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Tony Baker to Edit ATR

Anthony D. Baker, Clinton S. Quin Associate Professor of Systematic Theology at the Seminary of the Southwest, writes in an Anglican Theological Review announcement:

I began serving on the Board of the ATR not long after joining the faculty at Seminary of the Southwest. In those days there were big questions in the air about where and whether the Episcopal Church was going to land. What I found at that very first meeting was a community of scholars who thought that despite all the background noise of a politicized sound-byte environment, there were theological depths that were still worth pursuing. People willing to step into a quiet, patient, scholarly space in order to tend theological growth with a confident hope that our work would be life-sustaining fruit for a church desperately in need of sustenance. When the headlines went away and the crisis of the day subsided, our journal was still there, tending and harvesting those plots. This I consider to be one of the great successes of Ellen K. Wondra’s leadership.

There is a deep Christological faith at work in that process: human beings asking human questions, using human tools of discovery, and hoping that in that very human work God will speak. The ATR is one of the primary places where our church does its deep processing of life-sustaining questions, and we do it in a way that gets into the hands of bishops, clergy, and lay people, as well as academics. Our articles carefully and patiently explore the difficult sites. Our poetry performs a Christology, you might say, by witnessing to the miracle of a divine word issuing in human language. Practicing Theology essays build that all-important causeway between the intellectual disciplines and the daily work of ministry. The book reviews invite readers into the most innovative conversations in theology today. If we are doing our job right, the articles, essays, reviews, and poetry found in the ATR will change the course and intensity of the worldwide theological conversation.

As Editor in Chief I want to spend time building relationships with the university departments and divinity schools around the world where new and exciting scholarship is underway, so that we are a first stop for faculty and graduate students who have something remarkable to say. I want to go to conferences and listen for the good stuff, and ask them to send it our way. I am grateful that Associate Editor Jason Fout will continue to offer his excellent collaboration in these areas.

I am also very excited about connecting with scholars in Asia and centers of theology outside North America, with the help of our new Associate Editor Chloë Starr, who is a specialist in Asian Christianity. I want to cultivate relationships with the great theological minds, wherever they are, so that the pages of our journal continue to be a garden for the living Anglican theology of our time. The whole world belongs to Christ, and the ATR exists for no other reason than to mark, perform, and celebrate this great truth of our gospel.


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