Written by Bennett Guess
A new endowment fund to honor the Rev. Teruo "Terry" Kawata, former Hawaii Conference Minister, has been established by UCC-related Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, Calif. The primary beneficiaries of the endowment will be Pacific Islander and Asian American communities.
Kawata, who received his Doctor of Ministry degree from PSR in 1981, initiated the development of a theological education program in Hawaii to serve Hawaiian pastors who wanted a formal theological education.
He also helped to launch a similar program at PSR for Samoan pastors from Hawaii and on the U.S. mainland.
Among the program's graduates are the Rev. To'o'o lefua Paogofie of Nuu Lotu Congregational UCC, who was one of the first to complete the degree program.
Kawata also helped to restart the Micronesia Pastors School that had been inactive for 20 years.
As a trustee and adjunct faculty member at PSR, Kawata also served as pastor of Silliman University in the Philippines as well as in churches in Hawaii including Nuuanu Congregational UCC; Waiokeola Congregational UCC; Community Church of Honolulu, UCC; and Iao Congregational UCC on Maui.
PSR's Institute of Leadership Development and Study of Pacific and Asian North American Religion (PANA) will administer the fund.
For more information, contact the Rev. Wallace Fukunaga at firstname.lastname@example.org.