Rest in Peace, Rise in Glory: September 9, 2020

These obituaries were published in the 9/6 print edition of TLC.

The Hon. James Elvis “Jim” Bradberry, a long-serving lay leader in the Diocese of Southern Virginia and the wider Episcopal Church, died July 25, aged 80.

An attorney and judge by profession, Bradberry served many terms as warden and vestry member at St. George’s Church in Newport News. He chaired several committees that studied the future of the Diocese of Southern Virginia’s Camp Chanco in the 1970s, and eventually help to guide the process of relocating the camp from its original site to its current location in Spring Grove. In 1995, he was one of the founders of Camp Wakonda, the diocese’s summer camp program for kids and families infected with or affected by HIV/AIDS.  His work with Camp Wakonda continued for 14 years until 2009.

He served as a deputy to the General Convention for the Diocese of Southern Virginia from 1988 until 2006, participating in seven General Conventions.  He also served as a member of Executive Council for six years, from 2000 until 2006.

During a long career at the bar and the bench, Bradberry served in the Army’s Judge Advocate General Corps, as a prosecutor in the Commonwealth Attorney’s office in Newport News and was in private practice.  In 1991, he was appointed as a Magistrate Judge for the Eastern District of Virginia’s federal court.

Bradberry was preceded in death by his wife, Elaine, and is survived by two children, four grandchildren and a host of friends across the country.

The Rev. Canon George Luck, a gifted teacher and spiritual director who served central Texas parishes for 61 years, died July 23, aged 87.

Born in Houston, Luck grew up in Fort Worth, and prepared for the ministry at the Philadelphia Divinity School. Ordained in 1958, he began his ministry as priest in charge of St. Thomas Church in Ennis, Texas, and would go on to serve other Texas parishes in Kaufman, Forney, Arlington, Pittsburg, Dallas, and Fort Worth, before serving nine years as rector of Holy Trinity in Rockwall.  In 1997, he was made an honorary canon of the Diocese of Dallas and he assisted in various capacities at St. Matthew’s Cathedral in Dallas in retirement.

Canon Luck assumed several positions of leadership within the Diocese of Dallas, serving on the commission on ministry and as chair of the standing committee. He taught Old Testament and spiritual theology at the diocesan training institute, now called the Stanton Center for Ministry, for over 40 years, and continued to be a valued mentor to many clergy until the time of his death.

After the death of his first wife, Jane, he married the Rev. Diana Nelson Fricke, who joined him in ministry at Saint Matthew’s Cathedral. He and his first wife raised three children, the Very Rev. George Luck, David Luck, and the Rev. Mary Luck Stanley. They also grieved the deaths of two infants, Mary Katherine and Diane Louise.

“George was friend, Scripture teacher, counselor, pastor to so many clergy,” said Dallas Bishop George Sumner. “He reminds of the true nature of spiritual authority which he exemplified.” The Rev. Rebecca Tankersley remembered, “I have known Father Luck for over 20 years, during which time he has been my priest, my spiritual director, and my mentor,” she said.  “He taught me how to be a Christian, how to be an evangelist, how to discern God’s call in my life, and how to be a priest. He will be deeply, deeply missed.

The Rev. Philip David Schaefer, who had a long ministry to small town parishes, died July 25, aged 85.

A native of Toledo, Schaefer graduated from Denison University and Berkeley Divinity School, and was ordained to the priesthood in 1961. He first served as curate of St. James Church in Painesville, Ohio. He went on to serve congregations in Georgetown and Aliquippa, Pennsylvania, and was rector of Church of the Incarnation in Penfield, New York for 13 years. He then served as chaplain of the Episcopal Church Home in Rochester, New York, and engaged in hospice ministry.

Schaefer was also active in the Penfield and Fairport Lions Clubs, the Penfield Democratic Club, and Metro Justice of Rochester, and he enjoyed outings with a local hiking club.  He is survived by Elsa, his wife of 61 years, and by four children, nine grandchildren, and seven great-grandchildren.


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