The Revd David Tuck writes:
DR PAT PAGE, who died on 27 July, aged 89, was an American lay
theologian whose life touched Anglicans on five continents.
Born in Maine, she graduated from Smith College, Massachusetts,
and soon returned there as a lay chaplain, when the poet Sylvia
Plath was a student. Just after Zambian independence, Archbishop
Oliver Green-Wilkinson invited her to head the church's
Christian-education department there. She made a great
contribution, and many lay initiatives that she began continue to
enrich that Church.
Her quiet and generous support from her private resources opened
doors to secondary and higher education for several African
students during those years.
After Zambia, Pat studied at King's College London for a year,
and then undertook doctoral studies at New York University. There
followed a rich period of teaching in theological colleges around
the world, including Ripon College, Cuddesdon, General Seminary in
New York, and Nanking in China.
Her last post was as a professor at Berkeley in California,
during which time she organised an important international
conference in Hawaii on Roland Allen. In recent years, in South
Carolina, besides working as a doughty fighter for racial justice,
and serving on the national Methodist-Episcopalian unity
commission, she was an active member of her retirement community at
Croesdale Farm, Dyrham, and continued her worldwide travels.
Severe scoliosis was perhaps the reason why she never married,
but her lifelong single state made possible her extraordinarily
rich network of friends round the world. My wife and I first knew
her when we were serving with USPG in Zambia, and we treasured her
frequent visits to us in Britain. But she also knew, independently
of my friendship, two of my former curates, and my brother.
She will be mourned by her many friends, and remembered for
helping us to see that there is no higher calling than that of the
lay Christian in the world.