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Clarence Keith WRIGHT

1931 - 2015
Clarence Keith WRIGHT Obituary
WRIGHT, The Reverend

Dr. Clarence Keith

The Reverend Dr. Clarence Keith Wright - even though he never liked to use the 'Dr.' part, passed away on January 9, 2015 in Austin, TX at the age of 83 after a very brief illness. DAd was born in Laredo, TX to Emma and Clarence Wright on August 20, 1931. Dad was great at making a church run, but his favorite parts of being a minister were visiting with members, new and old, and taking care of the human side of religion. There are numerous members in the church that would not be there today if not for the home visit and personal care that made the church a family. Recently Dad was working on a new movement in the church called "Charter for Compassion. This is going to be his lasting gift to the world when we all take and move this forward.

Dad always stated his height as 5'5. The ruler he used may have been as generous as his heart and the grace and intelligence with which he engaged everybody he met. All who knew him will miss him greatly. Among those who will miss his sparkle the most are his surviving family, including his wife Mona, his three children Joanna, Laurie (husband Wayne), Stuart (wife Sophia), grandchildren Robert (wife Kerrie, children Kyliegh and Cody), Keith (wife Ashley and stepson Lane), Haven (daughter Ashley), Megan and Ryan.

Keith's mother passed away early in his life, so he lived a few years with his Aunt Toadie and Uncle Leo Wright in San Marcos, TX. He later rejoined his father and new stepmother Alice Adami in 1941 in Robstown Texas where his accomplishments were both academic and athletic. He was Salutatorian of his high school class of 1949, captain of the track team, and played football. He attended Austin College, where we are not sure whether his greatest accomplishment was graduating cum laude in 1953, or meeting his future wife Mona Roberts, who he married in 1955. He continued from there to attend Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, where he received a Master of Divinity in 1956, and later a Doctorate of Ministry in 1986 with the love and support of his congregation, and then the Distinguished Alumni Award in 1992.

Immediately following his graduation, he started his service to the Church as the Minister of Education at First Presbyterian Church in Lake Charles, LA. He then had the opportunity in 1959 to become the Organizing Pastor of St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church, also in Lake Charles. The family moved to Austin, TX where he became the Pastor of Faith Presbyterian Church, after Dad served two years in a church in Lubbock TX. The extended family he found in Faith Church was loved and led by him for 26 years until his retirement in 1993. Since ministers never really retire, Dad continued to devote his time as Interim Associate Pastor for many churches, providing service whenever needed. He found a renewed calling and loving worship family as Parish Associate at University Presbyterian Church in Austin TX. Dad's influence extended beyond his congregations, as he also wrote three books: Religious Abuse, the Hell that Jesus Never Intended, and An Old Pastor Shares his New Faith.

The entire family has tried to sum up how we feel about our luck at having such a wonderful father, grandfather, and great grandfather in our life - the only word we can come up with is "WOW." We strive to take his heart with us in our daily lives and live up to this wonderfully spiritual, logical, caring, compassionate and humorous beam of light.

A Celebration of Life and Love will be held at 2 o'clock on February 15, 2015, at University Presbyterian Church, 2203 San Antonio Street, Austin, TX. In lieu of flowers the family asks for contributions to be sent to Uplift (University Presbyterian Church, (upcaustin.org) or Faith Food Pantry (Faith Presbyterian Church, (faithpresaustin.org).
Published in Austin American-Statesman from Jan. 18 to Jan. 19, 2015
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