Volume XXI, Number 1
In This Issue
For many Pietisten readers of a certain vintage (birth dates pre-Eisenhower presidency) the programmatic statement about the relationship between human civilization and the Christian Gospel was H. Richard Niebuhr’s Christ and Culture (1956). In his work Niebuhr delineated a range of possible Christian attitudes about that relationship, stretching from complete identification with human culture to total rejection of it.
I was asked to write something about the intelligent design debate from a behavioral science perspective. I guess the first thing I should say is that, although I believe in an Intelligent Designer, I think that the idea of intelligent design is probably best kept as a matter of faith, rather than scientific theory.
Tim Johnson presented C.P. for the Doctor of Humane Letters Degree honoris causa at North Park University graduation. Here is the substance of his remarks.
Despite years of experience and a laundry list of accolades, Roger Thorpe’s most recent trip to the Congo undoubtedly garnered more national media attention than any of his previous forays, due in no small part to the identity of two of his seven traveling companions, Kathy (Bowman) Holmgren and Calla Holmgren.
Dr. Paul Peter Waldenström based his comments on a Greek New Testament text which he translated into Swedish. Tommy Carlson has translated both the Biblical text and Waldenström’s comments from the Swedish text, 2nd Edition, 1902.
At the end of last year Doubleday published the final volume, Jeremiah 37-52, of Dr. Jack R. Lundbom’s magisterial three volume commentary on the Book of Jeremiah. Volume one, Jeremiah 1-20, came out in 1999 and volume two, Jeremiah 21-36, was published in early 2004. The three books (more than 2200 pages in all) are a part of the prestigious Anchor Bible Commentary Series edited by the late William Foxwell Albright and David Noel Freedman. They represent a monumental achievement in biblical scholarship by one of the sons of the Covenant Church.
As the term “social justice” is gaining more usage in America, not least in the Covenant Church, it might be useful to discuss how well this concept fits the Covenant profile. Is it a buzz word that well-meaning Covenanters have picked up from mainstream culture and transplanted into the Covenant Church? Or is this new term, and the goals associated with it, in line with the unique Pietist history of the Covenant?
Humans are born selfish. When one observes young children at play, the central, operative word is often “mine.” It is like: What’s mine is mine, and what my playmates want is also mine. Toddlers do not at first feel the interests of the other, share toys or offer possessions. They live in the moment, grabbing things without thinking about the wishes, needs, or even the private property of their playmates.
The set changes quickly once the man and woman are expelled from their lovely world of rivers and trees. The text does not linger to reflect on what has just happened. The woman and the man make love and then disappear as through a trap door on the stage floor. The result of this act of “knowing” results in two sons, Cain and Abel.
I believe in Brotherhood. But my belief in Brotherhood never really sank in until the boat sank.
On a cool Seattle evening, several hundred family and friends of longtime Pietisten supporter Viola Wahlquist gathered at First Covenant Church to celebrate her memory. Viola died on February 9, 2006 at the age of 92 following complications from a stroke.
Many of us are blessed by special friends in our lives, persons who have led and inspired us. F1ora Sedgwick comes readily to mind. My husband John and I met her in 1989 when she and Grant moved to Covenant Manor (now Covenant Village). From the start we shared a love of literature, laughter, and faith.
The death of June Ecklund brings to an end the third generation of families instrumental in starting and supporting Covenant Churches in eastern Nebraska.
Maybe I’m being a bit of a sentimentalist but I’m going to miss the old Guthrie. On May 7th this beloved theater closed its doors, finalizing its scheduled move from Vineland Place in Minneapolis to its new location on the banks of the Mississippi River.
Ever since first grade, reading has been a big love in my life. Part of my passion comes from reading authors whose outlook I don’t really share. Bishop Spong, a liberal Episcopal churchman, has written articulate and provocative books that make one ponder one’s easy assumptions about many theological matters, including the Bible. He rightly points out that there are difficult passages scattered here and there in the Hebrew Scriptures and in the New Testament.
I recently finished reading for the second time the English translation of Levi’s Journey, an engaging novel by Swedish author, Per Olof Enquist. The novel brings together fiction and history and makes for fascinating reading.
What do I think when I say: “I believe in the Holy Christian Church?” What do others think? What do you think? I expect there would be a variety of responses ranging from blank minds to particular churches. Some people say they believe in the Holy Christian Church and are unsure what they mean, some say it and are unsure whether they believe in it, others may know exactly what they mean, and others may despise people who make this affirmation.
For ten days (April 26 to May 6) Sandy and I visited the Seattle, Washington area as Pietisten editors. We were guests of Carl and Marcia Blomgren on Vashon Island, of Associate Editor, Nels Elde and Ann, and Jackie and Art Mampel in Seattle, Gordon and Chris Johnson in Snoqualmie, and my sister, Adele Stone, in Longview, Washington. I talked to the Adult Sunday School Class at historic First Covenant Church in Seattle (text available at Pietisten.org) and Sunday afternoon Sandy, Nels Elde, Karl Nelson, and I represented Pietisten at the West Coast Annual Meeting (more than 30 attended) hosted by Gordon and Chris Johnson.
Sleepy Head; Her Majesty; Gift Giver; Moclips