Raymond H. Birkel

Pastor Raymond H. Birkel, 85, of Southold passed away peacefully Sept. 22, 2016, at the Center for Hope Hospice in Scotch Plains, N.J., after his battle with pancreatic cancer.

He was born in Queens, graduated from Gettysburg College, served in the U.S. Air Force and upon graduation from Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia, was ordained as a Lutheran pastor in 1961, serving for over 55 years. Raymond founded Abiding Presence Lutheran Church in 1963 and serviced the local community and surrounding Long Island area until his retirement in 1993, when he and his wife, Mary, retired to Southold.

Raymond is survived by his three children, Jonathan, Timothy and Mary Elizabeth, and his beloved eight grandchildren.

A memorial service and committal will be held at 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 15, at Abiding Presence Lutheran Church, 4 Trescott Path, in Fort Salonga.

Memorial donations in his name may be made to Abiding Presence Lutheran Church, or to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, 1275 York Ave., New York, NY 10065.

This is a paid notice.