That Was The Week That Was

Before spending most of the week enjoying a holiday trip with family, I reflected on the recent annual meeting of my home denomination, explained what’s been called the “honest patriotism” of abolitionist Frederick Douglass, and shared some reflections from my parents and two others who joined us last month on our World Wars in Western Europe tour.

(Speaking of… I also updated our Pietist Schoolman Travel page with some exciting ideas for the future. Look for more on those plans in the next few days!)


Denker, Red State Christians• Even as The Atlantic summarized the crisis resulting from evangelicals’ embrace of Donald Trump, there’s some evidence that evangelical women are rethinking their support of Trump.

• If this excerpt about high school football is any indication, I’ll have to pick up a copy of Angela Denker’s book on Red State Christians when it comes out next month.

• Big news from a bastion of progressive Christianity: the first woman to be lead pastor of Riverside Church is leaving after just five years.

• What’s the future of the country’s second largest Protestant denomination? The president and dean of a United Methodist seminary think that the UMC needs to split up.

• What’s the greatest hymn of all time? There’s a bracket for that.

• About one in five Americans has no religion in particular. Does that speak to the unmooring of American society?

• I read David Brooks extoll the virtues of political moderation and shake my head as much as I nod it… then I watch progressives ridicule him on Twitter and decide that I’m a moderate after all.

• Before the 4th of July is too far in the rearview mirror, learn about the global intellectual history of the U.S. Declaration of Independence, which has been a template for more than a hundred more such documents.

John Trumbull, Declaration of Independence (1819) – Wikimedia

• Did you know that the rise of America’s national anthem went hand-in-hand with the nativism-fueled decline of classical music?

• When I teach my Modern Europe class this fall, I’m planning to use a two-week case study of Brexit. Among other topics, we’ll consider ongoing debates over race, immigration, and British identity.