Revd Dr Jon Coutts, BTh, MA, PhD

Tutor in Theology and Ethics

 

A bit about me


Born into a pastor’s family in the heart of the Canadian prairies, I followed suit and became a pastor myself. After earning a BTh from Canadian Bible College I served for seven years in a few different evangelical churches in the Christian and Missionary Alliance, most recently as the Lead Pastor of Richmond Alliance Church in greater Vancouver.

Between church ministries I’ve spent a number of years in college, seminary and postgraduate environments both in North America and the UK. My MA in Theology, with a thesis on the theology of G.K. Chesterton’s The Man Who Was Thursday, was gained at Briercrest Seminary, Saskatchewan, but for my PhD work on forgiveness and the church in Barth’s Doctrine of Reconciliation I was drawn to Scotland and the University of Aberdeen, where I studied under Prof John Webster.

My wife Angie and I have been married since 1998. Together we are raising four quick and lively boys (the youngest of whom are twins) and their names are Elijah, Brady, Jesse, and Mattias. None of them has managed to evade their dad’s love for English football.

My research interests


My primary work is in ecclesiology and the ethics of reconciliation. This can branch into topics of pastoral theology, preaching and Christian life on one hand, or the politics of forgiveness and reconciliation on the other. I also have experience and interest in the studies of gender and sexuality, and in theological readings of contemporary fiction and film. My closest research has been in the work of Karl Barth, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, and G.K. Chesterton.

The topics of postgraduate research under my supervision include:

  • Cormac McCarthy and the Book of Job (current PhD)
  • The Place of Lament in Corporate Sung Worship (current PhD)
  • The Parish in Light of Willie Jennings’ Theology of Joining (current PhD)
  • Divine Judgement in the Universalism of Gregory and Bulgakov (current MTh)
  • A Theological Ethics of Sex Robots (current MTh/PhD)
  • Work as Vocation in Bonhoeffer’s Theology of Mandates (current MTh/PhD)
  • Lesslie Newbigin and Fresh Expressions Ecclesiology (completed MPhil)

 

How to get in touch with me


Email me on j.coutts@trinitycollegebristol.ac.uk

Tweet me @JonRCoutts

Take a look at my blog at thissideofsunday.blogspot.co.uk

Some highlights of my work


2016  A Shared Mercy: Karl Barth on Forgiveness and the Church (Downer’s Grove: IVP Academic).

2014 ‘No Country for Old Man: Barth calls the Coen Brothers’, for Barth in Conversation (Eugene OR: Wipf & Stock).

2013 ‘Relative Grit: Masculinity in Flux on Film’, Cultural Encounters 9.1.

2013 ‘Karl Barth, GK Chesterton, and the Basis of Christian Knowledge’, The Chesterton Review 39:1-2.

2011 ‘This Side of Sunday: Theological Fiction in Light of GK Chesterton’s The Man Who Was Thursday’, Scottish Bulletin of Evangelical Theology, Autumn 2011.

2011 ‘Once for All and New Every Morning: Forgiveness in the Theology of Miroslav Volf and Karl Barth’, Oxford Research Archive, April 2011.

2009 ‘How to Be Sliced by a Sword: A Personal Encounter with G.K. Chesterton’s Apologetic’, St. Austin’s Review, July/August 2009.

2008 ‘A Theological Approach to Pastoral Leadership Today’, Ministry Magazine: An International Journal for Pastors, November 2008.

 

Latest blog posts

The Art of Bible Journalling

Five years ago, Trinity independent student Amy White bought a devotional Bible with extra wide margins to add notes, and then discovered the idea of Bible journalling through Pinterest. She began to post her artwork on Instagram, along with reflections, ideas and tips to help those who want to try this form of journalling, and […]

Retreat to Franciscan community

Over the weekend of 2-4 November, Trinity students were offered the opportunity to participate in a retreat to the Franciscan community of Hilfield Friary in Dorset. Eight students and missiology tutor Rev Dr Howard Worsley travelled there to join the resident community in their prayers, meals, and chores. ‘This trip, which we regularly organise as […]

New ‘dispersed learning’ track

Through Trinity College Bristol’s new dispersed learning track, ordinands have the option to train at Trinity without moving home. Dispersed learners can complete the Diploma in Theology, Ministry and Mission in two years or the Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Theology, Ministry and Mission in three years, both accredited by Durham University. Trinity’s dispersed learners […]

Cross-cultural learning

Last summer three Trinity students engaged in learning experiences that broadened their understanding of the global church, and what it can mean to be a Christian and to be a vicar. Ordinand Rebecca Heath-Taylor completed a placement in Harare, Zimbabwe with a charity called Cross-Over. Cross-Over aims to meet the educational needs of poor communities […]