Today I am launching my Global Scholars Canada fundraising campaign.
As many of you know, I have been a member of Global Scholars Canada for one year, and under this organization I have been working at several projects drawing on my years of teaching, researching, and writing experience. Last year the second edition of the award-winning Political Visions and Illusions was published, and since then it has already gone into three printings, having sold out last summer after the Rev. Tim Keller endorsed it over Facebook and Twitter. I now have another completed manuscript, which I hope to submit to a publisher in the near future with the support of two high-profile endorsements.
Ironically, the COVID-19 pandemic, while restricting so many of us to our homes for months, has opened for me an amazing number of opportunities for online lectures and interaction with people around the globe. Prior to March of this year, I had travelled to Brazil, Germany, and various places in the United States to speak to specific audiences about my work and writings. I was set to go to North Carolina in late March, but this was cancelled the week before as quarantines descended upon the world. But quite suddenly, as knowledge of such platforms as Zoom took off, I was bombarded with invitations from all over, as people were coming to recognize that they needn't pay to bring me to them physically but could have what might be the next best thing—a virtual presence along with online interaction.
It would take too long to list everything that I've been up to recently, but I will touch on the highlights. My article for a Ukrainian journal will shortly be published, and along with that have come opportunities for distance teaching in Ukraine. My scheduled trips for this month to Germany and Finland did not come about, as I had already suspected for months, but my paper for the Finnish event has been translated into Finnish and will shortly be published by Kompassi, the think tank of the Finnish Christian Democratic Party. The article introduces the Reformed tradition of social and political reflection to an historically Lutheran country, and my contacts have expressed excitement about it, as it is quite unfamiliar to them.
In August and September I delivered formal addresses to two conferences, first to the 1ª JORNADA DE DIREITO E FÉ CRISTÃ in Brazil on the subject of “The True Nature of Freedom,” drawing on my second book, We Answer to Another: Authority, Office, and the Image of God; and second to the conference of l'Abri Brasil on the subject of “Faith and Politics in a Secular Era.” Both were well received. Last month I received two bound copies of the published proceedings of a conference I addressed in 2018 in Germany, titled, Europa, wie hältst du's mit der Religion?, containing my article, “The religious roots of political ideologies and their impact on Europe.” Last month I spoke with students at the Veritas Forum, an organization based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, near the campus of Harvard University. I have had several radio interviews, the most recent one on the day after the US election with Chicago station WYLL.
Last month I was in the States attending to my late father's affairs, and during that time I spoke to two student groups led by Michael Fallon, the Christian Reformed Church's campus minister for McMaster University and Mohawk College, from my sister's home near Chicago.
I am now preparing five half-hour lectures for the Jonathan Edwards Seminar in Brazil on the subject of my first book. This has taken some time, and I have had to familiarize myself with new recording and editing software. I suspect I will be doing more of this sort of thing in future.
I might also mention that the thesis of Political Visions and Illusions was recently mentioned in a sermon delivered at Parkside Church near Cleveland, Ohio.
All of these efforts of mine require considerable time and energy. I sometimes receive honoraria from the parties that have invited me to speak, but these do not adequately compensate me for time spent on these many activities. If you believe as strongly as I do in the power of the gospel to reshape, not only individual lives, but entire countries like Brazil, would you consider supporting my work, both financially and in your prayers? If you click here, you will learn how you can contribute to my work. I am excited at the ways God is using Global Scholars to bring the blessings of Christian scholarship and Christian scholars to the larger world. My own work is connecting me, not only with Brazil, but also with Germany, Finland, Ukraine, Indonesia, and elsewhere. Please consider a monthly or one-time contribution as you feel led. It does not have to be a large amount, as small amounts add up over time. And please do pray for God to bless my work. Thank you in advance.
Your donation contributes to a larger organization to which member scholars are accountable, filing reports of their activities on a regular basis to the board. Global Scholars Canada has both IRS and CRA numbers, which means that Americans and Canadians will receive a tax receipt at the end of the calendar year.
Please take a look at my blog, Notes from a Byzantine-Rite Calvinist which I am now updating more frequently than in the recent past. This will give you a good idea of what I've been up to over the past months. I plan to use this as my primary means of informing my supporters of my activities. Thank you for your support, and please pray for me in this new and exciting work.