It is with regret that we inform you of the death at 1.15 pm on Thursday 22nd February 2018, at Herbert House, Freshfield, aged 88, of
Father Edmund Slowey
Mill Hill Missionary
May he rest in peace
Edmund Slowey was born, one of four boys, on 19th June 1929 in Ashington, Northumberland. His parents were John and Mariella (neé Riddell) Slowey. He did his Secondary education partly at De La Salle College, Sheffield, partly at Freshfield and finally at Burn Hall, Durham, where he took the Oxford Higher School Certificate. He left Burn Hall in 1947 and went to Roosendaal to follow the Philosophy Course there. Edmund entered St Joseph’s College, Mill Hill, in September 1949 for the study of Theology. He took the Perpetual Oath on 2nd November 1952 and was ordained to the missionary priesthood on 13th July 1953 in Olympia, London, by Cardinal Griffin.
After ordination Edmund was appointed to further studies, taking a Master’s Degree in French and Economics at Glasgow University. He was then missioned to Sarawak where he served in various capacities in both Kuching and Miri Dioceses. He was teacher, rector of a seminary, principal of a school and area superior. He also engaged in farming and gardening as he sought to make Marudi mission self-supporting. He cleared surrounding jungle and started, among other schemes, growing nuts and coffee. He served nineteen years in Sarawak before returning in 1975 to the British Region as APF organiser in Leeds Diocese. During this time he enjoyed various hobbies such as gardening, curing tobacco and making his own wine!
After three years Edmund was appointed to New Zealand. There again, he served in many capacities. He returned for home leave in 1996 and, after attending St Anselm’s Diploma Course, was appointed to the British Region to live in Freshfield. During his retirement there he enjoyed working in the garden. He was also interested in stamp collecting. Edmund had been a prolific letter-writer, covering many subjects. Some of these letters were on topics which worried him, but others were very informative with many humorous touches. In 2013 Edmund celebrated 60 years of missionary priesthood and he could look back on many years of service both at home and abroad.
His health caused increasing difficulties as the years passed. He suffered from different ailments as well as loss of mobility. However, he did not complain. He met his various health problems with great patience and had a good relationship with his carers. The last few months Edmund suffered a further very painful development of his skin cancer and a more general decline. For a few weeks he has been bed-ridden. He passed away yesterday in the early afternoon.
The body of Edmund will be received at Herbert House on Monday 5th March at 4.30 pm. The funeral Mass will be celebrated on Tuesday 6th March at 10.00 am, followed by burial in our cemetery.