DAVID MORGAN LOCHHEAD 1936-1999
David Lochhead was born in 1936 in Montreal, where he attended McGill University.
En route to his degrees in science, theology and philosophy of religion,
he also studied at Union College, and in Oxford and Chicago.
Ordained in 1962, he served two United Church parishes in Quebec and
Ontario. At an unusually early stage in his career, David was named to
that role of "teacher of the church" which he never relinquished,
holding posts at St.Paul's College, Waterloo, Coughlan College,
St. John's, Newfoundland, and from 1978 at Vancouver School of Theology.
These were the institutions that served as his base; the world of
religious thought and life was his parish.
David was no "ivory-tower" academic. He thought with and for the Church.
To peruse his publications is to identify issues that were central in
Canadian Christian life during the more than thirty years of his
professional ministry. In the `70's he wrote two small and
highly influential books: The Liberation of the Bible.
called us to free Scripture from the spiritual strait-jackets
into which we had placed it; while The Lordship of Jesus
challenged liberal Canadian churches to wrestle seriously
with the meaning of their
David wore his Reformed heritage proudly,
yet his was
never a parochial identity. By the mid-80's, partnering
with the American theologian John Cobb he was in the
forefront of Buddhist- Christian encounter,. Out of this
experience came his important 1988 work, The Dialogical
Imperative. When the First Nation peoples of the
north-west coast invited VST to partner with them in
finding an innovative way to prepare leadership for
Christian ministry in their communities, David gave
energetic and imaginative support on the team which
created VST's Native Minstries Degree Programme.
David also thought ahead of the Church. Most of us
were probably bemused when David first began to
explore the new world of cybernetics. His revolutionary
thinking about Theology in a Digital World, and the new
possibilities of human community that would emerge
with the World-Wide Web finally received overdue
international recognition in 1998, when he was made
the recipient of a prestigious Lilly Foundation Grant,
as a Faculty Fellow. Tragically, the work this award was
to sponsor was cut dramatically short just a year later,
when David suffered a cerebral hemorrhage, and
died three days short of his 63rd birthday.