord’s work by preaching and ministering to those she met. At the time of her transition she was attending and ministering at Community Life at the Towers under the leadership of Bishop James Kent.
She is preceded in death by her parents and Brother Timothy.
She leaves to cherish her memory Three sisters: Vashtine Jasey (Calvin), Terri Merchant, and Wendy Merchant (Charles). Two brothers: William Merchant and Anthony Merchant. Nephews and niece Artinus T. Shands, Yvonne Nicole Sassafras and Tarvaris T. Shands (Theatra), One Aunt Loistene Parham (Gazzater), Two Great-Aunts: Florine Jones and Nellie Person. Special sister-cousins who have given a lifetime of support Georgia Bowens, Cheryl Smith, and Michele Brooks. A special friend Vanessa Molock, and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, family, and friends.
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