Rayann Cummings (March 26, 1938 - December 17, 2023)

In loving memory of
Rayann Cummings
  • March 26, 1938
  • -
  • December 17, 2023

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Reverend Rayann Burnham Cummings, age 85, died on December 17, 2023, at Discovery Village at the Forum in Fort Myers, Florida.

Rev. Cummings is survived by her son, Stuart Tilman Haines of Madison, Mississippi, and her grandchildren, Jacob Haines Ehrnstein of Denver, Colorado, Nicholas Haines Ehrnstein of Austin, Texas, Samuel Haines Ehrnstein of Austin, Texas. She is preceded in death by her daughter, Melony Lynn Haines Ehrnstein of Napa, California.

Rayann Burnham was born on March 26, 1938 in South Paris, Maine, to parents George Raymond Burnham and Mariam (Welch) Burnham. She graduated from Falmouth High School in Falmouth, Maine, in 1956 and attended Gorham State Teachers College (later renamed Southern Maine University), graduating with her Bachelor’s in Education in 1960. She married Ronald James Haines of Rangeley, Maine, moved to East Hartford and later East Hampton, Connecticut, and accepted a position as a middle/junior high school teacher in East Haddam, where she worked for 16 years. She earned her Master of Arts in Teaching degree from the University of Connecticut in 1972. She divorced Ronald Haines in 1976.

In 1981, she returned to school full-time, attending the Andover-Newton Theological School in Andover, Massachusetts, earning a Master’s in Divinity degree, and becoming an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ in 1984. Over the next 20 years, she served as the pastor of several churches, including the Paris and Deansboro Congregational Churches in Upstate New York, the Church in the Cove in Beverly, Massachusetts, and the Mayflower Congregation Church in Sioux City, Iowa. She retired to Ft. Myers, Florida in 2004.

In 1985, she married John Augustus Cummings, Jr of North Andover, Massachusetts. The couple later divorced in 1995.

Rev. Cummings was actively engaged in community life, leading many interfaith community service activities, and she was particularly concerned about gun violence in our society. Rayann was fond of attending choral concerts and live theatre, having season tickets to cultural ventures in every city she lived. She spent her summer vacations in Maine at her family cottage on Little Sebago Lake in North Windham, Maine, where she welcomed family and friends for nearly 60 years.

A memorial service will be held at the Fort Myers United Church of Christ, 8210 College Parkway, Ft. Myers, Florida on January 20, 2024 at 10am. All are welcome to attend and celebrate Rev. Cummings’ life. In lieu of flowers, please consider giving a charitable donation to Sandy Hook Promise (https://www.sandyhookpromise.org/who-we-are/about-us/).


United Church of Christ
8210 College Parkway, Ft. Myers

Date & Time:
January 20, 2024 at 10:00 AM

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