Old Testament Tutor appointed for Ridley Hall

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March 2022

Old Testament Tutor appointed for Ridley Hall

We are delighted to announce that the Revd Dr Olga Fabrikant-Burke has been appointed as Tutor in Old Testament and Tutor for Admissions at Ridley Hall.

Olga was born and bred in the bustling and cosmopolitan city of Moscow. She moved from the Diocese in Europe to train for Anglican ordination in Cambridge and spent six formative years at Ridley Hall from 2013 until 2019.

It was during her time at Ridley that she discovered a passion for the Old Testament. After completing her Tripos and MPhil at Corpus Christi College, Olga went on to pursue a PhD in Old Testament studies as a Gates Cambridge Scholar at Trinity College.

Olga’s main interests are politics and religion, and she finds the old maxim that politics and religion should be kept away from the dinner table thoroughly disappointing.

Olga currently serves as Chaplain at Trinity College, Cambridge and Curate at St Bene’t’s, a vibrant parish in the heart of Cambridge. As a University Chaplain, she has a passion for ministry to students and young adults, as well as for sensitive and well-informed religious leadership in secular environments and in cosmopolitan and multicultural settings.

Olga is an Affiliated Lecturer and a member of the Old Testament Subject Committee in the Faculty of Divinity of the University of Cambridge. She is also a member of the Society for Old Testament Study (SOTS), the Society of Biblical Literature, the Young Priest Theologians Network, as well as New Wine.

Olga’s research interests centre on the literature, language, history, and theology of ancient Israel from its origins to the Second Temple Period, revolving particularly around prophecy, prophetic literature, and the scribal culture behind the production of the Old Testament.

As an ancient historian, Olga works to reconstruct the impact ancient texts would have had in their original historical, social, and literary context, with an eye on informing their reception in the modern world. Thus, fusing history with contemporary relevance, she is especially interested in the way a deeper appreciation for the social, cultural, and intellectual world of ancient Israel can bring the Old Testament to life for the 21st century audience.

Olga’s doctoral dissertation, currently in preparation for publication, reconsidered false prophecy of salvation in the book of Jeremiah as a product of ancient exegetical imagination.

Olga is married to Simeon and they have recently had their first child.

In accepting the appointment, Olga said, ‘I am thrilled to be returning to Ridley Hall—where I was privileged to train for ordination and receive first-class theological education—as Tutor in Old Testament and Tutor for Admissions. The Ridley community is energetic, innovative, intellectually engaged, and committed to knowing and communicating the riches of the Bible at this time of challenge and opportunity for the global church. I look forward to teaching and getting to know the students, as well as playing a part in the intellectual and vocational formation of the women and men called to leadership, lay and ordained, in God’s church.’

The Principal of Ridley Hall, the Revd Dr Michael Volland, said, ‘We are absolutely thrilled that Olga has accepted our offer to take up this important post at Ridley Hall. Inspiring students to read, understand and love Scripture is at the heart of the College’s vision. We train church leaders to have a firm grasp of the Bible, to teach from it with insight and clarity and to apply the Word of God to contemporary questions with wisdom and courage. Olga delights in Scripture and has a particular gift for bringing the Old Testament to life and helping her students to grasp its relevance for the times in which we live and minister. She will be an excellent addition to an outstanding staff team and we look forward to working alongside her in the years to come.’