McMaster Divinity College is mourning the deaths of two exceptional leaders, Dr. Patricia Harvey and Dr. Paul Bates, who blessed the MDC community with their selfless generosity, enduring friendship, and tireless support over the course of many years. Each an exceptional leader in their own fields, Pat and Paul were generous stewards of their gifts and their presence blessed those who spent even a short amount of time with them.
Dr. Patricia Harvey passed away on September 2, 2022, after a six-month illness. Although Pat was a lifelong Hamiltonian, she was an internationally renowned medical doctor in the field of ophthalmology. A leading retinal specialist and researcher who made national and international contributions to her field, Pat was a pioneer in developing treatments for age-related macular degeneration, one of the major causes of blindness among Canadians. For her efforts in treatment of this disease, she was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal by the Governor General of Canada. Not just focused upon her research, Pat was known for providing exceptional care to her patients, advocating on their behalf but also demonstrating kindness and compassion. That kindness was evident in her everyday life, as attested by her friends and colleagues.
Pat was a close friend of McMaster Divinity College, serving as a Board member for the past three years up until her passing, and is fondly remembered by our faculty, staff, and students for her genuinely kind and friendly personality. Her selflessness extended to her great philanthropic spirit, as she generously supported many Christian causes throughout her lifetime. MDC is honoured to be one such cause. Pat supported numerous initiatives at MDC, including sponsoring conferences, funding student aid, and contributing to our building campaign. While her generosity will never be forgotten, her legacy will be the individual impact that she made on each of us who knew her.
Dr. Paul Bates passed away on September 4, 2022. He was a visionary leader with an entrepreneurial spirit, a man of integrity who treated each person he encountered with compassion and respect. Born in East London, Paul had a highly successful career working in banking, finance, and academia, where he gained widespread recognition. He served as a CEO in the capital markets sector and commissioner of the Ontario Stocks Commission (OSC), as well as serving as Dean of the DeGroote School of Business at McMaster University. He had the gift of leadership, which he shared widely as a mentor to many.
In 2013, Paul joined McMaster Divinity College, completing a Master of Theological Studies and teaching in the area of leadership as Assistant Professor of Leadership. He also worked as part of our Development team and was instrumental in the fundraising and eventual completion of our building expansion and renovation project in 2019. A lifelong learner, Paul earned the Doctor of Practical Theology degree in 2020, one of our first two graduates from the program. Paul also served as Special Advisor to the President of MDC and Chair of MDC’s Investment Sub-Committee. Paul will be remembered for his wise advice, sincerity, and jovial sense of humour. He will be greatly missed by all who knew him and benefitted from his time with us.
Their Christian faith was essential to both Pat and Paul, and it was evident in whatever they were doing, whether professionally, institutionally, or personally. When discussing teaching future ministers, pastors, and chaplains to become effective leaders, Paul said, “This may be the most important work that I have ever done.” We are grateful for the lives and ministries of Pat Harvey and Paul Bates and their contribution to McMaster Divinity College.
McMaster Divinity College is a seminary and graduate school in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, educating men and women to serve the church, academy, and society through graduate-level education, spiritual development, and vocational formation. MDC offers masters and doctorate-level degrees in Christian theology, along with a Certificate in Christian Studies. For more MDC news, visit mcmasterdivinity.ca/news or sign up for our email list.