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Kathleen Thompson Hignight, Former Minister at First Presbyterian Hope

By Mark Keith, 09/29/22 10:53 AM

In life and in death we belong to God. Kathleen Thompson Hignight entered the Church Triumphant on September 28, 2022, surrounded by her family. Kathleen was born on March 7, 1959, to Charles T. Thompson and Mary Ruth Bell Thompson in Texarkana, Texas.

After graduating from Arkansas High, she attended Arkansas College (now Lyon College) being warned to stay away from college men. Despite that warning, she and a senior, Dan Hignight, became close. They married after she received her degree in Social Work, and were blessed with a daughter, Laura, and a son, Joshua.

Kathleen studied Marriage and Family Therapy, which revived an early sense of call to ministry. As a child she mentioned this calling to her mother whose response was “women don’t do that,” so she didn’t discuss it again. The family moved to Austin, Texas, so she could earn her M.Div. from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary. She was ordained a minister in the Presbyterian Church (USA) in 1995. She served as pastor of the 3 Presbyterian Church of Plain Dealing, Louisiana, and First Presbyterian Church, Hope, Arkansas. She served in various capacities in the larger church, including Moderator of the Presbytery of the Pines and Commissioner to the General Assembly.

Kathleen was a member and officer of the Kappa Kappa Alpha sorority, Kappa Sigma Stardusters and Sweetheart, Student Governments of both college and seminary, and was a PEO sister.

She is survived by her husband Dan; daughter Laura and husband Michael Bearden, son, Joshua and wife Karin Gilje; and her heart’s delight– grandchildren Matthew and Mikayla Bearden and Eva Gilje-Hignight; and several nieces and nephews

She was predeceased by her parents; siblings Charles T. Thompson, Jr., Charlotte Thompson Cobb, and Renetta Thompson Gardner.

A memorial service will be announced in the future. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that contributions be made to Presbyterian congregations, or a charity of choice.