Save the Date: Pietism Colloquium at Bethel

Scot McKnightWe’ve been floating this news for a little while now, but for those who haven’t yet heard… Please mark your calendars: Bethel University will be hosting a colloquium on Pietism on Friday, April 20, 2012. Coordinated by Christian Collins Winn and myself, it will be a kind of sequel to the 2009 research conference that led to our book, The Pietist Impulse in Christianity.

The keynote address will be delivered by Scot McKnight (North Park University). The most recent of his many best-selling books are The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited, One.Life: Jesus Calls, We Follow, and The Blue Parakeet: Rethinking How You Read the Bible; he blogs at The Jesus Creed. After preaching in Bethel’s chapel service, Scot will then resume the morning’s conversation over lunch.

Sensbach, Rebecca's RevivalFollowing that meal, the colloquium will continue with a talk by historian Jon Sensbach (University of Florida), author of Rebecca’s Revival: Creating Black Christianity in the Atlantic World and A Separate Canaan: The Making of an Afro-Moravian World in North Carolina, 1763-1840. Following Jon’s talk, we’re tentatively planning a roundtable discussion of Pietism as it has influenced (and continues to influence?) the Baptist General Conference, the Evangelical Covenant Church, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, and other denominations.

This event will be open to the public and — thanks to the generous support of Bethel’s Academic Affairs office — free of charge. (Though we’ll ask those intending to stay for lunch to pre-register, so that we have a head count for the caterers.)

Look for further details here at The Pietist Schoolman in mid-to-late January. In the meantime, feel free to contact me if you’d like to be on our mailing list or have any questions. Looking forward to seeing many of you at Bethel this spring!

UPDATES: See subsequent posts for more information about the talks by Scot McKnight and Jon Sensbach, as well as the afternoon roundtable on whether Pietism provides a “usable past” for contemporary churches.


6 thoughts on “Save the Date: Pietism Colloquium at Bethel

  1. The way Pietism sparks interest across denominations is heartening and interesting. It would appear that denominations that are most dogmatic about nonessential theological issues would be least hospitable to pietists. Example: confessing Lutherans. Strict adherence to the full Book of Concord might put a person on the anti-pietist side of the fence. After all, the pietism movement began as a reaction against what we might call hyper-orthodoxy. (Is that a term? If not, it should be.)

    If this theory is correct, then the conference will appeal more to ECC members, free Lutherans, free Methodists, LCMC and ELCA than it does to NALC, WELS, LCMS and dispensational denominations such as the Evangelical Free Church. The main weakness in this theory, perhaps, is that the ELCA web site indicates adherence to the full Book of Concord, which I assume is an anachronism.

  2. I definitely plan to attend this event at Bethel. Just for your information, I will be presenting on “Pietism and Pentecostalism: Cousins or Competitors?” at Regents University in Virginia February 21. It’s the J. Rodman Williams Lecture in Renewal Theology.

    1. Very glad to hear that you can join us, Roger! The title of your Regents talk sounds like the basis for a pretty fascinating conference in and of itself…

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