“In Defense of Denominationalism”

In Defense of DenominationsRoger E. OlsonStudy Conference, November, 2015The Sider Institute for Anabaptist, Pietist, and Wesleyan StudiesMessiah CollegeFirst Published: “The Future of Denominations in the Twenty-First Century,” Brethren in Christ History and Life (April, 2016). Republished here with permission.The “word on the street” among sociologists of religion is that “denominationalism” is dead in America; we are allegedly deep into a “post-denominationalism age.” P … [Read more...]

Thoughts about Liberation Theologies

 Thoughts about Liberation Theologies*Here is a message I sent to my students in my modern theology class—after our almost three hour discussion of Liberation Theologies. The chapter I refer to is my chapter on Liberation Theologies in The Journey of Modern Theology.I have a few comments I want to make about Liberation Theologies after last evening's passionate discussion about social justice--something I am truly passionate about.However, I do not feel entirely comfortable that we co … [Read more...]

The Dark Side of Pentecostalism

The Dark Side of PentecostalismThis is a follow up, an extended footnotes, if you will, to my immediately preceding blog post about Pentecostalism. You should read that first before reading this and certainly before commenting on this post.In 2006 Pentecostals celebrated what they considered the centennial celebration of the birth of their modern movement with the Azusa Street Revival in Los Angeles in 1906. Christian Century magazine asked me to write an article about “the dark side of P … [Read more...]

What Is Pentecostalism? What Do Pentecostals Believe?

What Is Pentecostalism? What Do Pentecostals Believe?These questions—“What is Pentecostalism?” and “What do Pentecostals believe about…?” are often asked—of me and others. In my case it is because I happen to be an evangelical Protestant theologian and church historian with Pentecostal roots. I do not consider myself Pentecostal anymore; I have been unapologetically Baptist for most of my life. However, increasingly, as I have become “comfortable in my own skin,” so to speak, I have opened up … [Read more...]

A Few Brief Thoughts about Blogging…

Dear Readers,Occasionally, as right now, I am either too busy or too lacking in something worthwhile to say, that I fail to post here. Please don't go away just because I don't post something for a few days. I travel fairly often and often find it difficult to blog during a trip. Often the hotel I'm staying in has very poor "connectivity." Anyway, please be patient. I will continue to post here but perhaps not as often as in the past.I apologize if I sound frustrated in some of my … [Read more...]

A Shout Out for “Movember”

A Shout Out for “Movember”As everyone in the U.S. knows, October is “Breast Cancer Month.” I have seen numerous billboards, public service announcements, received many e-mails—all promoting awareness of the scourge of breast cancer and urging women to be examined for it and asking for donations to fight this terrible disease.Come February, at least in the U.S., we will experience Women’s Heart Health month with an avalanche of information, appeals, information about women’s heart health. … [Read more...]

What to Do about “Angry, White Men?”

What to Do about " Angry, White Men?"Frequently during the past year I have read and heard "white men" mentioned by journalists (and others) as the main supporters of presidential candidate Donald Trump. The word "angry" is often attached to make the reference "angry white men." A few years ago a friend who lives in a major American city sent me a clipping from that city's award-winning daily newspaper. The clipping was a column by that newspapers's feminist African-American editorial page … [Read more...]