Dr. David Deane

Associate Professor of Theology


Contact Me
Phone: 902-943-1777
Email: ddeane@astheology.ns.ca

Areas of Expertise
  • General: Christian doctrine, Catholicism, moral theology
  • Specific: Apologetics, the New Evangelization, pneumatology, Aquinas, Nietzsche

Curriculum Vitae

B.A. (Hons.), M.A., Ph.D. (University of Dublin, Trinity College)

Personal statement

It was through AST, its students and my colleagues, that I found a vocation as a theologian. AST is that kind of place. At AST, people come to correlate their lives with God’s will and actively participate in Christ’s mission to transform the world.

Research interests

Christian Doctrine (especially Christology, the Doctrine of God, the Doctrine of the Holy Spirit, the Doctrine of Salvation, and Moral Theology, all of which feature in my current book project) Catholic Theology, Hildegard of Bingen, Continental Philosophy and Theology, and Apologetics.

Courses taught         

Christology, The Doctrine of God, The Doctrine of the Holy Spirit, The Doctrine of the Trinity, Early Christian Thought, Roman Catholic Moral Theology, The Theology of Thomas Aquinas, Roman Catholic Ecclesiology, Theological Foundations, Theory and Method in Theology and Religious Studies (co-taught), The Theology of the Eucharist, The New Evangelization in the Roman Catholic Church, Atheism and Atheisms, Nature and Grace, Postmodern Theologies, Original Sin, Body Sculpting (Virtue Ethics) and Roman Catholic Apologetics: The Difficult Questions

Current projects

I’m currently involved in three research projects:

  • My primary focus is a book on moral theology under contract to Cascade Books called The Matter of the Spirit. In it I argue that Christian theology shares in the malaise of moral philosophy identified by Alasdair MacIntyre and others. I show how this can be traced to the loss of a robust doctrine of the Holy Spirit. Christian Moral theology, I argue, needs to be based on a theology of the operation of the Holy Spirit in order to be coherent with scripture and tradition, as well as in order to make sense in the 21st century.
  • A second project is a textbook on Roman Catholic apologetics to accompany my course “Roman Catholic Apologetics: The Difficult Questions”. Here my goal is to offer new perspectives on the kind of issues Roman Catholics are challenged by in public discourse.
  • Finally, I am part of a team alongside Nuala Kenny, Cathy Driscoll, and Robert Murray who are looking at Roman Catholic Church leadership’s response to accusations of sexual abuse against priests. Our goal is to incorporate insights from organizational theory and systems analysis into a model of ecclesial transformation that can avoid many of the horrors that were present in Church leaders’ responses. Our first article is forthcoming and a symposium and book project are in the works.

Representative publications

  • My work on the relationship between Christian Theology and Continental Philosophy can be found in my book Nietzsche and Theology: Nietzschean Thought in Christological Anthropology, as well as articles such as “Alain Badiou’s Parodic Sacramentality of Numbers”, and “Nietzsche’s Atheism”.
  • My work on Christian doctrine can be found in articles such as, “Christian Just War and the Eschatological Delay” and “Christ and the Imago Dei, although my forthcoming book The Matter of the Spirit is the most representative example of my current work.
  • My writing on the contemporary Catholic Church is found mainly in non-peer reviewed publications such as Crisis Magazine and on the Australian Broadcasting Corporation ‘Religion and Ethics’ website.

Previous positions

  • Theologian in Residence – Colorado State University (2005-2007)
  • Elrington Research Fellow and Sessional Lecturer, University of Dublin, Trinity College, Dublin (2003-2005)

Professional affiliations/activities

  • Catholic Theological Society of America
  • Canadian Theological Society
  • American Academy of Religion

Grants received

The three largest grants I have received are:

  • A €64,000 Euro research fellowship with the Irish Research Council for the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  • A $100,000 grant from the Patrick Power Trust for the Diploma Program in the New Evangelization, for which I was the proposal writer
  • A research grant of $19,500 from the Wabash Foundation for a project entitled “New Ways of Doing Theology: Developing a Visual Arts Methodology for Teaching and Learning”.


I am interested in a number of sports and have been a fan of Manchester United since 12th May 1979. While far more grown up things occupy me now, that 5-year-old boy still lives inside me and ensures I follow “soccer” closely. Also, when not reading theology I enjoy reading history.

Personal website