First Lady April Ratcliffe was born in Louisville, Kentucky. She grew up in the Lee Harvard area of Cleveland, Ohio. She is a graduate of Kent State University with a B.A. in Psychology. It was while attending Kent State University that she met her future husband, Pastor Walt. It was through this union that three children were born, daughters Cheryl and Christian, and son Ray. She is a Licensed Social Worker and presently serves as a Bereavement Coordinator at an area hospice facility.
First Lady April came to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ early in her life. She has a meek and quiet spirit. She never seeks attention, and is humble in all that she does.
First Lady April is active in the Women’s Ministry of Good Shepherd Baptist Church. God has given her a passion to start a food and clothing bank at Good Shepherd to meet the needs of those who are without.
Pastor Ratcliffe believes that after Jesus, First Lady Ratcliffe is the best thing that ever happened to him. She is the wind beneath his wings, the love of his life, his college sweet heart, and the most important person in his life.
First Lady April truly has all the qualities needed to be the first lady of a church. She is faithful to God first, her husband next, her children, and her church. Read this poem about her character.
First Lady April’s life exemplifies the Proverbs 31 woman: “A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies. Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value. She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life. She selects wool and flax and works with eager hands. She is like the merchant ships, bringing her food from afar. She gets up while it is still dark; she provides food for her family and portions for her servant girls. She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard. She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks. She sees that her trading is profitable, and her lamp does not go out at night. In her hand she holds the distaff and grasps the spindle with her fingers. She opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy. When it snows, she has no fear for her household; for all of them are clothed in scarlet. She makes coverings for her bed; she is clothed in fine linen and purple. Her husband is respected at the city gate, where he takes his seat among the elders of the land. She makes linen garments and sells them, and supplies the merchants with sashes. She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come. She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue. She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her:
Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.” Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. Give her the reward she has earned, and let her works bring her praise at the city gate. Proverbs 31:10-31 (NIV)