Building on the work and ministry she began in McCormick Theological Seminary’s  AADVENT and Common Ground projects, the Rev. Laura Mariko Cheifetz has accepted the newly created position of director of the Leading Generations initiative for the Fund for Theological Education (FTE), headquartered in Atlanta. Her work with FTE begins March 15.

In her new position, Cheifetz will connect the growing network of pastoral leaders, theological educators and Christian leaders who have participated in FTE’s programs, which aim to increase the number of gifted and diverse young people considering vocations as pastors and scholars.

She will also direct grant activities to support Transition into Ministry (TiM), a Lilly Endowment Inc. program that provides leadership development resources to pastors in their earliest years of ministry, fostering in them pastoral leadership practices that enrich congregational life during the transition from student to pastor.

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Dr. Carl E. Taylor, 93, the son of Presbyterian medical missionaries in India and a founder of the academic discipline of international health, died Feb. 4 from prostate cancer.

Taylor, who grew up in India, graduated from Harvard and returned to India in 1947 as director of Fategarh Presbyterian Hospital, then leading a medical team through the deadly riots of 1947 during the separation India and Pakistan. In 1949 he conducted the first health survey of Nepal, then the most closed country in Asia. Back at Harvard, he completed advanced degrees and in 1952 founded the department of preventive medicine at the Christian Medical College Ludhiana, the first such department in the developing world.

Over the years Taylor worked in more than 70 countries and his students served in more than 100 countries. He was the founding chair of the Department of International Health at Johns Hopkins University, where he served for 48 years, and was instrumental in designing the global agenda for primary health care in the 1960s and 1970s.

Taylor was China Representative for UNICEF from 1984 to 1987 and from 1957-1983 advised the World Health Organization on a wide range of international health matters. In 1972 he became the founding chair of the National Council for International Health.

From 1992 until his death he was Senior Advisor to Future Generations and more recently Future Generations Graduate School, where a professorship is endowed in his name. From 2004-2006 he was Afghanistan Country Director for Future Generations, leading field-based action using 400+ mosques as educational sites for Afghan women, then returning in 2008 to Afghanistan (age 92) to test hypotheses about how “women can, in action groups, solve the majority of their family health problems.”

Taylor is survived by his two brothers, John and Gordon, two sisters, Gladys and Margaret, three children, Daniel, Betsy, Henry, and nine grandchildren. A memorial service will be held Feb. 20 at Brown Memorial Church-Park Avenue in Baltimore.

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Marta Pinaroc Callao, 103, a native of the Philippines who later served the Filipino community in the San Francisco Bay Area and after retirement in southern Idaho with her husband Juan Alfonso Callao, died Jan. 30 in Boise, ID.

The youngest of seven children, Callao came to the U.S. in 1926. She met Juan Alfonso through Christian Endeavor and they were married in 1936, while he was a student at San Francisco Theological Seminary. Following his graduation, the Callaos served pastorates in San Jose and Salinas, Calif., where they reached out to the Filipino community.

Marta also took an interest in the medical field, becoming a certified nurse’s aide and working in hospitals in San Jose Presbytery, where she specialized in infant care. After retiring to Boise, she continued her work by volunteering in area hospitals.

She was preceded in death by her parents, brothers and sisters, husband, Juan Callao, Sr., her sons, Juan, Jr., and Max Callao. Survivors include her daughter, Becky Graham of Boise, her sons Jul Miguel of San Jose and Edgar Miguel of Hillsboro, OR, and their families, as well as many loving grandchildren and great-grandchildren. A memorial service was held Feb. 4 at Boise’s Trinity Presbyterian Church. 

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Carolyn Chaney Atkins, founder of the Menaul Historical Library in Albuquerque, NM, a tireless advocate for the preservation of Presbyterian history, and a mission advocate for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), died Dec. 22, 2009 at age 90 after a brief illness. 

As a full-time church volunteer for more than 40 years, she taught Sunday school, wrote curriculum for the Faith and Life series, worked in United Presbyterian Women and was a ruling elder.  In 1974 Carolyn helped found the Menaul Historical Library to document Presbyterian history in New Mexico, Colorado, Arizona, and Utah.  She served as its director for 18 years.

Atkins was elected to the board of directors of the Presbyterian Historical Society in 1977 and served as its first woman president from 1982-1986.  Carolyn’s passion for Presbyterian history resulted in her editing twelve books on the history of Presbyterians in the Southwest.  In 1985, she compiled the Historians’ Handbook, a guide for historians, historical committees and those interested in preserving the history of the Presbyterian Church. 

A memorial service was held at her home church, St. Andrew Presbyterian Church in Albuquerque, on Jan. 21