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Honorary Fellow furthers Pacific engagement

Monday 17 August 2020 12:04pm


The University of Otago’s Theology programme is excited about its future relationship with recently appointed Honorary Fellow Emeritus Professor the Reverend Dr Uili Feleterika Nokise, and the opportunities it will create for further engagement with the Pacific community.

Theology Professor Murray Rae says that alongside the writing and publication that Dr Nokise proposes, the Theology Programme anticipates he will serve as mentor and occasional supervisor for Pacific Island students undertaking postgraduate study.

The Reverend Dr Uili Feleterika Nokise and Dr Lydia Johnson

“We’re also exploring ways in which we might collaborate in nurturing theological education in the wider Pacific Island community. Dr Nokise’s appointment brings encouragement and further support for the strong Pacific postgraduate cohort who are undertaking theological study at present.”

Dr Nokise is the immediate past principal of Pacific Theological College in Fiji, and former Professor of Ecumenism at PTC. He joined the College in 1998 and was appointed as Vice-Principal in November 1999, and then the PTC’s eight Principal in November 2001. His 17-year tenure in the role (from January 2002) made him the College’s longest serving Principal.

Professor Rae says Dr Nokise’s extensive experience as a Presbyterian minister in New Zealand and throughout the Pacific, along with his deep knowledge of the Pacific's cultures and history, and its theology, makes him an invaluable addition to Otago Theology’s academic community.

“Dr Nokise carries all of this with deep humility, and combines it with a passion for sound and robust theological education.”

“The Pacific community are very supportive of Dr Nokise’s appointment because it marks the recognition of one of their own theologians, and the valuing of Pacific voices in theology. We hope that it will encourage more Pacific students to look to Otago for theological education.”