So You Want to Learn More about Pietism…

For a post that was dashed off around 8pm on a Friday night, my explanation of how the Covenant Church taught me that “I’m a Pietist” got a remarkably strong readership. Clearly, it struck a chord with others who cherish that heritage — but perhaps also some who are new to it. Perhaps some who have found their way to a Covenant church without quite being able to put a finger on how it’s different about it.

So especially if you’re in that group and want to know more about the history and theology of Pietism than what I filtered through the lens of my own experience, let me pass along some recommendations for further reading and viewing. (I’ve also got a separate page about this here at Pietist Schoolman, but what follows is a more conventional reading list.)

General Introductions

Olson and Collins Winn, Reclaiming PietismDale W. Brown, Understanding Pietism, revised edition (Evangel, 1996)

Michelle Clifton-Soderstrom, Angels, Worms, and Bogeys: The Christian Ethic of Pietism (Wipf & Stock, 2010)

Christian T. Collins Winn et al., eds., The Pietist Impulse in Christianity (Wipf & Stock, 2011)

Christopher Gehrz and Mark Pattie III, The Pietist Option: Hope for the Renewal of Christianity (InterVarsity Press, 2017)

Roger E. Olson and Christian T. Collins Winn, Reclaiming Pietism: Retrieving an Evangelical Tradition (Eerdmans, 2015)

Douglas H. Shantz, An Introduction to German Pietism: Protestant Renewal at the Dawn of Modern Europe (Johns Hopkins, 2013)

F. Ernest Stoeffler, ed., Continental Pietism and Early American Christianity (reprint, Wipf & Stock, 2007)

C. John Weborg, “Pietism: Theology in Service of Living toward God,” in The Variety of American Evangelicalism, eds. Donald W. Dayton and Robert K. Johnston (Univ. of Tennessee, 2001)

Selected Biographies and Topical Studies

Arthur J. Freeman, An Ecumenical Theology of the Heart: The Theology of Count Nicholas Ludwig von Zinzendorf (Moravian Church, 1999)

Denise D. Kettering-Lane, “Philipp Spener and the Role of Women in the Church: The Spiritual Priesthood of All Believers in German Pietism,” The Covenant Quarterly 75 (2017)

Gary Sattler, God’s Glory, Neighbor’s Good: A Brief Introduction to the Life and Writings of August Hermann Francke (Covenant Publications, 1981)

Jon F. Sensbach, Rebecca’s Revival: Creating Black Christianity in the Atlantic World (Harvard, 2005)

K. James Stein, Philipp Jakob Spener: Pietist Patriarch (Covenant Publications, 1986)

Jonathan Strom, German Pietism and the Problem of Conversion (Penn State, 2018)

Jonathan W. Wilson, God on Three Sides: German Pietists at War in Eighteenth-Century America (forthcoming, Wipf & Stock, 2019)

Friedrich Zündel, Pastor Johann Christoph Blumhardt: An Account of His Life, eds. Christian T. Collins Winn and Charles E. Moore (Plough, 2015)

Other Covenant Perspectives on Pietism

Hawkinson, Glad HeartsArthur W. Anderson, “To Be Ourselves…,” in Forced to Be Free: Essays on Being a Christian and a Covenanter (Covenant Press, 1975)

Covenant Committee on Freedom and Theology, “Biblical Authority and Christian Freedom” (1963)

Donald C. Frisk, Covenant Affirmations: This We Believe (Covenant Press, 1981)

Christopher Gehrz, “A Slice of Pietism,” The Covenant Companion, Oct. 26, 2017

James R. Hawkinson, ed., Glad Hearts: Voices from the Literature of the Covenant Church (Covenant Publications, 2003)

Zenos E. Hawkinson, “The Pietist Schoolman,” in Amicus Dei: Essays on Faith and Friendship, ed. Philip J. Anderson (Covenant Publications, 1988)

Karl A. Olsson, A Family of Faith: 90 Years of Covenant History (Covenant Press, 1975)

John E. Phelan, Jr., “Whatever Happened to Pietism?,” The Covenant Companion, Jan. 23, 2018

________, “Why I Am (Still) a Pietist,” The Covenant Companion, Aug. 5, 2015

Writings by German and Scandinavian Pietists

Safstrom (ed. and trans.), The Swedish PietistsPeter C. Erb, ed., The Pietists: Selected Writings (Paulist, 1983)

Mark A. Granquist, ed., Scandinavian Pietists: Spiritual Writings from 19th-Century Norway, Denmark, Sweden, and Finland (Paulist, 2015)

Carter Lindberg, ed., The Pietist Theologians: An Introduction to Theology in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries (Blackwell, 2005)

Johanna Eleonora Petersen, The Life of Lady Johanna Eleonora Petersen, Written by Herself, ed. and trans. Barbara Becker-Cantarino (Univ. of Chicago, 2005)

Mark Safstrom, ed. and trans., The Swedish Pietists: A Reader (Wipf & Stock, 2015)

Philip Jacob Spener, Pia Desideria, ed. and trans. Theodore G. Tappert (Fortress, 1964)

Additional Free Resources Online

Tim Frakes, dir., God’s Glory, Neighbor’s Good: The Story of Pietism (2017 — streaming on Amazon Prime)

Christopher Gehrz, “Philipp Jakob Spener,” Christianity Today, Apr. 26, 2019

Pietisten journal

Pietism: The Inner Experience of Faith,” Christian History Magazine, no. 10 (1986 — includes articles from John Weborg, Ernest Stoeffler, Gary Sattler, Donald Durnbaugh, et al.)