Category: Christianity

David Deavel on De Sales, Newman, Chesterton, and Hitchcock

Location, location, location.  That is the eternal cry of every real estate agent, and it proved prophetic for this week’s guest — Prof. David Deavel, an assistant professor of Catholic Studies at the University of St. Thomas — as he grew up an evangelical Christian in the shadow of Notre Dame, which gave him the […]

Anselm Rink on Missionaries and Political Authority

Missionaries often go forth into new territory seeking to win souls for their faith, but can they also affect the relationship between citizens and political leaders? Prof. Anselm Rink (University of Konstanz) discusses a study conducted on Protestant missionaries in Peru and how they altered levels of obedience and persuadability that regular people held toward government officials. Interestingly, the effects run in contrary directions. We also spend a bit of time discussion religious radicalization among Christians and Muslims in Kenya.

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Jeff Rose on Street Preaching (Encore Presentation)

Most people view street preachers as fanatical or crazy. Research on Religion takes the time to discuss the motivation, challenges, and benefits of choosing “open air preaching” as a means of spreading the Gospel. This is one of Tony’s favorite podcasts, dating back to 2011, as it provides and up-close-and-personal look with an actual street preacher, people we often don’t take the time to understand. This interview dispels a number of stereotypes people may have of those who preach the Gospel in open air.

We will return soon with a number of new interviews.

Michael Douma on Van Raalte and Dutch Religious History

In the 1830s and ’40s, Dutch Reformed theology experienced a schism between an increasingly liberalized theology and the growth of a new Pietism movement. One of the dominant figures of this era was Albertus Van Raalte, a medical student turned theologian in the Netherlands who subsequently migrated to the United States and eventually settled in Michigan. Prof. Michael Douma (Georgetown University) discusses the life and historically-informed theology of Van Raalte with reference to a newly discovered manuscript written by this 19th century religious figure.

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Anthony Esolen on Timeless Hymns

What makes for a “timeless hymn”? Prof. Anthony Esolen (Thomas More College) discusses his recent book “Real Music: A Guide to the Timeless Hymns of the Church,” and shares with us the importance of singing and poetry for the faithful. We review a number of important themes found within various hymns and reference a few of the greats over the past several centuries.

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Mark Lawson-Jones on Christmas Carols

Why was the partridge in the pear tree? This is all the more mysterious given that these birds can’t fly well. We answer this and several other questions related to the history of Christmas carols with special guest Rev. Mark Lawson-Jones, a chaplain for Mission to the Seafarers and author of the delightful book “Why Was the Partridge in the Pear Tree? The History of Christmas Carols.” We cover a broad swathe of history dating back to the medieval period when carols were used in various pageants, discuss the fun of wassailing, note that the Puritans almost killed Christmas fun, and then discuss the history and meaning of a few well-known songs.

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Jim Papandrea on Christology, Superheroes, and Science Fiction Films

Is Superman the representation of the Christ figure in the DC Comics universe? And “who” among science fiction characters most closely represents the orthodox view of Christ? And does anybody really understand what “2001: A Space Oddity” was about? Jim Papandrea, associate professor of Church history at the Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary and frequent guest, answers these questions and more as we take a journey through superhero and science fiction cinema to survey how religion is portrayed on celluloid. This is a conversation that not only will enlighten you on popular movies, but will help you understand Christology and soteriology all the better!

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Adam English on St. Nicholas of Myra, the Real Santa Claus (Encore Presentation)

While we are still on an extended sabbatical, we revive a favorite podcast from our archive. Prof. Adam Engish (Campbell University) discusses his book “The Saint Who Would Be Santa Claus.” We learn about the true charitable bishop of Myra and his most famous act of charity, how that became transformed into our modern representation of Santa Claus, and many other details about this extraordinary individual who lived during an important era of Christian history.

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Tracy McKenzie on the First Thanksgiving (Annual Encore)

We are taking an extended sabbatical to catch up with other academic-related work and to try to improve some issues with our audio files. In the meantime, enjoy this encore presentation with Tracy McKenzie (Wheaton) on a very seasonal topic — The First Thanksgiving. We hope to return shortly with some new episodes and fresh content, but until then please feel free to dip into our extensive archives that now contain over 350 unique episodes, nearly one for every day of the year!

James Felak on the Counter-Reformation

As a capstone to our Protestant Reformation Series, we give the “other side” its day in court to make their case. Prof. James Felak (University of Washington) discusses how the Roman Catholic Church reacted to Luther and the Protestant fervor that followed in the decades after Luther sparked a religious fire. We cover everything from the Diet of Worms to the Council of Trent, and to Jesuits, Inquisitions, and Carmelites without shoes. This is an inordinately fun exploration of the 16th century religious landscape.

Listen to all the interviews in the Protestant Reformation Series by clicking the tag to the right or the “read more” link below!

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