President Anna Robbins and the Acadia Divinity College Board of Trustees are pleased to announce the promotion of Rev. Dr. H. Daniel Zacharias to the rank of Full Professor, effective November 6, 2023.
Danny’s journey to this milestone in his career began twenty years ago when he started at Acadia Divinity College as a master-level student in 2003.
“It was a series of events and God’s guidance that led me to choose ADC. It is humbling to get to points along the way where now ADC chooses me. It is a great community to serve and be a part of.”
It was on the invitation of an ADC faculty member that first brought Danny to ADC to explore the possibility of postgraduate studies. “Seeing the school and meeting everyone made the decision clear” and the next year, he and his spouse, Maria, made the move from Manitoba to Nova Scotia.
“Maria and I were both understandably uncertain about such a big move alone and far away from family,” Danny said in reflection, but ADC’s affordability and generosity with student bursaries and scholarships, paired with the support of the ADC community, made the move much easier. Their family is now fully immersed in the College and wider Wolfville community.
More to Learn
While his love for studying the Bible blossomed in high school, Danny’s keen interest in the New Testament started during his undergraduate studies.
“At the time I naively thought I’ll do an undergraduate degree in New Testament, then I’ll know it all, then I’ll do a Master of Arts in Old Testament and know it all,” he said. “That naivety didn’t last too long. The more classes I took, the more fascinating the New Testament became for me, and the more I realized I didn’t know, the more I wanted to learn.”
Danny completed both his Master of Divinity and Master of Arts (Theology) at ADC before going on to his PhD studies at the Highland Theological College / University of Aberdeen. Between 2008 and 2015, while a PhD student, Danny worked and taught part-time at the College. In 2014, he was first appointed to the faculty of ADC.
Fast forward to today and Danny has established himself as an expert in his field, and his research interests continue to grow.
Danny, always keenly interested in students, published two books specifically for them: Biblical Greek Made Simple: All the Basics in One Semester and Surviving and Thriving in Seminary: An Academic and Spiritual Handbook.
“I’ve also worked to reclaim my cultural heritage as an Indigenous man,” he said. “I continue to learn more about my family tree every year. This keeps adding to my own self-understanding, and I try to bring this to my biblical and theological work.”
This has been evident in Danny’s work with the Canadian Baptists of Atlantic Canada (CBAC) and wider Canadian church in the church’s response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), as well as his Indigenous approaches to scripture and theology. Danny also continues to serve as liaison to NAIITS: An Indigenous Learning Community. He is currently co-authoring a book on Indigenous biblical interpretation with Dr. Christopher Hoklotubbe, Assistant Professor of Religion at Cornell College and Director of Graduate Studies with NAIITS.
Theology & Creativity in Teaching
Danny brings a wealth of knowledge to the classroom as he equips students to serve. His teaching experience spans 15 years, and he continues to explore new ways to engage students through creative assignments.
“Last year for the course on the Gospel of Matthew,” he said, “I received submissions of short stories, songs, art, and spoken word poetry. They were all attractive, theologically rich, and profoundly moving. I want to see these beautiful things continue to thrive in these students as they go out into ministry. They have talents that need to be nurtured and gifts that they can bring to the wider community.
Engaging scripture isn’t simply about learning what was said in the past, but how what was said then can manifest in our world today.”
“Danny is a wonderful part of the ADC community”, says President Robbins. “He is a keen researcher who publishes extensively and a committed teacher who goes the extra mile for his students. He is developing excellent skills in academic leadership and brings creativity, efficiency, warmth, and humour to all of his work. We all value Danny greatly as a colleague, and I look forward to his further Christian service in our midst.”
The ADC community is delighted to see Dr. Zacharias recognized and celebrated for his excellence in teaching, his contributions to his field of research and the wider Church, and living out the mission of the College: to equip Christians to serve the mission of God in church and world with transformative impact.