I was saddened to hear today of the passing away of Professor (Emeritus) David F. Wright, who died yesterday. The New College website reports that he was a ‘distinguished member of the New College academic staff from 1964 till his retirement in 2003. He was awarded the DD as a higher doctorate for his many respected publications, and was subsequently awarded a personal chair in Patristic and Reformation Studies. He had suffered from cancer for several years, but maintained a very active in lecturing internationally and in several publication projects until the last few months. Prof. Wright will be remembered affectionately by many students, including his numerous PhD students. He is survived by his wife, Anne Marie, and their son and daughter. Condolences can be sent to Mrs. Wright care of New College’.
I only met Professor Wright a few times, but each time discovered in him one who was a great encourager, in person and in print. Many of his books continue to grace my shelves, two of which (he co-edited) receive near incessant consultation: New Dictionary of Theology and the particularly helpful The Dictionary of Scottish Church History & Theology. In more recent years, his attention turned to questions of baptism, evidenced in his 2003 Didsbury Lectures, published as What Has Infant Baptism Done to Baptism? An Enquiry at the End of Christendom and, most recently, his challenging essays in Infant Baptism in Historical Perspective: Collected Studies.