Public lecture: Offending for the Right Reason: Christian Mission in a Post-Colonial World

Tuesday April 11 2017 by St Mark's

Offending for the right reason: Christian Mission in a Post-Colonial World

As the colonial era began to crumble in the 1960s, many Westerners believed that Christian mission had been an imperialistic tool of colonialism and should also end.

And yet, the growth and distribution of the world’s Christian population is now shifting away from Global North countries (typically North America, Europe, Australia, Japan and New Zealand). An increasingly post-Western Christianity has embraced active mission, and is flourishing because of it.

This public lecture will acknowledge cultural mistakes made by missionaries in the colonial era, and point to reasons that God’s mission in the world is still alive and well.

The work of Australian missiological anthropologist, Alan Tippett, will also be noted as a model of doing mission in a post-colonial world. St Mark’s National Memorial Library is home to Alan Tippett’s personal collection of books and his life’s work. A special exhibition featuring some of his work will be available after the lecture.

  • DATE: Wednesday 26 April
  • TIME: 7:30pm
  • VENUE: Sulman Room, St Mark's National Theological Centre, 15 Blackall Street, Barton
  • FEE: Free

About Dr Darrell Whiteman

Darrell Whiteman is a missiological anthropologist, passionate about helping people in diverse cultures connect the Gospel and biblical values to the deepest part of their worldview.  His training in “Crossing Cultural Barriers with the Gospel” has taken him to 78 countries and the training of thousands of missionaries and church workers.  After serving as a United Methodist missionary in Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands (1979-1984) he was professor of anthropology and mission and later dean of the E. Stanley Jones School of World Mission and Evangelism at Asbury Theological Seminary for 21 years, and Vice President and Resident Missiologist at The Mission Society in Atlanta, Georgia for nine years.  He recently served as the interim executive director of the Overseas Ministries Study Center in New Haven, and adjunct professor at Yale Divinity School.   
He served on the board of trustee of the American Bible Society for 27 years.  He is the past president of the American Society of Missiology and the International Association for Mission Studies. He has authored or edited five books, including World Mission in the Wesleyan Spirit.
He lives in Norcross, GA with his wife Laurie of 45 years, and can be reached at 770-789-7078 or

Alan Tippett and the Tippett Collection

Photo of Tippett manuscripts on library shelfDr Alan Tippett (9 November 1911 — 16 September 1988) was a Methodist minister and missionary, anthropologist and missiologist of international repute. He and his wife Edna began their work for the Methodist overseas missionary service in wartime Fiji in 1941. Dr Tippett's keen powers of observation were used to compile a rich collection of notes on Fiji custom, culture and folklore which provides a rich source for anthropological and missiological researchers. This collection of notes and manuscripts, together with his library collection, were presented to St Mark's National Memorial Library in 1984. 

Dr Tippett was professor of Anthropology and Oceania Studies at the School of World Mission, Fuller Seminary, Pasadena, California. His teaching, research and publications in the field of missiology and the methodology of mission consultancies in Ethiopia, Korea and Papua New Guinea are unparalleled. View the collection online.