The Funeral Service for Bishop Lowery will be held Saturday (August 8th) at 11 AM at the James W. Warren Citizens Center. Burial will follow at Gold Hill Missionary Baptist Church Cemetery on Old Plank Road. The body will lie in state from 2-4 PM Friday (Aug. 7th) at the Ebony & White Funeral Home on East Pine Street in Lincolnton. Due to COVID-19. masks are required. Survivors include his wife, Elder Sylvia B. Lowery; two sons, Toriano (wife-Nerissa) Lowery, Justin (wife-Kristen) Lowery; his mother, Mary A. Lowery; two brothers, Rev. Lewis Lowery and James Lowery; one sister, Celeste (Lisa) Frazier; and four grandchildren, Jeremiah, Heaven, Phoenix and Karys. Ebony & White’s Funeral Service of Lincolnton, N.C. is serving the Lowery family.
Dr. Stanley Spence, Pastor First Baptist Church, Lincolnton, N.C.
There are few people who understand the risks, passions and challenges of ministry besides those who serve in the ministry. Bishop Franklin Lowery was a giant in this role of life. As Pastor of Gold Hill Baptist Church in southeastern Lincoln County, Bishop Lowery was larger than life. He stood for the right whether popular or not, whether easy or not, and whether beneficial to self or not. I have served with him for a number of years on the YMCA Diversity Committee. I have heard his heart expressed more than one time in a desire to uplift and edify his fellow human beings. He would stop and speak with me in the parking lot after meetings and share reflective ideas on relations with God and others and how we could make a difference. I found him to be deeply insightful and sensitive to the Spirit of God. This is a sentiment echoed by my ministerial peers who knew him as I did, love and respect.
When he shared in the Lenten lunches hosted by First United Methodist Church, we were all blessed. He lifted us to see and feel more than we had seen and felt before he shared. His infectious energy made us all better people when we were around him. He brought dignity to our community and stood firm for the cause of Christ. I didn’t know so much about his athletic past and his achievements as a coach. But I knew what was important to him—Jesus Christ, as Lord and Savior could get him excited. His family was right next to his Lord. I remember words of encouragement and support given to me during some particularly challenging times in my ministry. He loved the people around him and it showed.
I was reading the story of Moses and Jesus through the Gospel of Matthew and recognized what made Franklin so great. Matthew, the gospel writer was going on about how Moses was good but Jesus was better; Moses was great but Jesus was greater. Eventually, the hiddenness came to light that separated Jesus from Moses apart from being God with us. Jesus loved the people who crushed in upon him when he was in a deserted place for rest and privacy. Jesus loved them when they needed answers to their questions. Jesus loved the people even when they were sinful, so much that he laid down his life for them, for us. That’s what made Bishop Franklin Lowery so much like Jesus. He loved the people! He loved them enough to tell them the truth. He loved them enough to walk with them in hard times and rejoice with them in good times. The difference in leaders and great leaders is their love for those they serve. Franklin loved those he served. We will miss his words of faith and challenge. May we pick up the mantle he laid down and show the Grace of Jesus in our community like Bishop Franklin did. He is my friend for whom I am eternally grateful. Rest in eternal peace, my Brother.
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Thank you Dr. Stanley Spence for writing about the heart of Bishop Lowery. He was an awesome Mentor and Man enough to tell you what was on his mind. Being with him in the “Round Table of Ministers” started by Brother Jamel Farley, Bishop Lowery’s voice carried a lot of weight.. Yes he will certainly be missed and remembered.