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ABCCONN Remembers: Lowell Hart Fewster

Jun 11, 2020 | ABCCONN Remembers: Obituaries

ABCCONN is saddened to announce the loss of Jennifer Johnson and Lowell Hart Fewster. We cherish their legacies and impact on the organization and send sincere condolences to their loved ones. Memorial and burial information can be accessed below.

Lowell Hart Fewster (1939 – 2020)

Lowell Hart Fewster, 81, died on May 28, at his home at Seabury in Bloomfield, CT, surrounded by his family. Lowell was born April 18, 1939, in Rochester, NY, to J. Donald and Alma Fewster (Hart). His journey continued to Princeton, NJ; Yola, Nigeria; Hartford, CT; and Madison, WI, with return trips to some. A lifelong learner, Lowell earned his undergraduate degree from Princeton University, Bachelor of Divinity from Colgate Rochester Divinity School, and masters and doctorate degrees in Higher Education Administration from the University of Rochester. Passions throughout his life were his faith, peace and justice issues, and his hobby of photography. As an American Baptist Minister, Lowell pursued four distinct careers: pastor, campus minister, seminary administrator, and regional church leader. Lowell prepared for ministry in Rochester at Colgate Rochester Divinity School where he met his wife, Julie (Palmquist), a fellow divinity school student. In 1966, he was called as pastor of the Blue Hills Baptist Church in Hartford. In 1969, Lowell became a campus minister at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. While in Madison, Jonathan (1970) and Sarah (1973) were born. Lowell returned to Colgate Rochester Divinity School in 1976 as assistant to the president and later vice president for administration. In 1991, Lowell was called as executive minister for the American Baptist Churches of Connecticut, based in Hartford, retiring in 2004. Lowell was in one of the first U.S. Peace Corps contingents in Nigeria, serving in the early 1960s. Upon graduation from Princeton and a year at Harvard Divinity School considering a career in ministry, Lowell was unsure what direction he should take. Inspired by President John F. Kennedy’s inaugural address, he charted a new path in the Peace Corps, teaching secondary students for two years in Yola, Nigeria, helping to educate future leaders of a young nation. He was immensely proud that one of his students later founded American University of Nigeria. A talented photographer, Lowell started “making” pictures at age 6, on a second-hand 1917 box camera. He soon moved to other models and continued documenting his life and family trips. He built darkrooms in his Madison, WI, Rochester, NY, and Windsor, CT homes. In retirement, photography became a central focus, including travelling on international photographic expeditions to Guatemala, China, and Morocco, among other countries, and pursuing his interest in photographing disappearing barns in New England and across the country. Lowell organized multiple exhibits of his work, including photos of Connecticut River Valley barns, Cuba, Morocco, and Hartford’s Colt Armory neighborhood. Lowell’s photographs are featured in an award-winning book, “Preserving Old Barns” by John C. Porter and Francis E. Gilman. Lowell is survived by his wife of 54 years, Julie; his son, Jonathan and his wife Victoria Carter of Seattle, WA; his daughter Sarah White and her husband Robert of Queens, NY; his grandchildren Daniel and Annabelle, and two sisters Phyllis Rosser of Manhattan, NY, and Janet Bandur of Woodland Hills, CA. In lieu of flowers, please consider a memorial donation to Foodshare (foodshare.org) or Fotokids (fotokids.org). In the coming weeks, First Church in Windsor (fcwucc.org) will host an online service celebrating Lowell’s life.

Becoming a Beloved Community

In my address to the participants and delegates at the ABCCONN Annual meeting held in September 2021, I invited ABCCONN to imagine a new paradigm of the regional ministry. I preposed that we who make up ABCCONN rethink our priorities by making the relationship with one another the priority.

Baptists have always held relationships as a critical component of our identity. We know this component as the