Wenham, MA — The Gordon College community grieves the loss of Professor David Lumsdaine, who passed away February 27, from complications following a heart attack. As a member of the Political Science Department, Dr. Lumsdaine taught a variety of courses with specialization in international relations and foreign policy. His classes emphasized student participation and writing, and students often spoke with deep appreciation for this man who was a beloved professor and mentor to so many. Prior to joining the Gordon faculty in 2007, Dr Lumsdaine — who held degrees in political science, engineering and mathematics — taught at Wheaton College, Yale University, Seoul National University and the Korea Development Institute in Seoul, one of the most prominent "think tanks" and educational institutions in that country. He was also a consultant and lecturer at the Oxford Centre for Mission Studies, where he mentored many graduate students.
"David Lumsdaine was dearly beloved by his students and colleagues," says Ruth Melkonian-Hoover, associate professor of political science, and department chair. "He passionately loved God, others, and God’s world, and this came through in everything he did. He had a brilliant mind and elected to invest himself first and foremost in remarkable ways in our students’ lives. We have been richly blessed by him, and his passing represents a tremendous loss to our department and to all of us in the Gordon community."
A hallmark of Dr.Lumsdaine’s teaching style was his insistence that students think for themselves and develop their own ideas. Students around the world have spoken of him as a major influence and inspiration in their thinking and in their lives.
Dr. Lumsdaine's first book was Moral Vision in International Politics, (Princeton University Press, 1993). His book Evangelical Christianity and Democracy in Asia (Oxford, 2009) continued this earlier work on how beliefs and values shape politics. He had been working on a sabbatical project examining the role of ideas in shaping the international political system, and the effect of domestic political values and practice on international politics. Dr. Lumsdaine was an active and beloved member of Christ the Redeemer Anglican Church in Danvers, Massachusetts. "We will miss him, many of us deeply so," says the Rev. Timothy Clayton, rector of Christ the Redeemer. "He was a dear and enthusiastic brother and a leader in our family of faith, a member of the vestry."