04 December 2020

Celebrating David Crawley

Memories and tributes flowed as colleagues, students, family and friends gathered recently to honour David Crawley’s 34-year teaching career at BCNZ/Laidlaw College. “Wise, gentle, unflappable, mentor, kind, genuine, humble, unpretentious, generous, amazing colleague” were just some of the words used to describe David. David is transitioning from his role as Senior Lecturer in the School of Theology to Professional Teaching Fellow, and will be back in 2021 teaching an undergraduate Formation class and a postgraduate course on Narrative Approaches to Spiritual Care.

David’s involvement with this College started in 1983 when he arrived to do a Bachelor of Theology through the Australian College of Theology. On completion of his BTh, David went straight on to do his Master’s in Luke’s Gospel. David’s trajectory into a lecturer role began quite literally by accident. In 1986 Old Testament lecturer Bill Osborne had a serious motorbike accident and David was roped in to teach first year Old Testament. In 1988 he was appointed full-time as a Biblical Studies lecturer. A personal journey into spiritual direction and spiritual formation areas saw him increasingly move into the teaching of Christian spirituality. 

Over the years David has also held various roles at the College – Dean of Families, Student Applications Coordinator, Acting Head of Practical Theology, Associate Dean of Studies, Acting Academic Dean and, more recently, Lead Academic for Postgraduate Studies. 

Formation classes at Laidlaw have been transformational for many hundreds of students, and the ripples continue. In the words of one of his students at his farewell: “Of every student whose life you have shaped and invited deeper along the journey of formation and transformation, you have also shaped the people they will go on to touch”. We are deeply indebted to David for his input into the lives of so many students and colleagues over these last three decades.