The Bonhoeffer Effect, “Unpleasant Parallels,” and the 2016 Election

Thanks to conservative intellectual Eric Metaxas, Dietrich Bonhoeffer has become a member of this crazy election’s extended cast of characters. At multiple points this year (most recently in a Wall Street Journal op-ed and then a series of tweets), Metaxas has hearkened back to his Bonhoeffer biography in order to make the case for supporting Donald Trump. We ARE responsible for … More The Bonhoeffer Effect, “Unpleasant Parallels,” and the 2016 Election

Religion in The Olympics… And The Olympics as Religion

With the 2016 Summer Olympics just days away, let’s test your knowledge of the religious history of the games: Who banned the ancient Olympics in AD 393, and for what religious reason? What 1935 initiative had the joint support of Reinhold Niebuhr, the first Catholic to be a major party nominee for president, and the … More Religion in The Olympics… And The Olympics as Religion

The Political Misuses of Holocaust History

In recent decades, public consciousness of the Holocaust has increased exponentially. One unfortunate by-product of this otherwise salutary development has been the increased temptation for politicians to exploit references to Hitler, Nazism, and the Holocaust to stigmatize their opponents. So writes historian Christopher Browning, in an essay for Foreign Policy that argues that the “Political exploitation of the … More The Political Misuses of Holocaust History

That Was The Week That Was

Here… • What’s the Evangelical Covenant Church? Answer #2: “an immigrant church,” both rooted in Swedish-American history and being reshaped into a truly multiethnic body. • I started a new series on the newest book from ECC communications director Edward Gilbreath, about Martin Luther King, Jr.’s famous “Letter from a Birmingham Jail.” …There and Everywhere • We’re starting … More That Was The Week That Was

Best of The Pietist Schoolman: Teaching WWI in Europe

With two exams to grade at work, it seems like a good moment to rerun some favorite posts from the first three months of 2013. We’ll start by stretching the “Best of The Pietist Schoolman” definition a bit and collate four posts I wrote for our department blog, at different points along the way in … More Best of The Pietist Schoolman: Teaching WWI in Europe

Back from Europe!

Good to be back home after three weeks in Europe teaching about World War I… I’ll be easing back into blogging this week, starting with a post tomorrow soliciting readers’ thoughts about the questions I’ll be asking Feb. 8-10 when I teach the Winter Seminar at Bethlehem Covenant Church in Minneapolis. Then I’ll stretch out … More Back from Europe!