Dibb, Andrew M.T. 1956- (Andrew Malcolm Thomas Dibb)

views updated

Dibb, Andrew M.T. 1956- (Andrew Malcolm Thomas Dibb)


Born April 21, 1956, in Durban, South Africa; son of Cyril Malcolm (a land surveyor) and Rona Melville (a homemaker) Dibb; married Cara Glenn (a teacher), August 20, 1983; children: Malcolm, Meghan, Laird. Education: Bryn Athyn College of New Church, B.A.; Academy of the New Church Theological School, M.Div.; University of South Africa, B.Th. (with honors), M.Th., and D.Th. Religion: New Church (Swedenborgian). Hobbies and other interests: Symphonies, cycling.


Home—Abington, PA. Office—Academy of the New Church Theological School, P.O. Box 717, Bryn Athyn, PA 19009.


Assistant pastor of General Church of the New Jerusalem in Canada, 1984-87; pastor of New Church, Buccleuch, Johannesburg, South Africa, 1988-2002; Academy of the New Church Theological School, Bryn Athyn, PA, professor of theology and history.


Servetus International Society, Society for Biblical Literature.


Servetus, Swedenborg, and the Nature of God, University Press of America (Lanham, MD), 2005.

Contributor of articles to the Web site New Church History.


Andrew M.T. Dibb told CA: "Writing is a wonderfully creative process, and history and theology provide an endless series of subjects to view creatively. I am primarily a theologian and then a historian—or is it the other way around? History takes on a different meaning when seen in the light of theology, and theology has its context in history. I see my goal as a writer in exploring and examining these two disciplines, juxtaposing them onto each other to get a new understanding of both. The primary influence in my thinking comes from Emanuel Swedenborg, whose theology challenges the long-held belief structures and philosophies of the world.

"When writing history I am less concerned with how Swedenborg came up with his insights than I am with how those insights relate to other people's experiences. The similarity between Michael Servetus (1509-1553) and Emanuel Swedenborg (1688-1772) is fascinating, and I plan to study the subject further. They both made cogent observations about the history of Christian thought that are as interesting and important today as they were in their own times.

"As a professor of theology and history I try to enhance my students' interest in the connections between religion and history. A large part of my curriculum focuses on the process of writing, including research, organization of ideas, and final presentation. My hope is that they too will catch the creativity bug and enjoy it."