Skip to content

John Lewis Bowie

Rev. John Lewis Bowie, 90, of Raymond, passed away on March 10, 2022, at the Baptist Memorial Hospital in Jackson. Born March 15, 1931, in McCool, John grew up working the family farm with his parents, Sidney Charles and Alma Ruth (Dacus) Bowie; and brothers, Sidney Charles Jr., and Jerry Martin. John had a younger sister, Martha Nell, who died at the age of two.
A 1948 graduate of McCool High School, John was awarded the Associate of Arts degree (1950) from Wood Junior College, Mathiston; the Bachelor of Arts degree (1952) from Millsaps College, Jackson; and the Bachelor of Divinity degree (1955) from the Candler School of Theology, Emory University, Atlanta, Ga. John dedicated his life to ministry, first, in the Methodist Church, and then the United Methodist Church, having been “licensed to preach” in 1948, ordained deacon in 1952, and elder in 1955. After first meeting Gladys Kathleen Flournoy at a young adult fellowship program at Wesley Memorial Methodist Church in Atlanta, the two were married on Sept. 19, 1954, spending the next 40 years moving from parsonage to parsonage and raising their four children. Serving congregations in Weir-McCool, Kosciusko circuit, Sallis-McAdams-Bethel-Salem, Friars Point-Lyon-Coahoma-Jonestown, Houston-Prospect, Tupelo, Batesville-Curtis Union, Corinth, Cleveland, Greenville, Holly Springs-Mount Pleasant, and, finally, Crystal Springs-Mount Pleasant, John and Gladys retired from active ministry in 1994, choosing to reside in Crystal Springs. Since March of 2020, they made their home at Riggs Manor Retirement Community in Raymond.
Throughout his ministry, John was a committed activist for justice for the marginalized and excluded, having a particular passion for racial reconciliation, for supporting 12-step addiction recovery programs, and for encouraging young people, especially women, in ministerial vocations.
John is survived by his wife, Gladys; his children, Sheila Bowie Fowler, of Waynesville, N.C.; Kenneth Scott Bowie (Carrie), of South Bend, Ind.; and Suzannah Bowie Moorman (Steve), of Mont Belvieu, Texas; 11 grandchildren, Eric Dawson, Charles Dawson, Andy Fowler, Anna Lauren Bowie Wilcox, Adam Fowler, John Hunter Bowie, Alex Fowler, Kate Bowie, Austin Fowler, Steven Moorman, Sarah Moorman; eight great-grandchildren; his brother, Jerry Martin Bowie (Vera), of North Little Rock, Ark.; and his daughter-in-law, Debbie Bowie, of Batesville.
He was preceded in death by his sister, Martha Nell Bowie; his brother, Sidney Charles Bowie Jr.; and his eldest son, John Soren Bowie.
A time of worship celebrating John’s life will be at 11 a.m., Friday, June 17, at Crystal Springs United Methodist Church in Crystal Springs, with the Revs. Victoria Leigh White and Milton Allen Mothershed officiating. Stringer Family Funeral Home in Crystal Springs is handling arrangements.
Gifts honoring the memory of John may be made to the following or to a charitable cause of one’s own choosing: Riggs Manor Retirement Community, 2300 Seven Springs Road, Raymond, MS 39154; Friars Point United Methodist Church, 270 Second Street, Friars Point MS 38631; Crystal Springs United Methodist Church, 306 West Georgetown St, Crystal Springs, MS 39059.