Joanna is the Karl Jaspers Lecturer in Psychology and Spirituality at Ripon College, Cuddesdon and Oxford Diocesan Advisor for Spiritual Care for Older People. She studied experimental psychology and theology at Oxford University, and clinical psychology at the Institute of Psychiatry, University of London. She is a chartered clinical psychologist and specialist neuropsychologist, registered as a practitioner with the Health Professions Council.
Her interests are wide ranging, reflected in publications on cognitive behaviour therapy, brain and behaviour, natural theology, psychological approaches to the Bible, psychological trauma, the spirituality of children and people with special needs, and medical ethics. She is the author of many academic papers and several books including The Dawkins Delusion? (SPCK 2007 with Alister McGrath); Ethical practice in brain injury rehabilitation (OUP 2007); Jesus and the gospel women (2009 SPCK); and The psychology of Christian character formation (2015 SCM).
Usha is a PhD Candidate based at the Oxford Centre for Mission Studies. Before starting an MA in Practical Theology at the University of Chester, she had been involved in full time mission practice and training for over 25 years. She is an experienced missionary, who has worked across the world, including with migrant peoples throughout Europe, the Middle East and North America.
Early in life Usha converted from Hinduism to Christianity, which has very much grounded her missionary and academic life ever since. Specialising in Anthropology, her focus now is on British Hindus who have converted to Christianity, their sense of identity, and their experiences of culture and religion. She has recently published a ground-breaking study: ‘Transcultural Insights into Christian Conversion of British Gujarati Hindus’ in the journal, ‘Studies in World Christianity: The Edinburgh Review of Theology and Religion’. She is also a part of the Centre for Missionaries from Majority World, a group of scholars from across the world who are interested in engaging with migrants of other faiths.
Prior to coming to Oxford to study theology at Wycliffe Hall and to participate in OCCA, the Oxford Centre for Christian Apologetics, in 2014-2015, Racheal completed her Bachelor of Commerce at Makerere University.
Racheal says the most exciting part about her ministry is seeing God at work, and watching how God uses a simple conversation to bring healing. Racheal has participated in numerous missions, including an RZIM mission week in Uganda where the team spoke at nine different universities. She loves to speak on anything that avails the opportunity to preach the gospel. We very much look forward to talking with her about her life, calling, and socio-economic empowerment and evangelism in Kampala, Uganda.
Dr. Carolyn Weber is an award-winning author, popular professor and international speaker. She has given numerous radio, television and podcast interviews on the intersection of faith and literature, as well as topics related to women and faith. She has served as faculty at Oxford University, Seattle University, University of San Francisco and Westmont College, and was the first female dean of St. Peter’s College, Oxford. Her books include ‘Surprised by Oxford’ and ‘Sex and the City of God.’
Dr. Elaine Storkey is a prolific thinker, writer and broadcaster as well as being involved with multiple NGOs and advocacy groups, especially ones pertaining to poverty in the global south. She has written extensively about feminism and sexual violence against women, as well as about climate change, art and technology. Here, she shares about her upbringing and faith-development, about her book, “Scars Across Humanity: Understanding and Overcoming Violence Against Women,” about what difference Christianity makes to feminism and to art, and about being called to a life of witness in whatever contexts we’re in.
Christian thinking about original sin and sexual difference have been entangled since the earliest attempts of Augustine of Hippo to articulate a doctrine of original sin. Despite significant efforts on the part of theologians in recent decades to integrate the doctrine of original sin with developments in evolutionary biology, there has been comparatively little effort devoted to rethinking the gendered contours of traditional expressions of the doctrine in conversation with up-to-date information about the biology of sexual difference. In this talk, I will share some of the insights from my D.Phil thesis, which has sought to fill this gap in the theological literature.