Fuller Professor, Pioneer in Cross-Cultural Missionary Work, Dies at 84

By Williams, Janette | Pasadena Star-News, February 19, 2013 | Go to article overview

Fuller Professor, Pioneer in Cross-Cultural Missionary Work, Dies at 84


Williams, Janette, Pasadena Star-News


Dean Gilliland, a former Fuller Theological Seminary professor and a leader of the "missiology" movement to bring respect and understanding of cultural diversity to global missionary work, died on Feb. 17. He was 84.

Gilliland joined Pasadena's Fuller faculty in 1977 after many years in the missionary field, including 22 years in Nigeria. While there, he trained lay ministers and studied how to bring cross- cultural elements into Christian theology, seminary officials said; he was also founder of the West African Association of Theological Studies and spent several years ministering to Muslims in Africa before coming to Fuller.

"His contributions to missiology and the School of Intercultural Studies helped make Fuller the right choice for hundreds of veteran and trainee mission workers over the years," Fuller President Richard. J. Mouw said in a statement Tuesday.

Gilliland was the first faculty member to direct Fuller's Cross- Cultural Studies program for pre-field students; in his courses Gilliland provided a theoretical basis for "this then- groundbreaking practice of intentionally presenting the gospel in terms that are accessible to the local community," seminary officials said in a statement. …

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