In Memoriam

Daima Clark (MRE 1967), a scholar in African philosophy and African religious principles, died December 12, 2008. A graduate of UC Berkeley in 1939, she studied at Howard University under Alain Locke and Howard Thurman, receiving a master’s degree in 1941. She was ordained in 1974 by the Alamo Black Clergy.

T. Hoffman Hurle (MDiv 1939), minister at the Fairview Community Christian Church for over 25 years, died on March 11. In 1958, he received the Disciples of Christ Rural Minister of the Year Award. He was co-founder and chairman for 50 years of Christian Church Homes of Northern California, which continues to provide low-cost housing for seniors.

Zdenek Jakub Navratil (MDiv1948), retired pastor of the Evangelical Church of the Czech Brethren, died on June 26.

Shigeo Tanabe (MDiv 1937), who received a Distinguished Alumni/ae Award from PSR in 2008, died on May 6 in Honolulu, HI. Shortly after his ordination to the United Methodist Church, Tanabe and his wife Haru were sent to the Tule Lake Internment Camp. Although given a chance to leave, he chose to stay with his people, knowing that they would be in need of leadership and a guide for their faith.

Joe Thomas, who served PSR as vice president for administration from 1989 until 1994, died July 27. His associa-tion with PSR began in 1982, whenahe became a charter member of the Pres-ident’s Associates; he was elected to the board of trustees in 1984. A native of Tennessee, Thomas graduated from Tuskegee University and received the MA from Rider College in Trenton, NJ. Prior to his appointment at PSR, he was a U.S. Army officer for 20 years and then served for ten years as executive director of the Economic Opportunity Council of San Francisco.

Lee Williamson (MDiv 1979), who served as pastor of the South Hayward United Methodist Church (previously Wesley UMC) until his retirement from parish ministry in 2004, died July 29.    As a key member of the South Hayward parish board, he championed support for refugees and immigrants, affordable housing, non-violence, and multicultural and anti-racist relations and actions. He was a strong supporter and advocate for the Regional Center of the East Bay and persons with developmental disabilities, as well at the LGBTQ community and the Lighthouse Community Center, living out his belief that Jesus called us to struggle for the justice and dignity of all people. He was a leader in the Livermore-based Ecumenical Peace Institute, and he was a regular at the annual protest against the School of the Americas at Fort Benning, GA. In 2004, the City of Hayward awarded him its Lifetime Award for his vast volunteer efforts; in 2009, the United Methodist Church presented him the Bishop Talbert Award for Racial Justice.

Sherwood Eliot Wirt (MDiv 1943), founding editor of Decision magazine and past president of the Evangelical Press Association, died November 8, 2008. He also worked for the San Francisco Examiner and the Juneau (Alaska) Daily Press, and served as a chaplain in the U.S. Air Force. He held PhD degrees in theology and psychology from the University of Edinburgh. Wirt wrote hundreds of articles and over 30 books, including the best seller Jesus Man of Joy, and a highly recognized translation of one of his favorite pieces of literature, The Confessions of St. Augustine. He was the last writer to interview C.S. Lewis before Lewis died in 1963.