Jonathan Edwards Center expands to Brazil
The reach of Yale Divinity School’s Jonathan Edwards Center has extended once again, this time to Sao Paulo, Brazil, where the Andrew Jumper Graduate Center of the Mackenzie Presbyterian Institute has established an affiliated center, the Jonathan Edwards Centre for South America.
In announcing the strategic partnership on March 8, Davi Charles Gomes, president of Andrew Jumper Graduate Center, said, “In the middle of so many needs and concerns, many of us have a deep desire to bring to expression a kind of theology that has arms and legs! Jonathan Edwards’s practical theology was exactly that: biblical and reformed theology manifested in word and deed.
“Our hope is that our institution, together with our partners from Yale, will make use of the spaces that the Jonathan Edwards Center-Brazil will certainly generate, not only to make known the works of Jonathan Edwards, but also to challenge the theological community in Brazil.
The Jonathan Edwards Centre–Brazil will serve as a research, education and publication hub for the study of Edwards and evangelical history and develop links with the international academic community.
Adriaan Neele, associate editor and director of the Jonathan Edwards Center at Yale, who attended opening ceremonies in Sao Paolo, said, “The establishment of the Jonathan Edwards Center - Brazil at the Andrew Jumper Graduate Center of Mackenzie Presbyterian Institute is a significant expansion of Edwards scholarship and will serve widely both academia and the church.”
Edwards Center affiliates have previously been established over the past several years in Australia, Benelux, Germany, Poland, and South Africa.
Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758), pastor, revivalist, Christian philosopher, missionary, and president of Princeton University, is widely regarded as North America’s greatest theologian. He is the subject of intense scholarly interest because of his significance as an historical figure and the profound legacy he left on America’s religious, political and intellectual landscapes.
In recent years, a rapidly growing interest in Edwards as theologian has brought the man and his writings onto the world stage, pressing beyond the popular and more parochial image of Edwards primarily as American preacher and American historic figure. Increasingly, his writings are being consulted by religious leaders, pastors, and churches around the world, spurred by a growing recognition of the fervency and universality of the Edwards message and the acumen with which he appraised religious experience.
The interest in Edwards globally has been fuelled in part by the work of the Jonathan Edwards Center at Yale University, whose sole mission is to support inquiry into the life, writings, and legacy of Edwards by providing resources that encourage critical appraisal of the historical importance and contemporary relevance of America’s premier theologian. The primary means of achieving this is through the Works of Jonathan Edwards Online, a digital learning environment for research, education and publication, that presents all of Edwards’s writings, along with helpful editorial materials that allow the reader to examine Edwards's thought in powerful, useful ways. The Works of Jonathan Edwards Online 2.0 is accessible through the Center’s web site at: http://edwards.yale.edu/.