Join us for the annual W. Don McClure Lectures Sept. 23-24, 2013. Vinoth Ramachandra, secretary for dialogue and social engagement with International Fellowship of Evangelical Students, will address “Mission in the Global Public Square.”
11:30 a.m. - The Challenge of Global Civil Society
4:00 p.m. - Mission to the University
5:15 p.m. - WMI Reception
6:00 p.m. - Dinner, Pre-registration is required. Registration and payment are accepted online.
7:30 p.m. - Postcolonial Mission
11:30 a.m. - Mission and the Mind of Christ Philippians 2:5-11
Contact the Office of Continuing Education with questions or to register for the dinner at or 412-924-1345.
Ramachandra was born in Colombo, Sri Lanka. He holds both bachelor’s and doctoral degrees in nuclear engineering from the University of London. Instead of pursuing an academic career, he returned to Sri Lanka in 1980 and helped to develop a Christian university ministry in that country. In 1987 he was invited to serve as the South Asian Regional Secretary for the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students (IFES), a post he held until 2001.
He currently serves on the IFES senior leadership team as secretary for dialogue and social engagement. His multi-faceted ministry includes promoting the vision among students and professors of a holistic engagement with the university; giving public lectures and participating in dialogue events in universities; and helping Christian students and graduates think and respond as Christians to some of the social, cultural, and political challenges they face in their national contexts throughout the world. Vinoth has been involved for many years with the Civil Rights Movement in Sri Lanka, as well as with the global Micah Network and A Rocha (a world-wide biodiversity conservation organization). He is the author of several essays, articles, and books including The Message of Mission (2003), Subverting Global Myths: Theology and the Public Issues that Shape Our World (2008), and Church and Mission in the New Asia (2009).
About Don McClure
These lectures honor the Rev. Dr. W. Don McClure, a 1934 graduate of Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, who served as a missionary in Africa for nearly 50 years. Born in Blairsville, Pa., Don McClure began teaching in Khartoum in 1928, upon graduating from Westminster College, Pa. After studying at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, he returned with his wife, Lyda, to Sudan to evangelize among the Shulla people.
In 1938, Don initiated a mission at Akobo, on the Sudan-Ethiopia border. The “Anuak Project” employed a team of specialists in education, agriculture, medicine, and evangelism, with the intention of fostering a self-sustaining, self-governing Anuak Church within 15 years. So successful were they that, in 1950, the McClures opened a new work at Pokwo. Later, while serving as general secretary of the American (Presbyterian) Mission, Don was asked by Emperor Haile Selassie I to establish a similar project on the Somali border. For some years Dr. McClure worked as a mission representative to the Ethiopian government. He negotiated an agreement allowing Christian missionary doctors and nurses to supervise government medical programs, and he worked for better relations between Presbyterian Mission programs and the Ethiopian Orthodox Church.
McClure’s years in Africa spanned dugout canoes to jet boats, in an arc through Sudan and Ethiopia equal to the distance between Pittsburgh and Dallas. After retirement, he continued as a volunteer at Gode, Ethiopia, until he was shot to death by guerrillas on March 27, 1977. Don McClure’s life is told in Adventure in Africa: From Khartoum to Addis Ababa in Five Decades (1990). It is written by Charles B. Partee, P.C. Rossin Professor Emeritus of Church History at the Seminary.
Pittsburgh Theological Seminary is a graduate professional institution of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). Founded in 1794, the Seminary is located in Pittsburgh, Pa. and more than 300 students are enrolled yearly in the degree programs. The Seminary prepares leaders who proclaim with great joy God’s message of good news in both word and deed. PTS is rooted in the Reformed history of faithfulness to Scripture and commitment to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.