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Kirsty Borthwick

Subject area and speciality

Christian Theology specialists:

Descent and Ascent in Augustine’s De TrinitatePrayer as a Way of Being in the Trinity

Research Interests

Systematic Theology; Partistic Theology; Ecumenism and World Christianity; Augustine of Hippo; Prayer; Trinitarian Theology; Liturgical Theology; Anglicanism; Theological Method; Theological Education


Towers of Faith Online Seminars – Guest Speaker (May 2020)

Title: ‘Augustine: An Invitation to Prayer’.

 Sutton Trust Summer School – Lecturer (August 2019)

Title: ‘The Christian Doctrine of Prayer’.

Wesley House Research Seminar – Presenter (March 2019)

Topic: The intersections between trinitarian theology and prayer. 

The Cathedral and Abbey Church of St Alban – Occasional Tutor

I continue to support the Cathedral’s Study Centre, by working as a visiting tutor. I have thus far taught: a study day on Karl Barth's Doctrine of Prayer, three 5-week courses of New Testament Greek, a further introductory study day on New Testament Greek, a week of the Greek Summer School (at intermediate level), a 5-week course on the theology of Augustine of Hippo, and a study day on Augustine’s City of God as part of the Cathedral’s 2018 series on matters of war and peace.

Other Professional Activities

Semester at the Ecumenical Institute at Chateau de Bossey (September 2020-January 2021)

A semester's study through the University of Geneva, sponspored by the Church of England, to engage in ecumenical formation at Bossey (Switzerland), an institute of the World Council of Churches.

Co-Convenor (alongside Dr James Steven) for ‘Sacramentality, Liturgy and Theology’ Seminar Stream at the Society for the Study of Theology (SST)

I review paper proposals, correspond with proposers and chair the seminar stream at the SST Annual Conference.

Research Assistant to Dr Ashley Cocksworth

I am assisting in the editing of material for a forthcoming collection of essays: Cocksworth, A. & McDowell J. C. eds. T&T Clark Handbook on Christian Prayer. Bloomsbury: New York and London, forthcoming.

Lead Convenor for ‘Credo: A Theological Education Conference’ (planned for 27th March 2020 – postponed due to Covid-19)

I am leading a group of three Ordinands/Clergy in planning and running a conference aimed at those in IME 1-7 considering a priestly call to theological education. 

Decani Scholar at Clare College, University of Cambridge  (October 2017-August 2020)

I assisted the Dean in the smooth running of the College Chapel, including leading services, leading our team of Wardens (ensuring cover for all services and training new team members) and liaising with the Director of Music and our administrative staff. I led a weekly reading group centred on theological themes. In the last two years we have read various theological texts, enjojyed a series on 'Poetry and Faith' and used the Chronicles of Narnia to create rich and interesting theological discussion.

Facilitator for ‘The Good Life and the Good Society’ Learning Together Course at HMP Whitemoor (January-April 2019)

I chaired discussions for a group of Cambridge Students and Prisoners, facilitating conversation and supporting each of them in their learning. I had a particular responsibility for marking my group’s essays and liaising with my second-marker to decide on final results.  

Westcott House Senior Student (March 2018-April 2019)

I chaired the Westcott House Common Room Committee and acted as the main liaison between Students and the Principal and other Staff. I had a particular responsibility for organising and leading key events in the life of the House, including the Leavers’ activities and the induction week programme


Membership of Professional Societies

Society for the Study of Theology

American Academy of Religion

The British and Irish Association for Practical Theology


Conference Papers

Forma servi, forma dei: Rereading Augustine’s Theology of Participation”. Paper accepted for presentation at the Society for the Study of Theology, University of Warwick, UK, April 2021. (Postponed from 2020 because of Covid-19)

“Augustine on Christology and Contemplation”. Paper presented at the Cambridge Theological Federation Research Conference, Online via Zoom, June 2021.

“Lego® Theology: The Potential of Play”. Paper presented at the Society for the Study of Theology Postgraduate Conference – Thinking As/Through Practice, The Queen’s Foundation, Birmingham, UK, July 2019.

“A PhD on Prayer in a House of Prayer: Theology and Prayer as Encounter with God”. Paper presented at Equipping the Called, Wycliffe Hall, Oxford, UK, June 2019.

“The Fullness of Grace in Petition and Intercession”. Paper presented at the Society for the Study of Theology Annual Conference, University of Warwick, UK, April 2019.

Key Publications

Book Reviews

Théories et pratiques de la prière à la fin de l’Antiquité. Edited by Philippe Hoffmann & Andrei Timotin (Turnhout: Brepols, 2020) in Augustiniana (forthcoming).

“Corporate Prayer and the Complexity of Tradition.” Essay in review of Prayer After Augustine, by Jonathan Teubner, Syndicate Journal, Forthcoming. 

Other Publications

“Herbert’s Prayer I and Augustine’s Christology” in Noesis: Theology, Philosophy, Poetics. Issue 7 (Easter Term 2020), 34-41. [Graduate Journal at the Divinity Faculty, University of Cambridge]


Current students and supervisors can access the Faculty’s Moodle page by clicking on the image below.