The Rev. Canon Jack Crouch, who served the Anglican Church of Canada at all levels, died on July 11 following a brief illness. He was 87.
“He was a great people person,” said Din Oosterban, treasurer of the Ontario provincial synod, in an interview. “He was generous with his time.” Oosterbaan, who served as treasurer in the diocese of Algoma for more than two decades, knew Crouch for 34 years.
In a 1995 article published in the Algoma Anglican, Bishop Rodney Andrews, then executive archdeacon of Algoma, described Crouch as “a great organizer” who loved events that brought people together. Andrews also said that Crouch was an “avid reader” of theology, biographies and murder mysteries.
Before becoming a priest, Crouch worked as a leading air craftsman for the Royal Canadian Air Force, according to an obituary published at The Sudbury Star. He then worked as a draftsman at the Toronto Transit Commission, where he helped plan the Yonge-University-Spadina subway line.
Crouch was active with the Anglican Young People’s Association, and in 1948, enrolled at Trinity College and later, pursued his theological studies at Wycliffe College.
Ordained a priest in 1954, Crouch served at parishes in Christ Church, Bolton; All Saints, Kingsway; St. Bede’s, Scarborough; St. John’s, Copper Cliff; St. Mark’s, Heyden; and St. James, Goulais Bay – all in Ontario.
During the 60s, Crouch worked as rector of St. Barnabas in downtown Toronto, engaging in social action ministries that helped the homeless and disadvantaged. He also led the national church’s youth ministries for four years in the late 60s, facilitating exchanges for young Anglicans from Canada to the Caribbean, for instance.
Crouch served two terms as regional dean of Sudbury, diocese of Algoma. In 1982, he was named honorary canon of St. Luke’s, the diocesan cathedral, and when he retired in 1990, he was appointed canon facilitator for the diocese.
Crouch is survived by his wife, Mary Jane, and children Tim, Stephen, Judy, and James as well as nine grandchildren and one great grandchild.
Memorial services were held July 16 at the Church of the Holy Spirit, in Mississauga, Ont.