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Department of Theology news and events

Be sure to check our Facebook page for updates about seminars, public lectures and other news and events.

Department of Theology and Religion wins Postgraduate Research Culture Excellence Award

The Department of Theology and Religion won the inaugural Cup for Excellence in Postgraduate Culture in a Large Department. The Cup was presented to Associate Professor Will Sweetman (HoD) at the Vice-Chancellor's Garden Party.

The purpose of the annual University of Otago Postgraduate Research Culture Excellence Award is to recognise and celebrate positive, creative, supportive and vibrant research communities developed by departments.

The Head of Theology and Religion Associate Professor Will Sweetman and the Director of the Centre for Sustainability (CSAFE) Dr Janet Stephenson accept University of Otago Postgraduate Research Culture Excellence awards on behalf of their Departments. They won Best Large Department and Best Small Department respectively.

Christianity and Cultures in Asia seminar series

We are pleased to announce the first event in the 'Christianity and Cultures in Asia' Seminar series for 2017 jointly hosted by the Department of Theology and Religion, the Knox Centre for Ministry and Leadership, and the Presbyterian Research Centre. On March 17th-18 we will be hosting a Symposium on the movie ‘Silence’ currently screening in cinemas across New Zealand. Based on the novel by renowned Japanese novelist,  Shusaku Endo, the movie offers a powerful portrayal of the Jesuit Mission in Japan in the 17th century. 

Please download the poster for further details on the Symposium.  The deadline for registration is Tuesday March 14th.

Commemorating the Reformation 2017

The Department of Theology and Religion are hosting a series of Public Lecture and Seminars to commemorate the 500th Anniversary of the Lutheran Reformation. Visit the reformation webpage for more information on these events, or download the series poster.

2017 Faith Thinking events

The vision? To offer a range of courses that give in-depth teaching on various subjects, in order to help Christians love God with all of their minds. These subjects include New Testament, Old Testament, Systematic Theology, Practical Theology, and Church History. Each course will be taught by someone with expertise in that subject area – either by a university lecturer (predominantly from the Department of Theology and Religion), or a church leader.

Semester One

Issues of War and Peace
Professor Murray Rae, Department of Theology and Religion
7:00-9:00 pm, Friday April 7 and 9:00am-12:30pm, Saturday April 8
Burns 7 Seminar Room, Arts Building (Albany Street)

Islam and Christianity
Dr Adam Dodds, Senior Pastor, Elim Church
7:00-9:00pm, Monday May 8, 15 & 22
Elim Church Conference Room

The Psalms and the Life of Faith
Revd Dr James Harding, Department of Theology and Religion
7:00-9:00pm, Friday June 2 and 9:00am-12:30pm, Saturday June 3
530 Castle Street Seminar Room

Healing, Journeying, Seeing: How Augustine Helps Us Understand Christian Formation
Revd Jono Ryan, Minister, Highgate Presbyterian Church and PhD candidate, Department of Theology and Religion
7:00-9:00pm Friday July 14 and 9:00-12:30pm, Saturday July 15
St David's Seminar Room 1

Semester Two

Who Is Jesus Really?
Revd Associate Professor Chris Holmes, Department of Theology and Religion

A "Taster" Course in New Testament Greek
Dr Katie Marcar, Department of Theology and Religion

Understanding the Book of Revelation
Professor Paul Trebilco, Department of Theology and Religion

The Protestant Reformation and the Breaking of the Western Church
Associate Professor Tim Cooper, Department of Theology and Religion

2017 Faith Thinking Registration Form

Faith Thinking events will also be held in Invercargill. Visit the Faith Thinking webpage for more details.

New Teaching Fellow

Katie MarcarWe are delighted to announce the appointment of Dr Katie Marcar as Teaching Fellow in Biblical Languages in the Department of Theology and Religion, which is a new, permanent position within the Department. Katie will be teaching our Hebrew and New Testament Greek papers. She takes up her role on 1 February 2017.

Katie has a PhD in New Testament from Durham University where she was supervised by Professor Lutz Doering, Professor Francis Watson and Dr Jane Heath. Katie’s thesis was entitled Begotten Anew: Divine Regeneration and Christian Identity in 1 Peter. She has also studied at Edinburgh and St Andrews Universities in the UK and at Eastern University in the US.

While at Durham University Katie received an Excellence in Teaching Award from the Department of Theology and Religion. She also completed the Durham University Learning and Teaching Award and became an Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy of the United Kingdom.

Katie has been teaching papers in both Hebrew and New Testament Greek for the Department this year, and has also been a Distance Learning Tutor for Laidlaw College. Students have been very enthusiastic about Katie’s teaching and about her commitment and creativity as a teacher. We’re sure they will be equally enthusiastic in the future.

Burns Lectures 2016

The 2016 Thomas Burns Memorial Lecture Series was presented by Professor Choon-Leong Seow (Distinguished Professor of Hebrew Bible, Vanderbilt Divinity School) on "The Story of Job: A Contested Classic". Listen to the recording of the lectures.