Pastor Fred Fowler
"And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”
Revelation 21:4 (NKJV)
Pastor Fred Fowler
February 3, 1946 - August 30, 2019
Pastor Fred Fowler went home to be with the Lord suddenly on Friday, August 30. We at First Presbyterian Church Haines City would like to express our deepest sympathy and Christian love to his wife, Carol Fowler, and daughter, Kristin, in the loss of their husband and father Pastor Fred Fowler.
Fred Fowler was born in Tulsa, OK on February 3, 1946 to parents Mary Frances and Earl Fowler. His siblings included older sister Patty, fraternal twin brother Eddy, and younger sister Faith. Born and raised in a Christian family, Fred accepted the Lord as his savior at an early age of 7, while listening to the Holy Sprit at his mother's knee.
Fred attended Tulsa University, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology with a minor in Music Education. He also studied at the Southern California Graduate School of Theology. Fred, an ordained Baptist minister, served for many years with Youth for Christ (YFC), as well as doing youth ministry in Seattle, Tulsa, and Phoenix. He joined the FPC staff in 2016 as our Parish Associate and Life Group Coordinator.
Fred and Carol had a unique courtship. They met on a blind date when Fred traveled to Los Angeles to visit his brother, who taught with Carol at a Christian military academy. Date two took place when Carol flew to Seattle to see Fred (and when he proposed). Date three happened when they went to Arizona to see Carol's parents, allowing Fred to ask her father for her hand in marriage. On date four, they heard wedding bells! Never let it be said that Fred didn't go after what he wanted in life. And they were together for 48 years.
Living their married life in Washington and Southern California, Fred's career involved a varied list of endeavors. He was a youth pastor in Esperance Baptist Church, where he touched so many young lives. This was evident in the 50-year reunion they planned to honor him just weeks before he passed. Attended by over 130 former youth members, the event left Fred speechless.
He ran his own catering business (Palette Pleasers by Fredrick) for 20 years in Seattle. Using family and friends as staff, Fred catered many events, using his flair for drama and elegance to set the stage. He was known for his show-stopping cakes, that served as much for décor as dessert.
For 10 years, Fred worked for Macy's, traveling to stores around the Pacific Northwest at Christmas to decorate the stores and windows for the holidays.
Fred participated in a wedding ministry in Seattle, where he not only counseled couples prior to marrying them, but often allowed them to use his home for a wedding venue. He was proud to say that on July 7, 2007, he performed 7 weddings.
As evident in his work history, Fred had many passions:
Food - His love for food involved both consuming and preparing. Known at times for being a bit of a food snob, Fred enjoyed preparing meals for friends and family, with his special touch going into every detail, from the menu to table decorations to the place settings.
Fashion - If you knew Fred, you knew that he took his appearance very seriously. He could intimidate fellow co-workers with his impeccable style. How it must have bothered him to cast aside style and hygiene to portray Leroy, a homeless person, for sermon research. No wonder no one in the congregation recognized him!
Fun - Fred personified fun. His smile touched so many and turned dark clouds to sunlight. He was just a big kid, himself. He particularly enjoyed participating in VBS, where he felt free to be the character that he was. Fred was not above playing practical jokes on staff. He even went as far as kidnapping a 6-foot stuffed owl donated to the church and held it for ransom!
Family & Friends - Fred had a very special quality of making everyone he encountered feel special. His family meant the world to him. And he was gracious enough to extend that love to include friends, both old and new. Carol said that Fred did not have a hobby like most people; his hobby was people.
Faith - Fred knew he was called to ministry, knew he wanted to be a preacher-boy! Everything Fred did showed his love for Christ. And he shared that love with everyone. A modern-day paraphrase of Matthew 5:16 is "may someone see Christ in you today." That was how Fred lived his life, believing and showing the world the love of God.
"Well done, good and faithful servant."
“I lost a very good friend, one who loved well his Lord, wife, daughter, family and all the saints at FPC. You are greatly missed, Fred”
Fred's family would appreciate memorial gifts given in Fred’s name to help the outreach of the Open Heaven Ministries under the leadership of Pastor Julio Freeman in Holguin, Cuba. Fred was deeply touched by the vision of this ministry, helping to plant churches in the most needy communities of Cuba, as well as working for the transformation of this Communist country with the Gospel. Please make your check payable to First Presbyterian Church Haines City with "Cuba" written on the memo line. All gifts will be hand-delivered to Pastor Freeman since it is impossible to send money to Holguin.