April 26, 2018

In Honor of the Rev. Dr. Til Evans

It is with deepest sorrow that we share the news of the death of the Rev. Dr. Til Evans. She passed away in the early morning of April 19, 2018, at the age of 95.

Born in England, Dr. Evans came to the United States in 1946, shortly after training to be a nurse and midwife during World War II. She began teaching at Starr King School for the Ministry in the mid-1970s, prior to her ordination in 1979 at the Mt. Diablo Unitarian Universalist Church, where she served as Director of Religious Education.

“Til was mentor to a generation,” in the words of Starr King President Rosemary Bray McNatt. She touched the lives of countless students, represented Starr King on the Religious Education Advisory Committee, and served as the school’s Interim President in the late 1980s, before the Rev. Dr. Rebecca Parker arrived to lead the school in 1990.

Til’s passion for Starr King’s mission and community was best expressed in her 1993 Reflections on Teaching Religious Educators, which is posted to a blog by the Rev. Richard S. Gilbert, Starr King Honorary Degree Recipient (1985):

On April 24, 2018, a candle is lit in honor of Til Evans during Tuesday Chapel at Starr King.

“People come to Starr King School wanting something for themselves: a place, a community, a sense of belonging, an identity, a sense of direction, an opportunity to learn new things, a place to say what they know, a sense of themselves embedded in history. And much more. They bring with them knowledge of the world to a greater or lesser degree, lived experience of loss and regret, joy, competence, pain, abundance and scarcity, and a variety of technical skills. And much more. They come to be educated and to educate, in the larger sense of that word… Teaching is a life-affirming activity. This affirmation of life is at the core of religious leadership. We all struggle with this commitment to life in all its fullness. For most of us it is a lifelong endeavor.”

Ever grateful for her contributions to Starr King, we hold Til Evans’ family and colleagues in our hearts and prayers.

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