The Reverend Lester E Stephenson, Jr., 76, Scranton passed away Tuesday morning in the Hospice of the Sacred Heart Inpatient Unit, Dunmore. His wife of 41 years is Ruth Ann Meeson.
Born September 29, 1946, in Reading, he was the son of Marian Brown Stephenson and the late Lester E Stephenson. He attended Reading Public Schools and graduated from Reading High School in 1964. Pastor Stephenson went on to earn a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Albright College in 1970 and then in 1974 earned Master of Divinity Degree from the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Gettysburg. His first call to serve was to the St. John’s Lutheran Church in Jim Thorpe from 1974 to 1979. In 1979 he was then called to serve Saint Mark’s Lutheran Church in West Scranton, where he served faithfully from 1979 until 2005.
While serving at Saint Mark’s, he married his beloved wife, Ruth Ann, and they became the parents of Amy and Joel Stephenson. In 2005, Pastor Stephenson was called to serve St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church in Scranton. St. Matthew’s was a consolidation of the St. John’s Lutheran Church, Center City of Scranton and St. Mark’s Lutheran Church of the West Side of Scranton. Pastor Stephenson served there for 11 years retiring on December 31, 2015.
Also surviving are his children Amy Grant and her husband, Jeffrey of Pittston, and his son, Joel Stephenson of Scranton; his beloved pride and joy granddaughter, Hazel Grant; his sister Linda Sweigert and her husband, Karl along with their sons Kurt Sweigert and Gregg Sweigert and his wife, Tanya, and their daughters Courtney and Carleigh; aunts Naomi Reber and Betty Tobias; members of Meeson family Sandra and Ron Collins and their children, Ryan, Elsie, Luke, LeaAnn, Lacee, and Bryce; Richard A. Fagerlin, Jr, and his wife, Theresa, and their children, Amanda, Josh and Emily and Stacey Poniatowski and her husband Jay and their children Julian and Thea; many cousins.
He was also preceded in death by his in-laws, Robert H and Christine B. Meeson, and sister and brother in law Anne Marie Fagerlin and husband Richard.
Funeral services will be held January 14 at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church 232 Wyoming Ave., Scranton, PA at 11 AM officiated and celebrated by Mother Rebecca Barnes, Rector of St Luke’s Episcopal Church.
In honor of Pastor Stephenson’s dedication to serving others, the family requests in lieu of flowers for memorial contributions be made to St. Luke’s Episcopal Church 232 Wyoming Ave., Scranton, PA 18503 or to the Hospice of the Sacred Heart 53 Glenmaura National Boulevard, Suite 120, Moosic, PA 18507
The service will be live streamed for those who cannot attend in person and will be available at the St. Luke’s Episcopal Church Scranton Facebook page
Arrangements have been entrusted to and are under the care and direction of the Vanston and James Funeral Home, Scranton.
To share a memory or to express your condolences to the family please visit the funeral homes website at vanstonandjames.com.