April 16, 2020
The NTS community mourns the passing of Dr. James Hamilton, Emeritus Professor of Pastoral Theology at Nazarene Theological Seminary. Dr. Hamilton died in Eckert, Colorado, on April 4, 2020.
Born on February 28, 1926, in Duncan, Oklahoma, Hamilton began his ministry in 1949 as a pastor in Jacksonville, Florida, and later served as a pastor in Delta and Denver, Colorado. His pastoral ministry spanned 12 years.
He was Chaplain and Associate Professor of Religion at Point Loma Nazarene University (formerly Pasadena College), San Diego, California, from 1961 to 1968. Dr. Hamilton joined the NTS faculty in 1968 under President Eugene L. Stowe. Hamilton began as associate professor of pastoral ministry and supervisor of field service, and was later promoted to professor of pastoral theology, a position he held until his retirement in 1989.
“Dr. Hamilton left a remarkable legacy of influence in the lives of his students here at NTS,” said Dr. Jeren Rowell, current NTS president. “We regularly receive stories from pastors who were shaped by his teaching and by his personal care for them. Dr. Hamilton’s understanding and expertise in pastoral care and counseling equipped generations of pastors for these critical tasks of pastoral ministry.”
Hamilton deeply valued higher education, having graduated from Southern Nazarene University, Fort Hays State University, Western State College of Colorado and the University of Denver with degrees in philosophy, theology, social studies, and a doctorate in counseling. He also completed post-doctoral studies at Fuller Theological Seminary and at the University of Southern California.
He had numerous speaking engagements and conducted seminars in 43 states, four Canadian provinces, England, and Germany, addressing topics such as communication, stress, grief, depression, self-esteem, family relationships, and conflict management. He was the speaker in hundreds of churches, ministers’ conferences, and laypersons’ retreats. He taught in undergraduate masters and doctoral degree programs, and has lectured in 12 colleges and universities in the United States, Canada, England, and Germany.
He was a clinical member of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy and, before retirement, a long-time member of the American Psychological Association.
Dr. Hamilton authored eight books: The Ministry of Pastoral Counseling, Directions, Harmony in the Home, The Pair in Your Parsonage, The Faces of God, Fundamentals of Christian Counseling, Pieces of Life, and Reaching Skyward.
He was preceded in death by his first wife, Dorothy Hamilton, in 1999, and his second wife, Nan Hamilton, in 2010.
He is survived by a brother, Jack Hamilton; a daughter, Carol Reed, and her husband, Philip; a son, Galen Hamilton, and his wife, Patricia; a son, Mark Hamilton (a 1976 NTS graduate), and his wife, Roxie; a daughter, Lisa Hamilton; eight grandchildren; and one great-grandson.
View the obituary and send condolences here.