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Gordon-Conwell Appoints Patristics Scholar to New Cooley Chair in Early Christianity

July 12, 2010

Donald M. Fairbairn, Ph.D., has been appointed to the newly endowed Robert E. Cooley Chair in Early Christianity at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, effective fall 2010. 

Since 1999, Dr. Fairbairn has taught at Erskine Theological Seminary in Due West, SC, most recently as Professor of Historical Theology. While there, he taught courses including historical and patristic theology and church history. Dr. Fairbairn also taught for several years at Donetsk Christian University in the Ukraine, and he teaches occasionally at several North American and European seminaries and Bible schools. He has authored books in Russian and English, most recently, Life in the Trinity: An Introduction to Theology with the Help of the Church Fathers, and has written many articles and book reviews on patristics, Eastern Orthodoxy and Christology. He holds an M.Div. from Denver Seminary and a Ph.D. in patristics from the University of Cambridge.

“Dr. Fairbairn brings expertise in the patristic period, expertise rarely found in evangelical institutions of higher learning,” says Dr. Timothy Laniak, Dean of the Charlotte campus of Gordon-Conwell. “As a noted scholar and excellent communicator, he will provide reliable information about these controversial centuries to students and the broader public and will play a strategic role in the development of the Robert C. Cooley Center for the Study of Early Christianity, a Center devoted to exploring the historical foundations of the Christian faith.” 

The Robert E. Cooley Chair in Early Christianity is an endowed faculty chair that provides Gordon-Conwell and the wider community in the Southeast with a senior scholar in the area of patristics and historical theology. This chair will allow the seminary to contribute careful scholarship to the growing interest in the early church.

Listen to Dr. Fairbairn discuss patristics, his research interests, and looking forward to teaching at Gordon-Conwell.

Dr. Fairbairn Interview