Journal of Contemporary Ministry No. 7


  • Philip Hughes
  • Stephen Beaumont
  • Desmond Cahill
  • Susan Ennis
  • Maureen Miner
  • Dion Khlentzos
  • Darrell Jackson
  • Jenny Close
  • Robert Dixon
  • Catherine Lambert
  • Anthony Maher
  • Stephen Reid

Author Biographies

Philip Hughes

Professor Philip Hughes was senior research officer with the Christian Research Association (CRA) from its foundation in 1985 until 2016. More recently, he has worked at Harvest Bible College, assisting with the development of the Doctorate of Ministry degree program, and then at Alphacrucis University College where he taught research methods and supervised doctoral candidates. For many years he was a research fellow at the Centre for Social Justice Research, Edith Cowan University. He is also an honorary research fellow with the University of Divinity and with the National Centre for Pastoral Research. With postgraduate degrees in philosophy, theology and education, he is particularly interested in the relationship between Christianity and culture, and has written many books on religious faith in Australia, on ministry and on religious education.

Stephen Beaumont

Stephen Beaumont is the Dean of the School of Social Sciences and Business at Christian Heritage College, where he lectures in a range of discipline areas including counselling, human services, business and ministry. Over the past 30 years, Stephen has been in diverse professional and pastoral counselling roles, working for various denominations including Hillsong, Churches of Christ (Qld) and Australian Christian Churches. Stephen has passion for creating innovative social programs, including early intervention programs for at-risk youth and social enterprises targeting the long-term unemployed and ex-prisoners. He is currently the 2nd Chance program coordinator for Joii Limited.

Desmond Cahill

Desmond Cahill is Emeritus Professor of Intercultural Studies in the School of Global, Urban and Social Studies at RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia. He did his theological and pastoral studies at the Pontifical Urban University in Rome, and has worked in the interfaith area for over 25 years. In October 2021, he was elected by the 22 member nations as Moderator of Religions for Peace Asia which has its Secretariat in Tokyo.

Susan Ennis

Susan Ennis has taught English as a Second Language for over four decades to adult immigrants. Her PhD study examined religion, spirituality and the refugee experience, with refugees from the Middle East and the Horn of Africa as her subjects. She is Secretary of Religions for Peace Australia, and in 2022 was appointed Associate Secretary-General for Oceania in Religions for Peace Asia. She is a Quaker.

Maureen Miner

Dr Maureen Miner is Director of Research at Excelsia College, a Director of the Lumen Research Institute and a practising clinical psychologist. She has co-authored several books and over 50 peer refereed publications and reports in key areas of psychology, including abnormal psychology, organizational and educational psychology, and the psychology of religion and spirituality. Her work at the intersection of psychological science and Christianity has been recognized internationally by a Crawford Miller Fellowship (St Cross College, Oxford) and a fellowship for the John Templeton Oxford program of seminars and research into Christianity and science. Her latest research includes the formation of students in Christian higher education.

Dion Khlentzos

Dr Dion Khlentzos has been a lecturer, researcher and manager within tertiary institutions for 15 years. He has also worked as a psychologist and counsellor, both within organisations and in private practice. Dion has had previous roles as Program Manager and Program Director with the Jansen Newman Institute, as well as the Counsellor Trainer with the Salvation Army’s crisis telephone counselling service. Dion is the Senior Lecturer for the graduate counselling programs at Excelsia College. His current and published research covers the topics of attachment in higher education students, educating within Christian and secular worldviews, social and emotional learning programs in schools, domestic and family violence, and alcohol reduction programs. His recent presentations have included Programs for fathers with addictions who use domestic violence, Men’s mental health, and Counselling and service to the community.

Darrell Jackson

Revd Associate Professor Darrell Jackson, who grew up in the Isle of Man, is the Dean of Research at Whitley College in the University of Divinity. Darrell has served as an ordained Baptist minister in local church ministry, regional ministry and ecumenical mission since 1989. He has been a full-time missiological educator since 2007 and moved to Australia in 2012 to take up an appointment at Morling College in Sydney. In mid-2019 he was appointed to his current role at Whitley College. He is a Mission Commission Associate of the World Evangelical Alliance, a member of the Commission for Mission of the Baptist World Alliance, a missiological advisor to Baptist Mission Australia, and a member of the International Board of European Christian Mission International. His most recent publications include a chapter in Christianity in Oceania, one of the Companions to Global Christianity Series from Edinburgh University Press, and a chapter in Call to Mission and Perceptions of Proselytism: A Reader for a Global Conversation (Pickwick Publications).

Jenny Close

Jenny Close earned her first degree in Fine Arts (painting) and then trained as a teacher. For many years her working life was shared between secondary school teaching for Brisbane Catholic Education (BCE) and freelance liturgical art making. Later she was employed by BCE to work in multimedia: video, animation and book illustration. At the same time, she studied theology and in 2005 was awarded a PhD from Griffith University. The title of her thesis was 'A Feminist Understanding of Liturgical Art'. Since 2005, she has worked as a sessional lecturer in theology at Australian Catholic University and Broken Bay Institute. At the same time, she has maintained her art practice, which has become more digital over the years. She retired from full-time work in 2018, but since then has maintained her liturgical art practice and a professional and pastoral engagement with theology.