MICHAEL RAMSEY PRIZE JUDGING PANEL 2007
Archbishop Rowan Williams
Archbishop of Canterbury
Bishop Tom Wright
Bishop of Durham and winner of the 2005 Michael Ramsey Prize
Journalist and broadcaster
Academic theologian and Methodist minister
Novelist, psychologist and university lecturer in literature
Tessa Kuin Lawton
Ordinand and ecumenical officer in the Diocese of Oxford
Archbishop Rowan Williams was born in Swansea on 14 June 1950. He read Theology at Christ's College, Cambridge. After research in Oxford (on Christianity in Russia), he spent two years as a lecturer at Mirfield Theological College near Leeds. From 1977, he spent nine years in academic and parochial work in Cambridge. From 1986-1992, Dr Williams was Professor of Theology at Oxford. He was enthroned as Bishop of Monmouth in 1992 and Archbishop of Wales in 2000. Dr Williams has written a number of books on the history of theology and spirituality and published collections of articles and sermons - as well as two books of poetry.
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Jane Williams was born in India of a CMS family, one of five sisters. She read Theology at Cambridge. She then worked in theological publishing and education, publishing, among other things, Bread, Wine and Women (with Sue Dowell), Perfect Freedom, Lectionary Reflections, Approaching Christmas and, more recently, Approaching Easter. She has also written a Sunday readings column for the Church Times and now works part-time for Redemptorist Publications, as a Visiting Lecturer at King's College, London and as a Lecturer at the St Paul's Theological Centre. Since 1981 she has been married to Archbishop Rowan Williams. They have a son and a daughter.
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Bishop Tom Wright, a native of Northumberland, read Greats and Theology at Oxford and obtained his D.Phil for a thesis on St Paul and his D.D. for books on the New Testament and, in particular, Jesus in his historical context. He taught New Testament studies in Cambridge, McGill and Oxford Universities, and worked as a College Chaplain, before becoming Dean of Lichfield in 1994, Canon of Westminster in 2000 and Bishop of Durham in 2003. Dr Wright has written over 40 books and hundreds of articles at both scholarly and popular levels, and has broadcast frequently on radio and TV. He is married with four children and two grandchildren, and lists music, poetry, hill-walking and golf among his recreations. Bishop Tom Wright's book, The Resurrection of the Son of God - Christian Origins and the Question of God (SPCK) won the Michael Ramsey Prize in 2005.
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Michael Walsh spent most of his working life as Librarian at Heythrop College (University of London). He was for much of his time there also reviews editor, and in his last years on the staff, the overall editor of The Heythrop Journal. He has appeared regularly in the British, and also the US, media. For some years he had a column in The Church Times, and was television critic of The Tablet, for which he continues to write occasional pieces. He has written, or edited, a number of books, his latest being Roman Catholicism: The Basics (Routledge, 2005). He is currently finishing a dictionary of the saints of the Eastern, as well as of the Western, Churches, and is revising The Oxford Dictionary of Popes.
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Frances Young taught theology at the University of Birmingham from 1971, becoming the Edward Cadbury Professor and Head of the Department of Theology in 1986. She was ordained as a Methodist minister in 1984, and has been a regular preacher in a local Circuit while pursuing her academic career. She retired from the University in 2005, having served as Dean of the Faculty of Arts (1995-7) and Pro-Vice-Chancellor (1997-2002). Her research and writing has been on-going throughout. Her books include both academic and more popular theological writings, drawing on her work on the New Testament and on Christianity in its formative centuries, but also on her experience as the mother of a son born with profound learning disabilities. She has worked on the theological and ecumenical dimensions of the L'Arche communities with Jean Vanier, their founder, as well as having many other ecumenical commitments. She was awarded an OBE for services to Theology in 1998, and elected a Fellow of the British Academy in 2004.
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Salley Vickers has worked as a university teacher of literature and a Jungian psychotherapist. She still lectures widely on the connections between literature, psychology and religion. She now writes full time and has published four novels: Miss Garnet's Angel, Instances of the Number Three, Mr Golightly's Holiday and, her latest, The Other Side of You. In 2002 she was a judge for the Man Booker Prize when The Life of Pi won. She is currently re-writing the myth of Oedipus, for the Canongate series, and working on her fifth novel. She is also working on the story of The Book of Common Prayer.
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Tessa Kuin Lawton grew up in Oxford and Salisbury, later reading theology at the University of Durham. After three years as head of Religious Education at a grammar school in Dorset, she studied ecumenical theology at Trinity College, Dublin. Tessa has worked as a visiting lecturer at Sarum College and an inter-faith adviser for the NGO 'Marlborough Brandt Group'. She has lived in Israel, the Gambia and Germany and now resides in Oxfordshire with her husband and two children. Since October 2005 Tessa has been an ordinand at Cuddesdon (Oxford Ministry Course), whilst working as Diocesan Ecumenical Officer and completing a PhD on 'Anglicans and Other Faiths'. She has published a biography of her grandmother, Noel Wynyard; the first woman to be commissioned as a healer in the Church of England.
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