The Pietist Impulse: An Overview

The Pietist Impulse in Christianity coverLast week I concluded an eight-part series previewing The Pietist Impulse in Christianity, the new book I co-edited with Christian Collins Winn, G. William Carlson, and Eric Holst.

If you kept up with the series and/or have started to read the book yourself, I’d be curious to hear your reactions in the Comments section:

  • How would you define the “Pietist impulse”? Have we presented too broad a survey for the term to remain useful?
  • Does Pietism still have something to contribute to contemporary Christianity, or is it best understood as part of a defined historical movement?
  • Where have you most clearly seen or experienced the influence of Pietism (in your own life, in your congregation, in the larger church)? How would you assess its impact on Christianity?
  • Which chapter are you most looking forward to reading, or (if you already finished the book) did you most enjoy reading?

If you missed any or all of the series, here’s an index of all eight posts, with a capsule description of each:

  1. Definitions”: correcting some myths associated with Pietism; an early Pietist attempts to define the movement himself
  2. “Germans”: alchemy and conversion; the “common priesthood”; a Pietist redefines church history; a revival led by children; and theological battles between Pietist and Orthodox Lutherans
  3. “Modernity”: Pietism in and after the Enlightenment — with special appearances by Friedrich Schleiermacher and Søren Kierkegaard
  4. “Wesley”: was John Wesley a Pietist? maybe: Wesley in Georgia; Wesley against Constantine; Wesley on education and learning
  5. “Scandinavians”: pietistic Swedes and a Norwegian encounter bride mysticism, liberalism and socialism, Dwight Moody, and education based on conversion
  6. “Americans (and a Canadian)”: two immigrant missionaries, the hymns of a utopian society, and Martin Luther King, Jr.
  7. “Missions”: Halle, Herrnhut, and Württemberg missions, medicine and the “corporeality of salvation,” and an encounter with “anonymous pietists” in Ghana
  8. “Benediction”: Catholic writer Emilie Griffin wishes a piety of hope and reconciliation on the broken Body that is the Church

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