OBITUARY

Raymond A Low

March 25, 1931March 6, 2021

Raymond Low passed away peacefully at home in Duxbury on March 6th surrounded by his wife and children. Ray lived an incredibly full life of faith, service, travel, activism and education, both gathering and bestowing. Known to so many as Father Ray or Father Low, throughout his tenure and beyond, he performed hundreds of baptisms, marriages and memorials, treasuring each one. He was a friend to many, and every friendship meant so much to him.

Born in Melbourne Australia, his mother Lillian (Walker) Leighton died 8 days after his birth, leaving his father Edward Leighton and two young siblings, Valda and Donald. Ray was adopted by his Aunt Mavis (Walker) Low and her husband Roy Low and grew up Melbourne where he became an Aussie rules ‘footie’ fan. He graduated from Ridley College, University of Melbourne in 1958 and was ordained in the Anglican Church the same year. Later, he obtained a Master’s in Education from Boston State College and a Master’s in Family Counseling from Eastern Nazarene College.

Once ordained, he served in the Australian parishes of Oakleigh, Surry Hills and Stratford in Victoria. In 1959 he married a girl from Oakleigh, Joan Looker. After they were married, he and Joan took the S.S. Oriana ship from Sydney to Vancouver and then traveled by Canadian Pacific Railroad across the United States eventually landing in Brockton, Massachusetts where he served as the Curate for St. Paul’s Episcopal Church. Although due to return to Australia after two years, plans changed in 1963 when Ray was called to be the Rector of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Scituate, Massachusetts. Ray and Joan made a home for their family in this seaside town, raising three children and serving 39 happy years at St. Luke’s.

Building community was also extremely important to Ray. He served on the Town Recreation Committee, was the Co-founder of the Scituate Food Pantry, a founding member of Scituate Rotary and Dean of the South Shore Episcopal Churches. As a result of his efforts, in 1993 the Scituate Chamber of Commerce named Ray “Citizen of the Year.” He carried his sense of community to address global challenges as well, becoming President of ‘Search for Justice and Equality in Israel Palestine’ whose purpose was to seek common ground for the reconciliation of the two inhabitants of the Holy Land and traveled there on three occasions. He also took on several other global initiatives, including organizing a trip with Soviet Union students to Scituate during the Cold War.

Anyone who knew Ray knew he also always had the travel bug. And thanks to his wife, who worked in the airline industry for over 25 years, they were able to travel quite extensively. His curiosity led him to visit many European countries as well as Zimbabwe, South Africa, Egypt and Jordan and of course, repeatedly throughout Australia. And, if you were lucky enough to be on Ray’s list, he would send you a post card from every port. On these trips, Ray was known for pulling the car over every time he saw an Episcopal Church and his children believe they have seen the inside of about 99 % of the Episcopal Church’s in the U.S, England and Australia.

Ray retired from St. Luke’s in 2003, but his passion for the Church and engaging with the community led him to continue his work into his 80’s at several churches including Trinity Church in Boston and two engagements in England: Christ Church, Swindon and Wiltshire. He was always keeping up to date on current events, an avid reader and spent countless hours preparing for sermons, including one of the favorites, ‘How to Play Cricket.’ He loved living in Scituate and later in his life he enjoyed going out on his boat on the South River, affectionately named ‘Aussie Rules.’

Ray will be immensely missed, but because he touched so many lives, we will feel his love of people, community and justice onward. He leaves behind his wife, Joan Elizabeth (Looker) Low to whom he was married for 61 years, three children; Janine Beal (Robert), Christopher Low (Jann) and Carolyn Spicer (Michael) and five grandchildren; Douglas, Abigail, Samuel, Sarah and Charles Raymond. In addition, he leaves many beloved nieces and nephews in his home country of Australia.

Due to COVID at this time services will be private. There will be a Memorial Service at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to St. Luke’s Church Memorial Fund, 465 First Parish Rd. Scituate, MA 02066 or the American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem.

Services

No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.

Memories

Raymond A Low

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joe pennington

April 2, 2021

Pleasant memories of being with Ray when I served in Massachusetts. Prayers of thanksgiving for his life and memory. -- The Rev. Joe Pennington, Priest Associate, St. Andrew's Church, Fort Thomas, KY

Alyssa Landry Boulanger

March 15, 2021

Reverend Low accompanied my family through so many of our major life events – from baptizing us in our house before my father died, to officiating at our father’s funeral, to marrying me to my first husband, to years and years later officiating at our mother’s funeral. Despite the time and distance, he somehow always remained a constant in our lives. My childhood memories are full of the good times spent at Saint Luke’s, singing in the choir and later teaching Sunday School, tasting my first Seder supper, going on spiritual retreats, learning and growing with his guidance. The values that I learned from Ray back then have stayed with me throughout my life. My thoughts and prayers are with his family and all who had the honor and privilege of knowing him.

judy bent

March 14, 2021

Father Ray has been such an important part of our family since moving to Scituate in 1971. He always offered a kind word or made a visit to our house, or sent along a helpful book when it was needed most. I have so many fond memories of Father Ray helping us through all of lifes challenges, he was a kind and good human being and will be greatly missed.
My love to Joan,Chris,Janine and Caroline
Judy Bent

Brad Prescott

March 12, 2021

A few words cannot express the measure of the impact Fr. Ray has had on our family’s lives. He has been a guide throughout my life, a comfort to our family through all life’s challenges and a friend. I will always be grateful that God placed him in our lives. A gift to us all. My deepest condolences to Joan and the family as they mourn this loss and my gratitude for their sacrifice of his time and attention while being our shepherd.

Chip McCarty

March 11, 2021

Joan and family,

Deepest sympathies from my father, my sister, and myself at this time. We joined St. Luke’s in 1965 after the church building was completed. Sunday School was still held at the Masonic Hall, but I always looked forward to the one Sunday a month when the children were welcomed at the service at the Church. I served as an acolyte for seven years and Ray’s warmth and his enthusiasm were infectious, even when the 8 AM service drew only a half dozen parishioners. His sermons were often topical, tackling social issues of the day, and always thought provoking. One, “Not to decide is to decide,” has stuck with me for over 50 years.

I moved away after college, but he was the obvious choice to baptize my daughter in 1988, and it was a great comfort to us when he led my mother’s memorial service a year later. More importantly, he repeatedly reached out to my father in the years after her death, even when my father was less than receptive, ultimately helping him dig his way out of his grief and depression.

Ray will be missed by so many. Thank you for sharing him with the world.

Chip, Harry, and Jane McCarty

Dick Murphy

March 11, 2021

My deepest sympathies to the Low family on the passing of Pastor Ray. Ray performed funeral services for my Mother, Alice, in 1967, and in 1969, performed the marriage ceremony for me and my wife Sharon. He was a wonderful friend, Pastor, and person. His was a life of service and devotion well led.

John Lent

March 11, 2021

Ray was a caring and generous supporter of the mission of the American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem (AFEDJ) for years. He traveled to the Holy Land many times and was a passionate advocate for the Palestinian people and the Arab Christian community in the Middle East. He worked to educate others on the powerful Christian witness of the Diocese of Jerusalem humanitarian ministries and their impact on the lives of vulnerable and displaced people in the Holy Land. All of us at AFEDJ hold Ray and his family in our prayers.
John Lent, Executive Director, AFEDJ

JoAnn Evans

March 11, 2021

Ray was a beacon for so many. A minister and a friend, he was simply the best. He is missed but forever in the hearts of all who knew him. Peace to Joan and the rest of the Low family. Hugs and love. JoAnn

Nina Riley

March 10, 2021

I moved to Marshfield looking for a church to join with my young family in 1996. I attended many churches but knew once I met Father Ray I would join St Luke’s. He came to my home and was so welcoming and kind. He baptized my youngest and confirmed my 2 oldest. My family was incredibly blessed to have known Father Ray. He was a true servant of God.

Susan McEvoy

March 10, 2021

Sending love and prayers to Joan and the family. So sad to hear of Ray's passing. I only had the pleasure of meeting him once, but he sure made a great impression! He led a life full of many great adventures.

FROM THE FAMILY