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Huron hosts its 313th Theology Convocation

Rachel Macaulay, Communications Specialist
May 10 2019

On May 9, Huron was delighted to celebrate the 313th Convocation of Western University and confer the degrees of Master of Divinity, Master of Theological Studies and Master of Arts upon its graduands. During the celebratory ceremony, Huron’s Theology Department also granted two Honorary Doctor of Divinity degrees to The Right Reverend Andrew Asbil and The Right Reverend Geoffrey Woodcroft.

Huron was incorporated on May 5, 1863 and is the founding college of Western University. Over the next 100 years, Huron would evolve from its theological roots into a dynamic Liberal Arts university and theological institution with a tradition for excellence.

After a century of cultivating academic rigor and compassionate leadership, in 1963, Huron adopted the motto “True Religion and Sound Learning” to guide its vision for students’ enlightening engagement with the university’s unique educational model.

Honorary Doctor of Divinity Degree Recipients

Huron presented Bishop Andrew Asbil with an honorary Doctor of Divinity in recognition of his exceptional leadership and service. In his role as the Bishop of Toronto, Asbil oversees more than 200 parishes, building trust and collaborative relationships between leaders as they work together to position the church for a more vibrant future. Huron is proud to celebrate Bishop Asbil’s commitment to fostering compassion, charity and hope within the diverse communities he leads and serves.

Our university was also pleased to present Bishop Geoffrey John Joseph Woodcroft (Class of ’90) with an honorary Doctor of Divinity, in recognition of his service as Bishop of Rupert’s Land.
During his extensive service, in Sudbury and Winnipeg, Bishop Woodcroft has demonstrated a consistent commitment to supporting the needs of marginalized groups. He is an associate of Rupert’s Land Indigenous Council and was an Anglican representative at the Independent Assessment Process hearings as part of the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement.

Huron also celebrated its students’ contributions to academics, extracurricular activities and the community more broadly. Two of the awards are brand new and one was first awarded just last year. These acknowledgements would not be possible without the generous community support that empowers Huron to recognize its students’ exceptional achievements.

1. The Bishop Bill Hockin Prize for Preaching (new)

Cameron Gutjahr is Huron’s first-ever recipient of The Bishop Bill Hockin Prize for Preaching. This prize celebrates Cameron Gutjahr’s sermon, which demonstrated an exceptional ability to grapple with human issues alongside the divine in ways that inspire hope and understanding.

2. The Dr. Sadika Merchant Kidwai and Mr. Arshed Ali Kidwai Scholarship (new)

Ibtehal Noorwali this year’s winner of The Dr. Sadika Merchant Kidwai and Mr. Arshed Ali Kidwai Scholarship, which celebrates her dual commitment to Theology and research in a STEM-related field, in the spirit of inclusive and respectful educational engagement.

3. The Vishnu Family Volunteer Service Award (first awarded 2018)

Mahmoud Haddara received The Vishnu Family Volunteer Service Award in recognition of his passion for service and contributes to fostering more vibrant and compassionate communities.

Congratulations and thank you!

The university is thankful for all those who joined us for this wonderful celebration of hard work, community-mindedness, spirituality and the drive of our students to inspire hope and compassion within a world that desperately needs it.

Congratulations to all our graduands and special award winners – may your journey continue to compel you to lead with your hearts as much as your minds.

About Huron’s Theology Department

Our Faculty of Theology continues to attract students to its Master of Divinity, Master of Theological Studies, and Master of Arts programs. From its modest beginnings in 1956 with 45 full-time students, the Faculty of Arts and Social Science (originally known as the Faculty of Arts) now enrols over 1000 full-time students. As well, Huron offers an undergraduate degree in Theology (B.Th.). The two Faculties enrol a diverse student body of over 1,000, with students from every province and some 25 different countries.