Alden E. MATTHEWS

Obituary
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  • "Dear Sallie, Cynthia, Jackie and Ellen - I am so sorry for..."
    - Janet Fairfield Figge
  • "October 18, 2014 It was a privilege to have known Alden. ..."
    - Linda Damsky
  • - Bear (Greg) Bryant
  • - Ailean Lyttle-Bryant
  • "Alden was instrumental in founding the Asian Rural..."
    - JB Hoover
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MATTHEWS, Alden E.

age 93, died on Oct. 8, 2014. A resident of Palm Harbor, Alden lived much of his life in Asia. Born in Chicago, he went as an infant with his missionary parents, Harold and Grace Matthews, to North China where he grew up. He returned to the U.S. to complete his high school education and graduated from Grinnell College in Iowa. He studied at the University of Chicago and graduated from Chicago Theological Seminary, later earning a doctorate. As a young man, he served in the Navy and Naval Reserve as a chaplain. He married Grinnell classmate, Derrith Lovell, studied at Yale and they went to Fuzhou, South China as Congregational missionaries for the American Board in 1947. When the foreigners were asked to leave China after the Communist revolution, they returned to the U.S. He continued studies at Union Seminary, NYC, and they were assigned to the United Church of Christ in Japan. Alden held several positions in Japan, including seminary professor, pastor, and church administrator. He was a member of the League of Women Voters, a Rotarian Emeritus, and member of Crystal Beach Community Church, as well as serving on many prestigious boards in Japan. His autobiography, My Three Worlds, was published in 2007. He is survived by his wife, Sallie Parks; sister, Char (Ken) Keating; and daughters, Cynthia (Tom) Miller, Jacqueline Matthews (Walter Toomes) and Ellen (Jim) Alger; six grandchildren; and nine greats as well as Sheri Parks Cumings and Steven Parks and their families.
Published in the Tampa Bay Times on Oct. 12, 2014