Legacy 2018 Plenary Speakers 

The Revd Dr Mark Durie Dip Min, BA (Hons), BTh (Hons), PhD, ThD, FAHA

Mark Durie completed an Arts Degree with First Class Honours and a University Medal in Germanic Languages and Linguistics.  He gained his PhD in Linguistics from the Australian National University in 1984 with a study of the language of the Acehnese, a Muslim people of Indonesia.  He conducted research field work in Aceh during the 1980’s and 1990’s, producing several books, and many research articles. The Acehnese dialects he documented were among those obliterated by the Indian Ocean Tsunami in 2004. 

Durie was a visiting researcher at the University of Leiden in 1985, researching the Dutch Acehnese manuscripts, many of which were concerned with jihad.  Then he spent two years as a Harkness Fellow in the USA, holding positions as visiting researcher at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the University of California at Los Angeles and Santa Cruz, and Stanford University.   Durie was appointed Head of the Department of Linguistics and Language Studies at Melbourne University before taking up an Australian Research Council Senior Research Fellowship in the mid 1990’s. He was elected a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Humanities in 1992, and awarded an Australian Centennial Medal in 2001 for contributions to linguistics.

Durie is the Vicar of Oaktree Anglican Church in Melbourne, Australia and the founding director of the Institute for Spiritual Awareness.  He is a human rights activist and theologian, writing and speaking extensively in Australia and internationally on issues relating to religious liberty, freedom of speech, religious intolerance and the persecution of religious minorities. Recent writing and speaking has focused on religious literacy, sharia law and Islamization, public policy, women’s rights, religious freedom, freedom of speech, Qur’anic origins, global missions, interfaith dialogue and religious conflict.  His opinion pieces have appeared in newspapers around the world.

Durie’s book Revelation: do we worship the same God? was published by CityHarvest in July 2006 and has been re-issued with the new title Which God?  His book The Third Choice, which appeared in 2010, provides tools for understanding Islam and the experience of non-Muslims under Islamic rule.  His book Liberty to the Captives offers a pathway for discipleship and spiritual freedom from Islam. It has been translated into Korean, French, Arabic, Mandarin, Indonesian and Amharic, and translations will also soon be available in Russian and Farsi. 

Durie is a Shillman-Ginsburg Writing Fellow at the Middle East Forum, and an Associate of the Centre for the Study of Islam and Other Faiths at the Melbourne School of Theology.  He has recently completed a second Doctorate in Theology  through the Melbourne School of Theology, on the origins of Islam.  A forthcoming book on Qur’anic origins will appear in 2018 with Lexington Books.

Georges Houssney is the founder and president of Horizons International, a 25 year-old global missions organization dedicated to proclaiming the gospel, discipling the nations and equipping the church. Georges founded Horizons International in 1990.  Since then, Georges has grown Horizons into a dynamic and multi-faceted international ministry with over 80 staff members in ten countries. Georges is the author of the widely acclaimed book Engaging Islam. He has authored two other books in Arabic, an Arabic Bible study, and the widely circulated ReachOut magazine. He also teaches in the Engaging Islam and Battle for the Hearts DVDs. Georges holds a bachelor degree in Psychology from Haigazian College in Beirut, Lebanon. Georges has also completed graduate work in Psychology & Counseling at The American University of Beirut, in Communications and Anthropology at Daystar Communications, in Communications at Wheaton College, and in Psychology and Linguistics at the University of Colorado. Georges and his wife, Joy, split their time between Beirut, Lebanon and Boulder, Colorado. They have four children and nine grandchildren.

Jay Smith was born in India to Brethren In Christ missionaries. Uniquely qualified to understand and address the differences between Christian and Islamic cultures, He has been a full-time missionary with the Brethren in Christ Mission since 1983. He focuses on polemics/apologetics among the Muslims of London, England, and can be found most Sundays speaking in the open-air free speech area of Hyde Park. Jay earned his BA from Messiah College, his MDiv from Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary, and his ThM in Missiology (with an emphasis in Islam) from Fuller Theological Seminary. He is currently finishing his work for a Ph.D. in Islamic Studies in London, UK.

Amani Mostafa hosts a weekly Muslim Woman show on the al Hayat Channel. This weekly, 90-minute program reaches out to Muslim women, as well as Muslim Background Believers, giving them a forum to discuss many issues important in their lives. The Muslim Women show is hosted by former Muslim women who lived under the oppression of Islam but have been set free through faith in Jesus Christ.  Amani also speaks around the globe on the topic of Islam and is a much sought after teacher and discipler.