*** This is a rough transcript of today’s show ***
It is the 25th of November, 2021. Welcome to the Christian History Almanac brought to you by 1517 at 1517.org; I’m Dan van Voorhis.
If this is the first time you’ve ever come across this podcast, I am afraid to tell you that this episode isn’t for you. I mean, it could be. But this is a non-standard pod because when you have almost made 1,000 of these, you can zig or zag as the spirit leads you. And today is a holiday in the United States of America when we celebrate with the least of the white meats and, for some reason, the perennially terrible Lions play a memorable football game.
I think in the past, we’ve talked about the history of Thanksgiving. I’m not much for a holiday except the whole “thanksgiving” part of it. I need a reminder to be thankful. Today I’d like to take a second to say thanks and then give a little gratitude for the discipline of Church history.
So- let’s go.
1. 1517 has afforded me one of the opportunities to make this podcast every day. It takes time, resources, and putting up with me. They have continued to support my work as a scholar-in-residence and historian in the Digital world.
2. This show sounds excellent because Christopher Gillespie makes it sound great. He listens to every episode and takes out all the annoying popping and buzzing. He makes the music bed work initially, and I have received compliments for how he uses the music at the end to play with the words I’m saying.
3. You all. Seriously. When we hit a million downloads, I figured there was an audience, and I could stop watching the numbers. I wish I could see all of you, watch your face as something upsets or delights you, answer questions, and all the things that take place in the classroom. But this is the next best thing, and I can’t tell you how many times I’ve received an email from one of you and just the right time. I’m thankful that you have been patient with me as I tinker with formats, delivery, etc.…
And lastly- I’m thankful for church history. Let me explain.
My BA is in Theology- I thought about going into church work but realized in my early 20s that my gifts were not those of a pastor. And while I enjoy reading the work of exegetes and theologians, I am neither of those (professionally, we are all exegetes and theologians on some level). And so, as I wandered through grad school, it became apparent that history was where I was best suited. I like being a church storyteller. Like a genealogist, I enjoy showing you where you came from. And in doing so, I am continually humbled.
The story of the church is so messy. Tragically so, sometimes. I am thankful for the distinction between saint and sinner. It helps me understand myself, but also, it helps me come to grips with the past. I don’t have to try and justify the actions of bad people, even when they say they are doing it in the same of Jesus. And I can’t just write off the efforts of bad people in the church as if they weren’t sinners just like me.
Here at CHA and 1517, we are thankful for you and the community that we build, even strangely sometimes, through this medium. I will be cleaning out the mailbag in the next couple of days, so check those out.
We’re not going anywhere. We will be hitting episode 1000 in January, and with that, you will see something fun… that’s news for another day.
The last word for today comes from Colossians:
12 Therefore, as God’s choice, holy and loved, put on compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. 13 Be tolerant with each other and, if someone has a complaint against anyone, forgive each other. As the Lord forgave you, so also forgive each other. 14 And over all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity. 15 The peace of Christ must control your hearts—a peace into which you were called in one body. And be thankful people.
The Christian History Almanac for the 25th of November 2021 was brought to you by 1517 at 1517.org.
The show is produced by a man celebrating with black olives on all his fingers; he is Christoper Gillespie.
The show is written and read by a man who doesn’t want nuts in the stuffing. I’m Dan van Voorhis
You can catch us here every day- and remember that the rumors of grace, forgiveness and the redemption of all things are true…. Everything is going to be ok.