Obituary: Bruce Bowles

Bruce W. Bowles, who led the Baptist Church Loan Corporation more than a quarter of a century, died June 24 in Dallas. He was 87.

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Bruce W. Bowles, who led the Baptist Church Loan Corporation more than a quarter of a century, died June 24 in Dallas. He was 87. Bowles was born Oct. 24, 1930, in North Kansas City, Mo., and accepted Jesus Christ as his Savior at age 7. Following high school graduation, he joined the U.S. Air Force in 1951 and was assigned as a C-119 radio operator at Scott Air Force Base in Belleville, Ill. While stationed there, he met Phyllis Uhles. They married Nov. 14, 1952. After military assignments in Arizona and Illinois, Bowles and his family moved to Waco so he could study finance at Baylor University. After graduation and a brief stint with the Buccaneer Stamp Company, the family moved to Dallas where he became an officer with Lakewood Bank & Trust. In 1969, Bowles joined the administration at Mary Hardin-Baylor College, where he led fund-raising efforts and was vice president for college affairs. Four years later, he became president and chief executive officer of the Baptist Church Loan Corporation. He also was founding president of the Texas Baptist Financial Services. Serving on the Baptist General Convention of Texas Executive Board staff with Bowles, who “carried out a multi-faceted ministry as a Baptist layman … was truly a blessing,” said Bill Pinson, BGCT executive director emeritus. “His sense of humor combined with a strong work ethic and commitment to being part of a team made him highly effective,” Pinson said. “He led the Baptist Church Loan Corporation to a huge increase in assets, more than quadrupling its worth, thus making additional finances available to assist churches. Unselfish in his servant leadership of the BCLC, he worked closely with the State Missions Commission in the funding of new churches as well as assisting existing churches. This spirit of cooperation enabled a growing number of churches to minister in the Texas mission field.” Bowles retired in 1999 to spend more time with family and his volunteer interests as a Bible study teacher, deacon, church mission trip volunteer and choir member. “A multitude of persons found abundant life in Christ through the ministry of Bruce Bowles,” Pinson said. Bowles is survived by his wife of more than 65 years, Phyllis; daughter, Cindy Emory; son and daughter-in-law Jeff and Dawn Bowles; five grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

 

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