Ray Whitehead

Ray Whitehead

After finishing theological studies I was appointed by the United Church of Christ, USA, to overseas work in Hong Kong where I spent the next fifteen years (with study leaves that allowed me to complete a PhD in Christian Social Ethics).  My first work was in urban industrial outreach and later in research on China and in theological teaching.  In 1976 my family and I moved from Hong Kong to Toronto when I was appointed Director of the Canada China Program of the Canadian Council of Churches.  In 1980 I began teaching in the Toronto School of Theology.  In 1992 I became Secretary for Theological Education in the Division of Ministry, Personnel and Education, in the General Council.  I was appointed Dean of the Faculty of Theology at the University of Winnipeg in 1996.

After retirement in 2000 I spent two years teaching at the Divinity School of Silliman University in the Philippines.  My late wife and I were volunteers under the Division of World Outreach, which provided travel costs and medical insurance while the Divinity School there provided housing.  For five years, from 2002 to 2007 we continued under similar arrangements teaching at Nanjing Union Theological Seminary.

I developed a useful level of Cantonese when in Hong Kong; and to a lesser extent some fluency in Mandarin while in Nanjing.  My language skills are rusty now and my ability to read Chinese has declined even more.  Things come back when I am in a Chinese speaking context.