My latest video is a plug for my upcoming course with Davenant Hall, Christianity before Constantine. Registration ends September 10! Register now!
My latest offering on YouTube complements yesterday’s blog post. Yesterday, I argued for the relevance of second-century Christianity for today. In my YouTube video, I argue for the importance of the second century as its own historical moment, highlighting six areas worth considering, the first three of which are intimately connected:
- Canon of Scripture
- Rule of Faith
Also, these guys:
- St Ignatius of Antioch
- St Justin Martyr
- St Irenaeus of Lyons
- St Clement of Alexandria
Returning to my original focus on YouTube, this video is about church history — Sts Bede, Augustine of Canterbury, and Aldhelm of Sherborne, all of whom had feasts this past week, according to the 1962 Canadian BCP. Enjoy!
In this week’s History of Christianity video, I cover 1000 years in 20 minutes! Insane! And I have a handout this week: Medieval christianity handout
If this were a university course, I would assign the following online readings.
Bede, Ecclesiastical History of the English People, 1.25-26 (Augustine), 4.27-29 (Cuthbert)
The Assisi Compilation, ch 34: St Francis gives away his cloak
R. W. Southern, Western Society and the Church in the Middle Ages, pp. 214-239, 272-299 -Available at openlibrary.org
Adomnán of Iona. Life of Saint Columba.
Life of St John the Almsgiver. From Three Byzantine Saints: Contemporary Biographies of St. Daniel the Stylite, St. Theodore of Sykeon and St. John the Almsgiver, trans. Elizabeth Dawes, and introductions and notes by Norman H. Baynes, (London: 1948).
Thomas of Celano. First Life of St Francis of Assisi.
Turgot of St Andrews. Life of St Margaret.
Armstrong, Chris R. Medieval Wisdom for Modern Christians. Baker Publishing, 2016. Available on Scribd with a subscription.
Cameron, Averil. Byzantine Christianity: A Very Short History. London, 2017. Available on Scribd with subscription.
Farmer, David. The Oxford Dictionary of Saints. 5th edn. Oxford, 2011. (I used this for St Kilian/Killian/Cillian and Alexander Nevsky; it’s a tremendous resource with proper bibliography for each entry.)
Jenkins, J. Philip. The Lost History of Christianity: The Thousand-Year Golden Age of the Church in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia—and How It Died. 2008. Available on Scribd with subscription. Available on openlibrary.org
Markides, Kyriacos C. The Mountain of Silence. New York, 2001. -Available on openlibrary.org
For the next five Mondays, I’m going to be uploading 20-minute church history videos to YouTube on the theme “Spiritual Disciplines and the Expansion of Christianity.” The first video in the series is now up, covering an introduction to the series and Christianity before Constantine:
This is the first in a five-part series looking very quickly at the history of Christianity. I’d like to acknowledge the technical support from Pastor Ben Spears that made this possible — expect better videos as I get more practice!
I do two things in this week’s video:
First, I introduce my theme: spiritual disciplines and the expansion of Christianity.
Second, I run through church history from Acts to around the year 300.
If this were a university course, I would assign the following readings (all available online):
The Didache (c. 90).
Clement of Alexandria, Paedagogus, Bk 1, chh. 1-3
Henry Chadwick, The Early Church, pp. 32-73, 94-100.
Clement of Alexandria. See this page for his works.
Diocletian. See Eusebius, ‘The Martyrs of Palestine‘.
—. Lactantius, On the Deaths of the Persecutors, chh. 7-19.
Ignatius of Antioch. Letters.
Polycarp of Smyrna. Letter.
The evangelism books I mention towards the end
John Bowen, Evangelism for “Normal” People.
Bill Hybels, Becoming a Contagious Christian.
Rebecca Manley Pippert. Out of the Saltshaker and Into the World.
Roland Allen, The Spontaneous Expansion of the Church.
I missed a trick by not mentioning Michael Green, Evangelism in the Early Church.
This past Sunday is called ‘Gaudete’ Sunday — Rejoice! Sunday, in other words. This, I believe, comes from the Epistle reading that also doubled as Introit at the Tridentine Mass we attended on Sunday. It is from Philippians 4:4-7 and begins:
gaudete in Domino semper iterum dico gaudete
Or, in English:
Rejoice in the Lord always: again I say, rejoice!
Despite my current immersion in Pope St. Leo (or is it because of it?), I will not quote Tr. 11 for the Advent Ember Days (of which today is one). For that, you can go here or here (and please do!). For his Christmas sermon beginning, “Gaudeamus,” go here. Those who know Latin know where they can go already, I assume.
Instead, I would like to turn everyone’s attention to what the Latin word gaudete always makes me think of:
Christus est natus ex Maria virgine,
1. Tempus adest gratiae, hoc quod optabamus;
carmina laetitiae devote reddamus. Refrain
2. Deus homo factus est, natura mirante;
mundus renovatus est a Christo regnante. Refrain
3. Ezechielis porta clausa per transistur;
unde lux est orta, salus invenitur. Refrain
4. Ergo nostra contio psallat iam in lustro;
Benedicat Domino; salus Regi nostro. Refrain
Sing with me! This song inevitably makes me happy. I have been known to dance around the house singing the chorus. If you have no idea what the tune is, here’s a youtube video (poor-quality image, but the best recording I know):
And if you’re feeling all 39-Articles about a language not understood of the people, here’s what they’re singing:
Christ is born of the Virgin Mary,
1. The time of grace is here, this which we shall choose;
Let us return songs of happiness faithfully.
2. God is made mad with a wondrous nature;
The world is renewed by Christ who reigns.
3. The closed gate of Ezekiel has been passed through;
whence light arose, salvation is found.
4. Therefore let our speech now sing in purification;
May it bless the Lord; salvation is from our King.