The Rev. Dr. John D. Schule


The Rev. Dr. John David Schule passed on March 12, 2020, after a long battle with cancer. 

courtesy Katrina Daigle

John D. Schule served as the pastor of the Federated Church from 1978 thru 1998, and continued to serve as pastor emeritus as needed. He was an integral part of the Island community. He was able to bring year-round and seasonal parishioners together and grow the church membership. He continued to perform weddings and memorial services until failing health forced him to stop his calling. He helped bring hospice to the Island. He established an interdenominational youth group that made numerous off-Island outings. He was a longtime president of the board of Union Chapel. He brought many diverse ministers, teachers, political leaders, and dignitaries to the Island to preach. He was devoted to serving the Island residents during his 44-year life in Edgartown.

His calling made him build a small chapel at his longtime home near the meadow. As far as it is known, it was the only consecrated private chapel on-Island. He held many services there for family and friends. He held Christmastime gatherings for the church choir in the chapel. The chapel is now open to the public at Featherstone Art Colony.

He is survived by his wife, Elyse Kraft; daughters Katrina Daigle, Heidi Schule-Lewis, and Elizabeth Schule; sons Hans Schule and Patrick Schule; and seven grandchildren, and one great-grandchild. He leaves his sister, Barbara Howland, and two brothers, Robert and Donald. He was predeceased by his brother Gene Schule. 

Because of COVID-19, his memorial service has been delayed until Sunday, Sept. 12, A service will be held at the Federated Church in Edgartown at 1 pm. Also due to COVID-19, the church service will be limited to invited friends and family. A celebration of his life will be held for the public to share memories and stories at 75 South Water St., on the Mayhew Parsonage lawn, at

2 pm. Everyone is urged to be vaccinated, and to adhere to mask and social distance guidelines for unvaccinated or at-risk individuals.

In lieu of flowers, please make any donations to Hospice & Palliative Care of Martha’s Vineyard, P.O. Box 1748, Vineyard Haven, MA 02568.