Iain Provan will teach our Library course this year on reading and preaching Genesis. He is the Marshall Sheppard Professor of Biblical Studies at Regent College, where he has taught since 1997. Prior to that he taught at the University of Edinburgh from 1989-1997, as well as at the University of Wales and King’s College London. Iain was born and educated in the UK, concluding his formal education with a PhD from the University of Cambridge in 1987. He has written a number of books within the discipline of biblical studies and reaching beyond that discipline, including Convenient Myths: The Axial Age, Dark Green Religion, and the World That Never Was (2013), Seriously Dangerous Religion: What the Old Testament Really Says and Why It Matters (2014 - for reviews of the book, including one by John Walton, see HERE) and The Reformation and the Right Reading of Scripture (2017), all published by Baylor University Press. Iain writes and speaks not just as an academic, but as one deeply concerned that the Old Testament would continue to shape and form God’s people for wise living—with God, with others, and with God’s world. Iain is an ordained minister of the Church of Scotland, he and his wife Lynnette have four adult children, and his main hobby is fly-fishing.
Iwan Russell-Jones will give the plenary lectures of this year’s Chapterhouse. Iwan joined the faculty at Regent College in 2011 after a long career in broadcasting. In 2013, he became the first incumbent of the newly formed Eugene and Jan Peterson Chair in Theology and the Arts. Iwan studied at London School of Theology and the University of Aberdeen before completing his doctorate at Oxford University on the relationship between faith and politics in the Leveller pamphleteers of the English Revolution. He joined the BBC in 1984 and has many years of experience as a producer and director, making programmes on all kinds of subjects for both television and radio. For four years in the 1990s, he taught at Columbia Theological Seminary in Atlanta, exploring the interaction between faith, media, and contemporary culture. Last year, with the help of a team of students from Regent College he made a film called Making Peace with Creation (2016) presented by the poet, theologian and activist, Loren Wilkinson.
Sharon Jebb Smith will also give a plenary lecture at this year's Chapterhouse. Sharon is a freelance lecturer, and speaker on literature, theology and Christian spirituality. She received her doctorate in literature and theology from the University of St Andrews, and has a Master’s from Regent College, Vancouver and an undergraduate degree in English from Queen’s University, Belfast. In her teaching and writing, she enjoys delving deeply into the two disciplines and find that exploring literature (whether fiction or non-fiction) is a very powerful way to facilitate thought and learning. She is the author of Writing God and the Self: Samuel Beckett and C.S. Lewis (Wipf & Stock, 2011). Originally from Belfast, Northern Ireland, Sharon is currently based in Aberdeen, but commutes to work, sometimes as far as Regent College, Vancouver. She is one of the main drivers behind The Abbey Summer School, which she set up along with her husband George. Visit her website and hear her lecture Of Mirth and Misery.