Monthly Newsletter of Christian Scholars Review - Issue #11

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Monthly Newsletter of Christian Scholars Review
Monthly Newsletter of Christian Scholars Review - Issue #11
By Dr. Perry Glanzer • Issue #11 • View online
As someone teaching at Baylor, I often receive comments about the success of Baylor’s athletic programs. In response I am proud to tell them that our athletic department also wins in the most important area. They do engage in perhaps the best job of Christ-animated learning of any area at Baylor. Consider our findings from our survey of Baylor first and senior year students. At the beginning of their academic career, first year student athletes indicated that they attended church much less than first year students. In fact, only 32% of new student-athletes attended weekly or more (compared to 52% for all students), and 20% indicated they never attended. Yet, Baylor senior year student-athletes reported higher levels of religious service attendance than non-athletes, with 59% attending about weekly or more compared to 53% of their senior classmates. Senior student athletes also scored significantly higher on Christian Orthodoxy and Vertical Faith Maturity and were more involved with parachurch groups than their senior classmates who did not play an intercollegiate sport at Baylor. Under the right leadership, Christ can animate both your athletic culture’s pursuit of wholistic excellence and its pursuit of athletic excellence. May we go and do likewise.

Top 5 Christ Animating Blog Posts for January
Interview with a Recent College Grad: Rebecca Olsen
Guest Post – Pedagogical Reflections on Teaching Adult, Urban Seminary Students
Guest Post: Creating God-awareness through Intentional Faith Integration in the Science Classroom
Beyond Racial Divisions: A Unifying Alternative to Colorblindness and Antiracism
Ahmaud Arbery and the (Im)possibility of Justice
What's Old in CSR?
The most viewed CSR article or blog post this January was actually an old 2013 CSR article that received more than 4200 hits this month. The article, “In Bondage to Reason: Evidentialist Atheism and Its Assumptions,” takes on some of the atheist scholarship popular a decade ago and argues, “Although Dawkins and his fellow ‘evidentialist atheists’ are not fundamentalists vis-à-vis the simple question ‘Does God exist?,’ they are fundamentalists vis-à-vis their commitment to an evidentialist epistemology and their standards for good inquiry.” Clearly, there are many who are revisiting the authors’ arguments.
What's New in Faith-Learning?
Conferences are finally coming back and we’re looking forward to the upcoming Council for Christian Colleges and Universities International Forum in Grapevine, TX (Feb. 11-13). On Saturday, February 12th from 4:30-5:30, Margaret Diddams and I will be leading a session entitled, “Faith and Learning at Fifty: Faves, Frustrations, and the Future through the Lens of Christian Scholar’s Review.” We hope you will join us. I will also be leading a session earlier that same day from 10:45-12:00 entitled, “Identity Excellence vs. Identity Politics: A Christian Theory of Identity Development for Both Student Affairs and the Curriculum.”
Reflection from the Editor-in-Chief
Speaking of theory, one of the benefits of studying Christian higher education around the globe is that you discover American blind spots. As mentioned in earlier newsletters, one of those blind spots pertains to American professors’ failure to develop Christian theory.
This deficiency came into sharp relief for me when I studied Christian higher education in former communist countries. Professors in these countries had experienced what it was like to have an anti-Christian worldview and source for theory (atheistic forms of Marxist theory) infiltrate every aspect of their lives and every aspect of their education. Thus, they had to learn how to identify that influence and create Christian counter theories in disciplines such as history, psychology, etc. Moreover, once communism fell they had to create Christian theory that did not fall prey to the same ideological problems produced by Marxist scholarship that often elevated ideology over empirical realities.
Sadly, I find American academics often unaware of the theories that are shaping them (e.g., the current tendency to export the political theory of liberal democracy to make it a life philosophy that guides one’s whole life and not just one’s political outlook). Or I see professors who simply incorporate popular theories without subjecting them to Christian critical thinking that understands both their strengths and weaknesses (e.g., I just had a student e-mail a PowerPoint from a Christian professor addressing a controversial theory that only looked at strengths and not any possible weaknesses). In both cases, students fail to get what they supposedly are paying to receive–a Christian education. If we do not offer Christian critical reasoning and theory making at Christian institutions, we should not be surprised when graduates of Christian institutions fail to show Christian critical thinking later in public life.
Did you enjoy this issue?
Dr. Perry Glanzer

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