My blog posts revolve around my interests and vocation as a historian: the intersection of history and contemporary church life, the intersection of history and contemporary politics, serendipitous discoveries in archives or on research trips, publications and research projects, upcoming conferences, and speaking engagements.
I sometimes blog for two other organizations, the Canadian Baptist Historical Society and the Centre for Post-Christendom Studies.
The views expressed in these blogs represent the views of the authors, and not necessarily those of any organizations with which they are associated.
Over my twenty plus years of being a professor a number of people have commented on my picture of a young Queen Elizabeth II on my office wall, or, more recently, showing up behind me in Zoom meetings in my basement office.
Some are pleased to see her. Some perplexed. And some vexed.
Before my masters or doctoral students go into a theses defence we usually sit down (or Zoom) to talk about what to do before, during, and after the defence. Having chaired, or been primary, secondary, or external examiner in over 50 masters and doctoral theses defences I figured it was time to put some of these thoughts to paper.
Here is a list of some things that I think are important…and the list may keep evolving as I continue in the exciting high octane and meaningful world of thesis defences.
The subject of cessationism sometimes comes up in my courses, especially my course entitled “The Lives of the Saints.” Protestant students who hold to a view that charismatic gifts and miracles did not cease when the “age of the apostles” ended are often looking for theological allies to support their belief in the possibility of miracles today. And for some they think St. Augustine is just the man to have on their side (after all, he was the progenitor of the theology of the Protestant reformers).
But there are surprises lurking in those dusty church history texts…
Such as when St. Augustine says “why can the dead do such great things?