An Easter Season Filled with Dean’s Scholars

Date: April 19, 2023

As we say goodbye to Canon Scott Cowdell and his wife Lisa, we welcome four more Dean Scholars who will be with us till the end of the semester: Canon Dr. Sanjee Perera, Rev. Canon Bruce Kinsey, The Rev. Dr. William Wright, and The Venerable Dr. Alex Hughes.

As always, our scholars bring an incredible amount of expertise, knowledge, and insight to our campus. They are all thrilled to be here at VTS and I highly encourage you to engage with them.

The Honorary Canon of Liverpool Cathedral, Canon Dr. Sanjee Perera, is joining us on sabbatical. She is a Cognitive Psychologist and Ecclesiologist having written her Doctoral thesis on Ethno-social Identity, Moral judgement and Decision making in Societies experiencing Ethnic conflict (2010 University of Liverpool). Canon Sanjee’s most recent large scale research project was the Minority Anglicanism Project at the University of Birmingham, investigating how the Church of England navigates race, belonging and inclusion and the cognitive impact of racialised ecclesial spaces on marginalised peoples. She was most recently the Archbishops’ Adviser for Minority Ethnic Anglican Concerns in the Church of England and has spent the last couple of decades in academia teaching and researching in Psychology, Sociology and Philosophy, Theology & Religion.

Rev. Canon Bruce Kinsey has his degrees in Theology and Philosophy from Kings London. He was a psychoanalytic psychotherapist with the Cambridge Society for Psychotherapy and a supervisor of Therapy with the Society of Analytical Psychology London. He was involved with the Cambridge research group in science and religion, and wrote and published with them. Projects there included ones on Religious Violence and Spiritual Healing. He has edited therapy journals, and maintains an interest in therapeutic issues and the Clergy, and the psychodynamics of Religion.

The Rev. Dr. William Wright received his Ph.D. in Theology from the University of Chicago Divinity School in 2006. He was ordained that same year by the Capital Area Region of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). For eight years he was Associate Professor of Religion at Eureka College in Illinois and published his first book and has moved on to do several other projects. Currently, he is living in Strasbourg, France, where his wife, Jessica, is engaged in sabbatical research. While a Dean’s Scholar at VTS, he will be working on a book for a lay and clergy audience called The Reasonable Protestant’s Guide to Mysticism.

The Venerable Dr. Alex Hughes is one of two Archdeacons in the Diocese of Ely. He provides immediate pastoral, legal and administrative responsibility for the Archdeaconry of Cambridge, which comprises 137 parishes and 141 licensed clergy (plus retired clergy and lay ministers). He has written in several publications with his most recent being in The Vowed Life: The Promise and Demand of Baptism and Towards Interchageability: Reflections on Episcopacy in Theory and Practice. He will be joining us for a very special deanery evening in May with The Rev. Dr. Sarah Coakley in sharing reflections from their Littlemore group collaboration.

I hope these very short introductions will inspire you to have a chat with our incredible group of Dean Scholars this season and the next. Thank you all for being such good hosts for our guests and many blessings to our Scholars here on sabbatical.

The Very Rev. Ian S. Markham, Ph.D.
Dean and President of Virginia Theological Seminary and President of The General Theological Seminary

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