Luke Reginald Summers, age 90, passed away Sunday, November 18, 2018, at his home on Sand Mountain, Alabama.
A native of Canada, Bishop Summers began his ministerial journey attending the Church of God Bible School in Canada. Later, he taught at the school one year and pastored one year before going as a missionary to the Virgin Islands in 1949. Luke went on to serve as missionary/youth director in Barbados, Nevis, St. Kitts, Dominican Republic, St. Martins, St. Lucia, Guyana, and Trinidad. He was then appointed as overseer of Dominica and Jamaica/Turks Islands. In 1970, World Missions appointed Luke as superintendent of the West Indies (now the title of field director), a position he held until 1994. Before his retirement, he was also coordinator of special events in the Caribbean.
A man of commitment, compassion, and conviction, Luke’s leadership was known for his love for the people and his love of the work to which he was called. During an 11-year period in Jamaica, reports showed more than 19,000 new members were received into the New Testament Church of God. He left a lasting legacy in the field of education and organizing churches. On a visit to Cuba in 1979, it was a shocking and thrilling experience for the people, as none of them knew him and it was their first visit by a Church of God minister in over 20 years—they wept openly with joy that they were not forsaken and that someone cared.
When asked on one occasion what he would say to the members of the Church of God, Luke’s response was: “Missions work is an integral and very essential part of God’s program. It is worthy of support!”
Luke was preceded in death by his first wife of 38 years, Lois, who faithfully served alongside him on the mission field.
Survivors include his wife of 21 years, Sandra; sons, Jocelyn (John) Summers, Wayne Summers, and Timothy Summers; adopted daughters, Cassie Gilbert and Lisa Smith; five grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren.
Visitation will be held Friday from 4 until 8 PM at the Moore Funeral Home in Trenton, Georgia (11910 S Main St.), and Saturday from 12 Noon until 2 PM at Mountain View Church of God in Bryant, Alabama. Funeral services will be held 2 PM Saturday, November 24, 2018, at Mountain View Church of God, Brad Bridges officiating, and interment in Mountain View Cemetery.
World Missions Director Dr. David M. Griffis and Assistant Director Dr. M. Thomas Propes extend their deepest sympathy to the family of Luke R. Summers.