GWNZ Fellowships, 2021 - 2022

Hannah Stewart

  Hannah Stewart PhD in systematic theology at Leuphana University

Kia ora koutou, my name is Hannah Ruth Stewart. I was born in the South of England, with a NZ-born English mother and an Irish father. My family immigrated to Aotearoa when I was just a year old. I grew up in Te Puke, Bay of Plenty. Despite growing up with limited financial means, I was privileged to have parents who instilled in me a high sense of integrity and a strong work ethic, and who have always supported me in my educational endeavours. After leaving secondary school I enrolled in a Bachelor of Theology degree at Laidlaw College in Auckland, becoming their youngest ever female student. I remained at Laidlaw to do a Master of theology, during which time I began a battle with mysterious dietary issues and chronic fatigue. My Master’s consequently took me five years to complete, but I persisted. In 2017 I was awarded an international scholarship to do my PhD in systematic theology at Leuphana University in Northern Germany. After two and a half years in Germany I returned home to complete my degree in NZ. I am currently completing my doctoral thesis which, drawing on Lutheran and feminist thought, offers a theological concept of what it means for women, and indeed all persons, to flourish. In the future, I hope to teach, and am excited to join the GWNZ whanau.