“He who has a why to live for can bear with almost any how”

Yesterday was a surreal day at Bethel University: In the morning, a couple hundred employees crowded into a room in our student commons to hear our president explain significant cuts and restructuring in academic programs and co-curricular/administrative staffing, necessary to avoid the multi-million dollar deficits projected for the next two fiscal years. In the evening, … More “He who has a why to live for can bear with almost any how”

Why My Family Is Changing Churches (and Denominations)

Fifteen years ago this month, I walked into Salem Covenant Church in New Brighton, Minnesota. Save for a sabbatical in Virginia in 2016, I’ve been at Salem ever since. Not surprisingly, that congregation and its larger denomination, the Evangelical Covenant Church, have been regular topics here at The Pietist Schoolman. So I think I ought to … More Why My Family Is Changing Churches (and Denominations)

A Counterintuitive Non-Economic Argument for Majoring in the Humanities

“These days,” my local newspaper reported on Tuesday, “English majors are an increasingly rare breed on college campuses.” Whether at the University of Minnesota or nearby Augsburg University, fewer and fewer students were majoring in English — or history, philosophy, or most of the other disciplines traditionally lumped together as “the humanities.” Robert Cowgill, chair of Augsburg’s … More A Counterintuitive Non-Economic Argument for Majoring in the Humanities

Understanding the Importance of Journalism, As Americans and Christians

There are several good reasons to fear that American democracy is being irreparably damaged by the current administration. Foremost, in my opinion, is the way that Donald Trump and his political allies have waged relentless rhetorical war on the reporters, editors, and other journalists who are doing their best to seek truth, minimize harm, and act … More Understanding the Importance of Journalism, As Americans and Christians

Open Theism, Evangelicalism, and Anabaptism (and Pietism)

Yesterday Mennonite World Review reported that Fresno Pacific University (FPU) in California had removed the president of its seminary, Terry Brensinger, and announced that pastors Greg Boyd, Brian Zahnd, and Bruxy Cavey would no longer teach in the seminary’s M.A. program in ministry, leadership, and culture. According to MWR reporter Tim Huber, several students have complained to … More Open Theism, Evangelicalism, and Anabaptism (and Pietism)

The Impact of One Life on Another: My Address to Bethel’s Faculty

Today is the first day of fall classes here at Bethel University, so I thought I’d share the brief address I delivered last Tuesday at our faculty retreat, as our faculty president for the coming year. I didn’t reflect on the theme verse (“For we are the aroma of Christ to God,” 2 Cor 2:15), … More The Impact of One Life on Another: My Address to Bethel’s Faculty

How Pietists Read the Bible

I’m now halfway through my four-week Pietist Option for Baptists class at Central Baptist Church in St. Paul, Minnesota. Besides reconnecting with senior pastor (and former Bethel Seminary professor) Joel Lawrence, one of the chief pleasures of the class is that I have a chance to delve more deeply into chapters of The Pietist Option that I … More How Pietists Read the Bible