Melbourne News

ACU theologian receives prestigious invitation

Wednesday 6 March 2013

KURT Cardinal Koch has invited Senior Lecturer in Theology at Australian Catholic University (ACU) Associate Professor Mary Coloe to participate in a Dialogue with the Disciples of Christ under the auspices of the Pontifical Council for Christian Unity.

A renowned biblical theologian, Associate Professor Coloe has written and contributed to numerous publications and is internationally known for her writing on the theology, Christology, ecclesiology and spirituality of the Gospel of John, Jewish Christian relationships in the first century, and the world and literature of first century Judaism and Christianity.

The Council for Christian Unity was established in the context of the Second Vatican Council in 1960, and since its inception the Council has been engaged in a number of dialogues with both Eastern and Western Christian churches, as well as with Judaism.

Associate Professor Coloe said she was honoured to be invited to join the Dialogue.

“When I received the invitation I was both delighted and surprised,” she said. “My first thoughts were how I might contribute as a woman and biblical theologian to the dialogue with other Christian churches and also continue to foster our relationship with Judaism.

“As a biblical scholar I work alongside many other men and women of many Christian denominations and churches, as well as with many Jewish women and men.”

Associate Professor Coloe has been invited to participate over five years in a dialogue with the Disciples of Christ. The topic for this phase of the dialogue is “Christians Formed and Transformed by the Eucharist”.

“All our Churches have a common foundation in the Scriptures so my biblical background may help the dialogue.

“My doctorate was a study of the Temple symbolism in the Gospel of John. This involved much research into early Judaism and its long traditions of God’s presence dwelling among the people in the Ark of the Covenant, the Tabernacle, the Temple, and through a more subtle presence as divine Wisdom, Torah and the Shekinah.

“My research has continued along these lines – I am still fascinated by the Gospel of John, and most recently by the theology of Creation that flows through this narrative from the opening verse, until the end.