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Curriculum vitae
(see also website as celebrant)

Dr Christopher John Watson, Academic, longtime University Lecturer, Dean of Studies, International College of Celebrancy

Chris Watson - was married to the late Jan Watson. There are four adult children and five grandchildren.
They live at Ivanhoe, Victoria and sometimes at Korweinguboora, Victoria.

ACADEMIC QUALIFICATIONSDr Christopher Watson Celebrant
B.A. (Hons.), University of Melbourne, 1964.   (Major studies in English Language and Literature; Latin I (Hons.) and Latin II. Philosophy I, Modern History B)

Ph.D., University of British Columbia, 1973.  (Courses & comprehensive examinations on a range of English Literature; dissertation on poetry of John Donne and Andrew Marvell; Foreign language tests in written French, at level considered comparable to second-year University standard)

B.Theol., Melbourne College of Divinity, 1990. (Major sequence in Old Testament; minor sequences in New Testament and Pastoral Theology. Study of Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek.)


Diplomas of Marriage Celebrancy, Funeral Celebrancy, and General Celebrancy. Graduate Diploma of Celebrancy, International College of Celebrancy, 2001.

Certificate IV in Assessment and Workplace Training, 2002.

Certificate IV in Celebrancy,  2005.


1998­– .  Dean of Studies for Australian and International College of Celebrancy. (This was sponsored by the Australian Federation of Civil Celebrants, and offers Distance Education courses for present or intending Civil Celebrants).

2001. Facilitator for “Latin for beginners” class, Livingstone Community Centre, Ivanhoe

2000-2006. Assessor for VCE Literature. Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority. (also from approx. 1985-90)

2000.  Facilitator for Poetry discussion group, Livingstone Community Centre, Ivanhoe.

1999– 2000 . Teacher of Latin for class 7/8 at Sophia Mundi Steiner School, Abbotsford

1998– . Tutor in Latin for intending VCE student at Sophia Mundi Steiner School, Abbotsford

1998.     Sessional teaching at Monash University for “Life Cycle Events in Music and Literature”, a subject for Graduate Diploma of Arts in Civil Ceremonies.

1997–    .  Associate Scholar, School of English, La Trobe University.
1997.  Co-facilitator of seminars on “Literature and Spiritual Development” at Amberley Retreat Centre, Lower Plenty.

1969-96.  Lecturer in English, LaTrobe University.

1975-76.  Honorary Visiting Lecturer, University of Durham.

1972. Classes in English at H.M. Prison, Pentridge, Coburg.

1965-68. Holder of Commonwealth Scholarship at University of British Columbia.

1965-68. Occasional classes in English at University of British Columbia, Canada.

1964-65. Holder of Commonwealth M.A. Scholarship, University of Melbourne.

1964-65.    Part-time tutor, Department of English, University of Melbourne.
           Tutor in English, Newman College, University of Melbourne.

"Remembering the saints of Munster: An Irish Prayer Book Copied by Dáibhi de Barra" (with Constant J. Mews and Julia S. Kühns) in The Australasian Journal of Irish Studies, Vol. 14, 2014, pp. 111-129.
"Seamus Heaney - Translator" in Tinteán, (online), January 2014.

Review of Lynne Muir, An Illuminated Celtic Address Book, in Tinteán, (online) , December 2013.

"A forgotten Irish Saint, and his Many Churches," in Tinteán, (online), April 2013.

"St Carthage in Australasia" in Celts and their Cultures at Home and Abroad, eds. Anders Ahlqvist & Pamela O'Neill, Sydney Series in Celtic Studies, University of Sydney, 2013, pp. 367-380.

"Windows at St. Carthage's, Parkville" in Footprints: Journal of the Diocesan Historical Commision, Vol. 28, No.1. June 2013, pp.  11-19

Review of Anders Ahlqvist & Pamela O'Neill (eds.), Language and Power in the Celtic World,  in The Australasian Journal of Irish Studies, Vol. 11, 2011, pp. 94-95.

Review of David Stifter, Sengoidelc: Old Irish for Beginners, & Vim Tigges, An Old Irish Primer,  in The Australasian Journal of Irish Studies, Vol. 7,  2007-8, pp. 84-86.

“Teaching Irish to the Irish: Ulick Bourke's Easy Lessons in Irish".  Paper given  to Conference  “Them and Us: Perceptions of the Celts” at University  of Melbourne,  August 2006.

 “Around the Boree Log   and Australian Irish identity”. Paper given to Conference on Irish in Australia at University of Ballarat, December 1999.

“Ceist na teanga: Irish poetry in English translations.” Paper to W.B.Yeats Society, Sept. 1999.

“Spiritualities for a Secular Society”. Paper presented to a conference of the Australian Federation of Civil Celebrants, Millgrove, July 1999.

“Clarence Mangan’s Vision of Ireland in the Nineteenth Century”. Paper presented to the Tenth Irish-Australian Conference, La Trobe University, 28 September 1998.

  “Around the Boree Log Revisited” in Tirra Lirra, Vol. 8, No. 4 (Winter 1998). pp.11-15.

  “From Troy to Belfast. Translation and Comparative Literature” in Tirra Lirra, Vol.7, No.1  (Spring 1996), pp.27-29.

  "God and the Great Failure. Poetry from the Irish Famine" in Tirra Lirra, Vol. 6, Nos. 2/3 (Autumn/Summer 1995/96), pp. 22-26

  “The People’s Food. The Nation and the Great Famine.” Paper presented at Conference on the Irish Famine, Macquarie University, 28 September 1996.

  "Patrick White's Travellers."  Paper presented to the Conference of the Australasian Association for the Study of Religions at the Ballarat Campus of Australian Catholic University, 7 July, 1995.

  "Maps and Voyages in John Donne's Poetry" in Religion Literature and the Arts Project, Selected Conference Proceedings 1995. (Sydney, 1996)

  "Robert Lowell: Secular, Puritan, and Agnostical" in Religion Literature and the Arts Project,  Conference Proceedings  1994  (Sydney, 1995)

  "John Bunyan and Patrick White. Pilgrims on the Fringe."  Paper presented 23 September 1994 at the Seventh Conference on Literature and Religion at University of Glasgow.

  “The Gender of God in some English Writers”, in The Bible and European Literature: History and Hermeneutics, ed. O. Osborn & L. McIntosh, Melbourne, 1987.

  “‘They are religious - except me’: Emily Dickinson and Religious Belief.” Paper to International Conference on Literature and Religion, University of Durham, 1986.

  “War” (Discussion based on Remarque, All Quiet on the Western Front, Steinbeck, The Moon is Down, Lee, The Final Decade, Parsons (ed.), Men Who March Away.) in HSC English Resource Book 1985, Melbourne 1984.

  “Donne’s ‘The Sunne Rising’ in Viewpoints 84. Melbourne 1983.

  “Chaucer’s Knight and his Tale”, The Critical Review 22,  Melbourne, 1980.

International College of Celebrancy Alumni and Friends Association. (ongoing)

The Australian Federation of Civil Celebrants (Inc.), 1996-2005

Australian Literary Translators Association. (Treasurer, 1997-  )

Irish Language Association of Australia. (Secretary, 1997– 99).

LaTrobe University Staff Association, Committee member, sometime Treasurer, 1976-78.

National Tertiary Education Union. Membership since founding until departure from University positions.

LaTrobe University  Credit Union Co-operative. Member of founding Board of Directors, 1971-72.

 (Membership of Boards and Committees at La Trobe University including Education Committee, Selection and Enrolment Committee, Board of Studies (School of Humanities).)


Heidelberg Training & Resource Centre (Skillshare), Board of Management, 1991- 2009 .

Irish Famine Commemoration Committee, 1995- 99 .

North Eastern Citizen Advocacy Inc..  Member of Committee of Management, 1996-98.

Local Enterprise Development Initiative Project (Heidelberg). Member of Committee of Management, l992-93.

Viewbank Neighbourhood House [now Rosanna Fire Station Community House.]  Member of Committee of Management, 1991-95.

Banksia Secondary College, Heidelberg West. Council President, 1989-91.

Heidelberg High School. Member (& sometime Vice-President) of Council, 1984-89.

Endorsed A.L.P. Candidate for State Electorate of Ivanhoe, 1992.

Candidate for Ivanhoe Ward of Heidelberg City Council, 1990.

Bellfield Community Centre, Committee of Management, 1991-93.

Ivanhoe Primary School, Member of Education Committee, 1982-83.

Yarralea Kindergarten, Alphington, Committee President, 1972-73.

Darebin Parklands Committee of Management, Secretary, 1990-92.

Past and present membership of other groups, including: Hepburn Wind Project, Wombat Forest Care, Warringal Conservation Society, Bicycle Users Group (Heidelberg), People for Nuclear Disarmament; Oxfam, ANTaR, The Boite, Borderlands Cooperative.


Foreign languages:
Chris translated an autobiographical book, La Piccola Quercia, by Olga D’Albero-Giuliani, from  Italian.  and, after retiring from La Trobe University, studied Irish, Aramaic and Coptic and conducted seminars (for a LaTrobe University “Literature and Translation” course) on Biblical translations and the translation of poetry).  
In 1997, he led a Latin reading group and in 2001 a “Latin for beginners” group at Livingstone Community Centre. He was a member of an Old Irish reading group and remains a member of reading groups in Medieval Latin and Old Norse, all associated with the University of Melbourne.

Singing: Member of Phoenix (community choir based at Livingstone Community Centre), former member of St Bernadette’s Church choir, West Ivanhoe, and Melbourne Millennium Chorus and the Victorian Trade Union Choir.

Along with membership of several environmental groups, he and other family members have restored and continue to care for a block of land adjoining Wombat Forest.

Books for sale from the Celebrants Centre1300 446 786 Yvonne -
Ceremonies - all
Ceremonies and Celebrations Book and CD
Celebrant Training in History
Marriage Ceremonies
It's Your Wedding by Dally Messenger