I have Swiss/German Mennonite ancestry and grew up on a dairy farm in Manor Township, Lancaster County in Pennsylvania, an agricultural area rich with indigenous and colonial roots. I attended Penn Manor High School and then became a first-generation college student, graduating from Columbia International University in 1994. I first pursued graduate study at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, completing an MA in Church History in 2000. Here, I studied under John Woodbridge and Douglas Sweeney. In 2007, I completed a PhD from the University of Iowa, where I studied under T. Dwight Bozeman. My dissertation examined the Moravians in Pennsylvania during the Great Awakening and their interaction with other evangelicals. Before coming to Grace College in 2008, I taught as a visiting assistant professor at Augustana University in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Over the years I have taught hundreds of students in classes in history, religious studies, and world civilizations. My research interests are in American evangelicalism, Pietism and Anabaptism. Much of my writing is about the Moravian Church.
My publications include:
Books (edited volumes)
Becoming Grace: Seventy-Five Years on the Landscape of Christian Higher Education in
America, Jared S. Burkholder and M.M. Norris, eds. (Winona Lake, IN: BMH Books, 2015)
The Activist Impulse: Essays on the Intersection of Evangelicalism and Anabaptism, Jared S. Burkholder and David M. Cramer, eds. (Eugene, OR: Wipf and Stock, 2012).
“As on the day of Pentecost: Revivalism, John Greenfield, and the Memory of August 13th,” Journal of Moravian History, forthcoming.
“Moravians Encounter New England’s Radical Evangelicalism,” Journal of Moravian History (Fall 2017).
“True Confessions: Doing Institutional History at the Intersection of Brethrenism and
Evangelicalism” Brethren Life and Thought Vol. 61 Supplement (Summer 2016).
“Pietist Prodigals and Brethren Identity: Joseph Müller, Sander Mack, and the Moravians,” Brethren Life and Thought (Spring 2013).
“Neither Kriegerisch” nor “Quäkerisch”: Moravians and the Question of Violence in
Eighteenth Century Pennsylvania,” Journal of Moravian History 12:2 (December, 2012).
“The Persistent Legacy of ‘Heart Religion’: An Introduction to Pietism,” Reflections: Journal of the Missionary Church Historical Society 13-14 (2011-2012).
“‘This Rends in Pieces all the Boundaries between Virtue and Vice:’ Tennentists, Moravians, and the Antinomian Threat in the Delaware Valley” Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography CXXXV:1 (January, 2011).
“From the Atlantic World to the Pennsylvania Back Country: Rediscovering the Enigmatic
Moravians” Fides et Historia 41:2 (Summer/Fall 2009).
“The Origins of Calvary Mennonite Church, Souderton, Pennsylvania” Mennonite Historians of Eastern Pennsylvania Quarterly (Spring 2002).
“Fundamentalism, Evangelicalism and Religious Dissent in the Lancaster and Franconia
Mennonite Conferences, Parts I and II,” Pennsylvania Mennonite Heritage (July,
“Unbecoming Heretics: Knowledge, Missionary Stories, and the Legacy of David Cranz in
North America” in From Greenland’s Icy Mountains: David Cranz’s 1765 “Historie von Grönland“ and the construction of Knowledge about Greenland, Felicity Jensz and Christina Petterson, eds., forthcoming.
“Community, Family, and Individual in Brethren Spirituality” in Brethren Spirituality: How Brethren Conceive of and Practice the Spiritual Life (The Brethren Encyclopedia,
“Heritage: Pietism, Anabaptism, and Evangelicalism” in Becoming Grace: Seventy-Five
Years on the Landscape of Christian Higher Education in America, Jared S. Burkholder and M.M. Norris, eds. (Winona Lake, IN: BMH Books, 2015).
“Vigilance: The Fundamentalism of Herman Hoyt and John Whitcomb” in Becoming
Grace: Seventy-Five Years on the Landscape of Christian Higher Education in America, Jared S. Burkholder and M.M. Norris, eds. (Winona Lake, IN: BMH Books, 2015).
“Misfits and Fundamentalists: The Question of Evangelicalism and Defection in the
Lancaster and Franconia Mennonite Conferences,” in The Activist Impulse: Exploring the Intersection of Anabaptists and Evangelicals, Jared S. Burkholder and David M. Cramer, eds. (Eugene, OR: Wipf and Stock, 2012).
I have reviewed books for Fides et Historia, the Mennonite Quarterly Review, the Journal of Southern History, Brethren in Christ History and Life, and the Journal of Moravian History.
Media and Popular Writing
Guest on the WNIT Public Television series, Politically Speaking, for a two-part show on “The Contemporary Role of Religion in Politics,” November 2018.
Guest post for the Anxious Bench blog: “Before ‘true love waits’ there was Josh McDowell and Petra,” January 2019 (Among the top ten posts for 2019)
Contributor for the blog, Pietistschoolman.com, 2013 – present. (Post referenced in Matthew Avery Sutton and Darren Dochuk, Faith in the New Millennium: The Future of Religion and American Politics (Oxford University Press, 2016).
“To Celebrate or Not? Memory, Oppression and Luther’s Reformation,” Grace Connect
“Spreading Light in a Dark World: The world wars inspired many Christian relief efforts,” Christian History Magazine 121 (Spring 2017).
Interviewed/quoted in Sarah Eekhoff Zylstra, “Crisis Averted: Christian Colleges Avoid Split over Same-Sex Marriage in Christianity Today (October 26, 2015).
C-SPAN broadcast of “Religious Pacifists and the American Revolution” for Lectures in
History series, May 2015.
“As on the Day of Pentecost: Moravians, the Holiness Movement, and the Thirteenth of
August,” Bethlehem Conference on Moravian Music and History, October 2016.
“From Heretics to Saints: Moravians in the Evangelical Imagination,” Bethlehem Conference on Moravian Music and History, October 2012.
“Between Kuyper and Comenius: Could Pietist Virtues be Scholarly Virtues?” Biannual
meeting of the Conference on Faith and History, October 2012.
“Pious Prodigals: Sander, Müller, and the Formation of Brethren Identity,” Young Center Conference on Pietist and Anabaptist Intersections in Pennsylvania, June 2012.
“Radical Protestants and the Politics of Empire: Moravian Aspirations in British North America,” Coloquio Internacional: Historia, Protestantismo e Identidad en las Américas, Mexico City, Mexico, October 2011.
“Betwixt and Between: Moravians, Liminality and the Tragic Tale of Jacob Lischy”
Bethlehem Conference on Moravian Music and History, October 2008.
“Winona Lake, Pennsylvania Mennonites, and the Long Arm of Popular Evangelicalism”
Biennial Meeting of the Conference on Faith and History, September 2008.
“Anglo-Moravians and ‘Tennentist’ Propaganda: The Nature of Moravian-New Light
Relations in the Delaware Valley, 1741-1748,” Pietism Studies Group in conjunction with the Annual Meeting of the American Society of Church History, January 2008.
“How can this justly be called a catechism?’ Religious Instruction, Confessional Identity and Moravian Itinerants in the Mid-Atlantic Colonies,” Biennial Conference of Moravian Music and History, April 2006.
“The Irregular career of Pennsylvania Minister Jacob Lischy,” Midwest Regional Conference of the American Academy of Religion, April 2005.
“Piety and Ecumenism in Eighteenth-Century Pennsylvania,” Biannual Meeting of the
Conference on Faith and History, October 2004.
Editorial Board, Journal of Moravian History, 2017 – present.
Manuscript reviewer for Journal of Moravian History, 2013 – present
Manuscript reviewer for Brethren Life and Thought, 2013 – present
Archives Consultant, Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches, 2013—present.
Session Moderator, “Christianity, Science, and Technology in Anglo-American Context,” Conference on Faith and History, October 2018.
Program Chair, Sixth Brethren World Assembly, Winona Lake, IN, August 2018.
Session Moderator, “Martin Luther and the ‘Second Reformation’” American Society of
Church History annual meeting in conjunction with the American Historical Association annual meeting, January 2017.
President, Pietism Studies Group, January 2015 – January 2017.
Panel Moderator, “Douglas H. Shantz’s Introduction to German Pietism: Protestant Renewal at the Dawn of Modern Europe,” Central European History Society in conjunction with the American Historical Association annual meeting, January 2015.
Vice President, Pietism Studies Group, January 2013 – January 2015.
Book Review Editor, H-Pietism (online listserv and discussion forum) 2012-2014.
Centennial Celebration Committee, Town of Winona Lake, 2013.
Session Moderator, “Shifting Identities among American Anabaptists,” Biennial meeting of the Conference on Faith and History, October 2012.
Program Chair, Student Conference, Biennial meeting of the Conference on Faith and
History, October 2012.
Panel Moderator, “Is Popular History Real History?” Biennial meeting of the Conference on Faith and History (student conference), October 2012.
Program Chair, Chicagoland Christian College History Conference, April 2012.
Steering Committee, Pietism Studies Group, 2011 – present.
Session Moderator for “Denominational Perspective, Histories and Insights,” Biannual Meeting of the Conference on Faith and History, October 2010.
Graduate Student Representative and Executive Board Member, Conference on Faith and History, 2005-2007.
Panelist for, “The Education of Historians for the Twenty-first Century,” Biannual Meeting of the Conference on Faith and History, September 2006.
Session Moderator, “Those Shifting Sands of Historiography,” Biannual Meeting of the
Conference on Faith and History (student conference), September 2006.
Awards and Recognition
Alva J. McClain Award for Faculty Excellence, Grace College and Theological Seminary, 2015.
Snowden Fellowship, Young Center for Anabaptist and Pietist Studies at Elizabethtown College, fall 2014.
Sabbatical, Grace College, fall 2014.
Research and writing course load reduction, Grace College, 2013-2014.
Faculty Development Grant, Grace College, 2012-2013.
Research and writing course load reduction, Grace College, 2012-2013.
Faculty Development Grant, Grace College, 2011-2012.
Research and writing course load reduction, Grace College, 2011-2012.
Teaching Assistantship, University of Iowa, 2006 – 2007
Teaching Assistantship, University of Iowa, 2005 – 2006
Teaching Assistantship, University of Iowa, 2004 – 2005
Teaching Assistantship, University of Iowa, 2003 – 2004
Teaching Assistantship, University of Iowa, 2002 – 2003
Graduate Fellowship in Religious Studies, University of Iowa, 2001
Professor T.B. Madsen MA Thesis Award, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, 2000.
U.S. History Survey to 1877
U.S. History Survey from 1877
World History and Historical Method
Civil War and Reconstruction
Progressive Era to Atomic Age
Contemporary America and the World
Latin America and the Atlantic World
Islam, Politics, and the Middle East
Western Civilization I
Western Civilization II
Early Modern Europe
Introduction to World Geography
Introduction to American Government
Introduction to Political Thought
Introduction to World Religions
Judaism, Christianity, and Islam
Religion in American History
Introduction to Historical Preservation
Capstone Seminar in History and Political Science
Independent studies and readings courses as needed