Research Profile: Robert Gribben

Robert’s first research was in ecumenical studies, in the theology of evangelism among Protestants (World Council of Churches, and Evangelical debates) and Catholic missiology around the Second Vatican Council. He has been a participant in international ecumenical dialogues with Anglicans and Baptists and was responsible to the World Methodist Council for all its dialogues for fifteen years. In this role, he was a member of the international committee of the Global Christian Forum, which brings together the mainstream Christian traditions, east and west, with the ‘new’ churches, Pentecostal and Evangelical. The Wesleys and Methodism are thus also central and continuing interests.

Above all, however, his work has been in liturgical studies (including its ecumenical and missiological aspects). He was one of the architects of Uniting in Worship, writing the commentary on the 1988 edition, and a study of two Eucharistic Prayers in the second (2005) (Uniting in Thanksgiving: the Great Prayers of Thanksgiving of the Uniting Church in Australia, Parkville: Uniting Academic Press, 2008.)  He was the first secretary of the Australian Consultation on Liturgy, and later Chair of its international counterpart, the English Language Liturgical Consultation; and a Council member of Societas Liturgica. He edited the Australian Journal of Liturgy 2009-14, and is a Hon. Life member of the Australian Academy of Liturgy.

Some Recent Publications

Into All the World: Being and Becoming Apostolic Churches, A report to the Anglican Consultative Council and the World Methodist Council by the Anglican-Methodist International Commission for Unity in Mission, London: The Anglican Consultative Council, 2014. (Methodist Co-Chair and a major writer of this report).

‘Living Traditions in the Uniting Church’, in Uniting Church Studies, Vol. 20, No. 2, Dec. 2014, pp 23-36; and online (2015).

[with Larry Miller], ‘The Global Christian Forum’, in Geoffrey Wainwright and Paul McPartlan, eds., Oxford Handbook of Ecumenical Studies, online October 2017.

‘Digging up Charles Wesley’, article in Proceedings of the Uniting Church Historical Society (Vic. & Tas.), vol. 24/2, Dec. 2017, 110-119.

‘The Future of Christianity?’ in Uniting Church Studies, vol. 18, No. 1, June 2012

Faith Working Through Love, Report of the International Dialogue between the Baptist World Alliance and the World Methodist Council 2018 (member and co-author) at

‘Wesleyan Worship and the Means of Grace’, ‘Constant Communion’, ‘The Miscellany of Methodist Worship’ three lectures at a conference of the Australia Academy of Wesleyan Research, Brisbane, 2016, in Journal of Wesleyan Research, vol. 1, no. 1, (2018).

‘Three Tasmanian Holy Tables in the Scots Tradition’, article in the Australian Journal of Liturgy, vol. 16, no. 2 (2018) 73-82.



Chapter, ‘The Lord’s Supper According to the Uniting Church in Australia’ in Liturgie von Kirchenunionen und ökumenischen Gruppen, Sacrum Convivium III (University of Bochum, Fall 2019)

Research supervision

Robert would be glad to discuss proposals in both liturgics and ecumenics, in historical and contemporary dimensions.


BA (Melb.), MA (Cambridge), Theol.M. (MCD), Hon DD (Shenandoah, VA)