University of Divinity awards highest academic honour to Australian musician and song-writer, Robin Mann.
In October 2019, the Council of the University of Divinity resolved to award the degree of Doctor of Divinity (honoris causa) to Robin Mann. The Chancellor of the University, Dr Graeme L Blackman AO, will confer the award on Mann at the University’s graduation ceremony in Adelaide on Friday 6 December 2019.
The Doctor of Divinity is the oldest award of the University, created in 1910 and first awarded in 1913. It is the highest academic honour that the University bestows. The award is made in recognition of Mann’s sustained and distinguished contribution to theological scholarship through original musical composition that advances the celebration of Christian, communal life and identity, particularly in the unique Australian context.
Mann recently celebrated the Golden Jubilee (50 years) of his life as a writer, musician, worship leader, performer and practical theologian. This remarkable achievement attests to the continuing value that Australia’s broad Christian community places on Mann’s work. It is theologically timeless, relevant to contemporary Australian contexts, and singable for whole communities.
The citation for Mann’s award reads:
Robin Mann has made a sustained and distinguished contribution to theological scholarship over the last fifty years through original musical composition that advances the celebration of Christian, communal life and identity. This contribution deeply engages Australia’s unique physical and religious context in its imagery and insight, combining pastoral encouragement and prophetic challenge which is acutely attuned to the medium of congregational song. Robin Mann’s exceptional gift to the Australian Church is appreciated across many denominations and demonstrates excellence in the engagement of theology with the life of the wider community. Through his ministry with schools, congregations, leadership gatherings and training workshops, as well as his publications and recordings, he has provided visionary stimulus to the production of authentic Australian music and worship and inspired subsequent generations of worship songwriters.
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