Starting next week, I’ll be teaching a three-week intensive course on Brethren in Christ history and theology at Messiah College. (As the college founded by the Brethren in Christ in 1909, Messiah is the only institution that offers such a course!) The class will meet daily in the Brethren in Christ Historical Library and Archives throughout the month of January. Our meeting place will allow us to have a hands-on experience as we wrestle with issues and ideas in the denomination’s growth and evolution.
I’ve prepared a syllabus that covers the background, founding, development, and present status of the church. (Click here to download a copy.) The class will mostly be lecture format, with opportunities for small- and large-group discussion. We’ll have a handful of guest speakers on issues like women in ministry, church planting/growth, and the global Brethren in Christ community. We’re also taking a field trip to the Ringgold Meetinghouse in Maryland, and participating in a hymn sing led by Dr. Dwight Thomas.
Throughout January, I’ll offer periodic updates on the class for those of you who might be interested! I’m planning to call the series will be entitled “BIC 101” (though that’s not the actual course number!). Hopefully I’ll be able to both summarize what we’ve been doing in class, along with some reflections on the teaching of Brethren in Christ history and theology to students who largely do not come from the tradition.