RIP: Alice Garrick, longtime women’s leader in the Anglican Church of Pakistan, dies at 61

By ENS Staff
Posted May 31, 2024

[Episcopal News Service] Longtime leader Alice Garrick, 61, of the Diocese of Raiwind in the Anglican Church of Pakistan passed away on May 27, according to an announcement from the Anglican Communion Office.

“Members of the International Anglican Women’s Network have paid tribute to her life and work. She was hugely valued throughout the Anglican Communion, and many will remember her tireless efforts as she crossed the world organizing support for the women she cared so deeply about,” the May 28 announcement said.

Garrick served over 27 years, more recently as executive director, with the Women’s Development and Service Society in the Anglican Church of Pakistan in the Diocese of Raiwind. She was born on Oct. 16, 1962, in Lahore. She earned both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in psychology at the University of Punjab, and from there went on to teach high school before joining the development society. She married Aslam Garrick in 1993 and together had three children.

“Alice was and will continue to be an inspiration to many. Her passion, tenacity, and commitment to the women of Raiwind and beyond was unwavering,” said Mandy Marshall, the Anglican Communion Office’s director of gender justice. “She is an example to us all on what can be achieved when putting your faith and passion into action. She will be dearly missed by IAWN and all who had the privilege to meet her.”

During her time at the Women’s Development and Service Society Garrick focused on four major areas:

  • Human Rights: The Church of Pakistan’s efforts to prevent the forced conversion and marriage of women and girls.
  • Human Trafficking: The church’s effort to combat the selling of Hindu and Christian women and girls into prostitution.
  • Aid for Families: Feeding, clothing and housing destitute women and children.
  • Vocational Training: Helping women and girls to leave prostitution and earn a living in fields such as healthcare.

In Raiwind she pioneered several vital ministries empowering women across the diocese and beyond. This included health and medical training, adult literacy and vocational classes, support during natural disasters, and rehabilitation programs for sex workers. She also led trainings in other South Asian countries and abroad, including in the United States.

Garrick was a member of the International Anglican Women’s Network and was an Anglican delegation representative at 10 of the annual United Nations Conference on the Status of Women and was well-known throughout The Episcopal Church, as well as the Anglican Communion.

“I have supported Alice’s program for years …. Alice has stayed with me on many occasions. She did amazing work in empowering and uplifting women,” said Yvonne O’Neal, a long-time social justice advocate and member of the Diocese of New York Task Force on Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault, among other Episcopal affiliations.

Garrick was known for her networking abilities, humor, passion and the gentle kindness she extended to everyone she encountered.

“At this year’s UNCSW, Alice was vibrant, amazing, passionate, involved. She will be remembered not only for her work, but for her deep faith, gentle humor, incredible hugs, and tireless pursuit of justice,” said Lizzi Green of England, on behalf of the International Anglican Women’s Network.

Garrick was a voice for thousands of victims in Pakistan and beyond its borders.

“Having visited Pakistan twice and seen firsthand Alice’s hard work paying off at the Women’s Development and Rehabilitation centers, I can tell you that she has saved thousands of lives in her long tenure as executive director,” said the Very Rev. Caroline Carson, rector of Holy Innocents’ Episcopal Church in Beach Haven, New Jersey.

“She was a networker who not only shared the Gospel but practiced it in the world. Alice made a massive impact and broke boundaries across Pakistan and other places to provide for those in need, victims of abuse, mistreatment, and blasphemy laws, and was a symbol of hope to those who knew her,” she said.