Season 6: Episode 4 | Richard Topping | Are We Asking God the Right Questions?
Richard Topping | Guest
Andrew Stirling | Interviewer
Ambassador | Canadian Bible Society
Listen or watch Rev. Dr. Richard Topping (President of Vancouver School of Theology) share with Rev. Dr. Andrew Stirling (Ambassador, Canadian Bible Society) about the influences that helped shape his faith journey. Recorded as part of the series, The Word for Life: When Scripture Comes Alive, Richard talks about how the Bible is key to our understanding of God, how it stokes our imagination to help us see what we can’t see fully yet, and how looking through the lens of Scripture frames our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.
Richard Topping received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Religious Studies from University of Waterloo, a Master of Arts in Theology from St. Michael’s University in the Toronto School of Theology, and a Doctor of Philosophy in Theology from Wycliffe College, where his thesis Director was Professor John Webster. His doctoral thesis focused on theological interpretation of scripture in Hans Frei and Karl Barth.
Richard was Minister at Zion and Knox Presbyterian Churches in Muskoka, Ontario from 1993-1996 and at the Church of St. Andrew and St. Paul in Montreal, Quebec, where he was Assistant Minister from 1997-1999 and Senior Minister from 2000-2009. He has written or coauthored a number of documents for the Presbyterian Church in Canada, including a Catechism for Today (2008) and Together in Ministry (2006). He currently serves on the Church Doctrine Committee for the national church.
Richard taught at Presbyterian College (2001-2009) in the Montreal School of Theology at McGill University in the areas of Preaching, Pastoral theology, Introduction to Ministry and Church, Ministry and Sacraments.
Richard holds the St. Andrew’s Hall Chair in Studies in the Reformed Tradition and has been the Principal of Vancouver School of Theology since 2013. He teaches in the areas of Introduction to Theology, Reformation History, Christian Spirituality and Reformed Theology of the 19th and Twentieth Century. He has published in the areas of theological hermeneutics, homiletics, philosophy of religion, systematic theology and the theologies of John Calvin and Karl Barth. He has edited a collection of essays, for the 500th anniversary of the birth of John Calvin, Calvin @500, and is currently editing a series of faculty essays with Profs. Ashley Moyse and Harry Maier, Theological Ten Percent, which are an introduction to theological study. He is also working on a book which examines the role of the imagination in postmodern theology.
Richard initiated a Karl Barth reading group which has been active now for 11 years. He is a regular preacher in the Vancouver area and lecturer across the country in the areas of pastoral leadership and strategic direction.
Learn more about Richard Topping: vst.edu/people/richard-topping
Rev. Dr. Andrew Stirling was the Senior Minister of Timothy Eaton Memorial United Church in Toronto, one of Canada’s largest United Church congregations and was responsible for leadership and administration at Timothy Eaton from 1998 until his more recent retirement. Overseeing staff, providing visionary leadership, acting as the public representative of over 1,500 members and managing a dynamic and ever-evolving ministry to the city of Toronto and beyond.
He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Politics and Law from the University of Cape Town, South Africa, a Master of Divinity from the Atlantic School of Theology in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and a Doctor of Ministry in preaching from Acadia Divinity College, Wolfville, Nova Scotia. In 2008, Wycliffe College, Toronto, recognized his contribution to preaching with an honorary Doctor of Divinity.
Rev. Dr. Andrew Stirling is now the Ambassador for the Canadian Bible Society building relationships with churches, academic institutions, and individuals across Canada.