The Moravian Library Project, coordinated by the Center for Moravian Studies in Bethlehem, has sent packages of scholarly books to libraries of theological schools in many provinces of the Moravian Unity around the world.
The idea was born at an international Consultation on Moravian theological education, which took place in 2010 in Paramaribo, Suriname. Educational leaders and students from Moravian schools in eight different countries spent one week discussing the challenges and possibilities of preparing people for ministry in the Moravian Church today.
One problem that became apparent over the course of the meeting was the lack of resources in teaching Moravian topics, such as Moravian history, theology, and worship. As a result, the consultation recommended the improvement of library resources dealing with Moravian studies.
A Task Force was elected and given the assignment to compile a list of relevant books and articles to be sent to all libraries without adequate materials. This list was put together in 2011 by a joint effort of Br. Craig Atwood, Director of the Center for Moravian Studies, Bethlehem, Br. Paul Peucker, Director of the Moravian Archives at Bethlehem, and Br. Peter Vogt, Director of Theological Education for the Moravian Church in Germany.
The works are all in English and reflect the most recent scholarship on a wide variety of topics. Works cover topics including the Ancient Unity, renewed Moravian Church history, Zinzendorf, Moravian liturgy and worship, missions, and contemporary Moravian doctrine and practice.
Over the last six months, the Center for Moravian Studies with assistance of the Interprovincial Board of Communications in Bethlehem assembled the resources, secured permission from publishers for necessary reproductions, and organized the international shipment of the packages. Now eleven sets of books and articles, each including about 40 items, have been shipped to Moravian libraries in Tanzania, Suriname, Jamaica, Honduras, Nicaragua, South Africa and Alaska.
The Moravian Church Foundation generously provided funds for this project, so that these materials could be provided free of charge. Thanks are due to all who helped in the completion of this project. We hope that in years to come the resources will help students preparing for ministry in the Moravian Church as well as for lay persons and pastors who simply want to know more about the rich heritage and creative theology of the Moravians through the ages. We also hope that this Library Project will strengthen the bond of unity and fellowship among the Moravians world-wide.
What’s in a Moravian Library?
Here is a sampling of the titles among the more than 40 pieces provided to the Moravian Seminaries around the globe:
- The Theology of the Czech Brethren from Hus to Comenius by Craig Atwood
- The Labyrinth of the World and the Paradise of the Heart by Jon Amos Comenius
- Faith, Hope, and Love: A History of the Unitas Fratrum by C. Daniel Crews
- Pious Pursuits: German Moravians in the Atlantic World by Robert Beachy and Michele Gillespie
- History of the Moravian Church: The Renewed Unitas Fratrum, 1722-1957 by J. Taylor Hamilton and Kenneth G. Hamilton.
- Zinzendorf, the ecumenical pioneer: A study in the Moravian contribution to Christian mission and unity by Arthur James Lewis
- Count Zinzendorf. The Story of His Life and Leadership in the Renewed Moravian Church by John R. Weinlick
- Customs and Practices of the Moravian Church by Adelaide Fries
- “The Moravians and Their Music,” by Nola Reed Knouse in The Music of the Moravian Church in America
- Jesus Still Lead On: An Introduction to Moravian Belief by Craig Atwood
- Church Order of the Unitas Fratrum
The collection also includes a number of articles from modern history and theological journals.
Rev. Dr. Peter Vogt is director of Theological Education, European Continental Province, Niesky, Germany. In photo above, Peter is joined by Paul Peucker (center) and Craig Atwood (right)
From the November 2012 Moravian Magazine