Obituary: Judith Wright Favor
Great-grandmother, author, pastor, teacher
Judith Lee Wright Favor, a resident of Pilgrim Place in Claremont, died December 8, 2023 at the age of 83 after being treated briefly for congestive heart failure. She was surrounded by her loving family.
Born on February 25, 1940, in Portland, Oregon, Judith’s life was marked by resilience, spirituality, and a profound commitment to service. She married David Favor, with whom she shared the joy of raising three children and the adventurous pursuit of hot air ballooning. Following their divorce in 1977, she embarked on a transformative path, attending seminary at the Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, California. Her calling led her to pastor United Church of Christ congregations in the San Francisco Bay Area, leaving an indelible impact on the communities she served.
In 1998, she made her home at Pilgrim Place in Claremont, where she continued her spiritual journey. She found love again with Pete Nelson, whom she married in 2007, and together they navigated life until his passing in 2020. Her influence extended far beyond her personal life as a sought-after facilitator and teacher of spiritual direction. Her wisdom touched the hearts of many, as she taught for Still Point at Ghost Ranch, New Mexico, The Claremont School of Theology, and The Religious Society of Friends.
Her legacy also includes her prolific writings, with seven books to her name, including notable titles such as “Spiritual Guide to Sabbath Economics,” “The Edgefielders,” “Silent Voices,” “The Beacons of Larkin Street,” and “Friending Rosie: Respect on Death Row.” She wrote most of her books while a member of the Joslyn Center’s writer’s group in Claremont. She also wrote articles in religious magazines and journals. Her intellectual and creative contributions resonated with a wide audience, enriching the lives of those seeking spiritual guidance and strong characters.
She is survived by her son Michael Favor and his wife Kathy; granddaughter Sarah and husband Eric Gagnebin; great-grandson Jax Gagnebin and her daughter Penelope Wyllie;
son-in-law Doug Wyllie and grandson Finn Gunn Wyllie; stepson Kahlil Nelson; grandchildren Andrew Favor and Melody Favor; brother Bob Wright and his wife Robbie; cousins Lorane Dick and her wife Teri Tompkins, and Wanda Dick Iverson and her husband Al Iverson. Other survivors include nieces and nephews Sigrid Wright (Matt Parisi), Kirsten Wright (Thom Kasten), Johanna Wright (Gabe Blair), Cooper Wright (Namju Choi), Jason Wright (Christine Leonard Wright), Jeremy Wright (Kristy Lombard Wright), and Susi Stryker (Steve Stryker), and many other beloved family members on the Dick and Wright sides of the family.
She was preceded in death by her parents Jim Wright and Mildrid (Dick) Wright; her son, Ray Favor; and brother, Jim Wright.
“An active member of The Claremont Friends Meeting, Judith’s spiritual home, and her residency at Pilgrim Place symbolized her deep connection to community and faith,” her family shared. “Judith was a generous donor to many charities and organizations, in lieu of flowers the family requests that donations be made to organizations and causes close to your heart. And she would encourage you to make it a lifelong habit.”
A celebration of her life will be held at 3:30 p.m. Saturday, January 6 at Decker Hall in Pilgrim Place, 655 Avery Rd., Claremont, CA 91711. Friends and family are invited to join in remembrance of her extraordinary life.