It is with great sadness that we announce the death of the Reverend Robert Frederick Brown, age 88 years, on Wednesday, January 18, 2012. He passed away peacefully in Roseview Manor where he has lived for some time.
Robert was born on March 13, 1923 in Winnipeg, Manitoba. He was baptized in May of the same year in St. James Methodist Church and transferred to St. James Anglican Church soon after. In 1935, Robert was confirmed at St. Alban’s before attending Commercial College.
Robert joined the Canadian Army in 1942, serving as a Signalman with Royal Canadian Corps Signals in England, Italy and Holland. He attended Khaki University in England before returning to Winnipeg where Robert completed his grade 12. He attended the University of Manitoba and took Theology at St. John's College which he completed in 1951. Robert was very active in numerous churches serving as a Student Minister, singing in the church choir and teaching Sunday School. He later became a Deacon before being ordained as a Priest on December 21, 1952. Robert lead and assisted in numerous churches throughout Winnipeg.
In 1958, Robert left the Ministry and joined the government as a Stenographer with the Toronto City Welfare Office. He later received his teaching certificate and went to Alberta taking a job as the Vice- Principal and Teacher-Counselor of the Old Sun Indian Reserve School for the Department of Indian Affairs. While in Alberta, Robert received a special licence from the Diocese of Calgary to perform priestly duties.
Robert received Licentiate in Theology from St. John's College in 1963 before transferring to Sault Ste. Marie, continuing his work with Indian Affairs in 1968. He received a temporary licence from the Archbishop of Algoma District to take services on St. Joseph's Island.
In 1970, Robert transferred to Thunder Bay as an Education Counselor with Indian Affairs. He helped Archdeacon Hinchliffe of St. Paul's Anglican and sang in the Church Choir. He was sent to the Canadian House of Bishops, received his Bachelor of Education from the University of Manitoba before coming back to the Diocese of Algoma.
On May 12, 1983, Robert was married in St. Paul's Anglican Church to Merle, whom he had worked with for many years. In 1987, he retired from the Department of Indian Affairs and became an Honourary Assistant at St. Paul's, a title he held for many years.
At the celebration of Robert’s 50th anniversary of ordination to the priesthood on December 6, 2002, Bishop Ferris presented him with an Honorary Life Membership in the Algoma Church Society and an Endowment Fund contribution of $2000 in his name, from St. Paul’s, Thunder Bay. The honor was bestowed upon him in recognition of long and devoted service as Missionary, Chaplain, Educator, Counsellor and Priest.
Robert is survived by his sister Betty Halliday as well as by numerous nieces, nephews and cousins. He was predeceased by his wife Merle, parents Charles and Millicent Brown and a brother, Wilfred Brown.
Funeral services for the late Reverend Robert Brown will be held on Thursday, January 26, 2012 at 1:00PM in St. Paul’s Anglican Church. Bishop Stephen Andrews will preside and celebrate; the Venerable Deborah Kraft will preach; the Reverend Canon Paul Carr will give the eulogy. Clergy are invited to robe and process. The liturgical colour is white. Cremation will follow with interment to take place in Winnipeg, Manitoba at a later date. Visitation for family and friends will be held on Wednesday evening from 6:00PM until 8:00PM in the EVEREST FUNERAL CHAPEL, 299 Waverley St. at Algoma.
If friends so desire, donations made in memory of Reverend Robert to St. Paul’s Anglican Church or a charity of your choice, would be greatly appreciated.