James Pain has been affiliated with Drew University since the fall of 1951 when he enrolled in the Theological Schools Bachelor of Divinity program. Upon completion of that degree in 1954 he was appointed to the CLA Religion Department and as Director of Religious Life. In the intervening years he has held many posts on campus, including Chaplain, Chair of the Religion Department, Convenor of the Theological and Religious Studies Area in the Graduate School, holder of the Henry and Annie M. Pfeiffer Chair in Religion, and Dean of the Graduate, now the Caspersen, School.
The term Renaissance man is too often used these days, but he certainly qualifies. He is an ordained Methodist minister who can say the Latin Mass; his doctorate from Oxford is in Orthodox Theology, but he teaches courses in the early church fathers, St. Patrick, Charles Wesley, Chaucer, Charles Williams, and C.S. Lewis; he feels at home ordering wine at the finest restaurants and is the closest thing Drew has to a media star with his ads on WQXR for the Caspersen Schools programs. As one member of the community has said, If he found himself in Papua-New Guinea, not only would he know the marriage ceremony, but he has the license to perform it!
He was the first faculty member to be elected to the faculties of all three schools of the University, and continues to have students from all schools in his classes.