Five young scholars visit campus as Yale Divinity Library Stowe Fellows

This summer five young scholars—three from abroad—were awarded fellowships to conduct research at the Yale Divinity Library and attend the annual meeting of the Yale-Edinburgh Group on the History of the Missionary Movement and World Christianity, held June 30-July 2 at YDS.

These fellowships were supported by the David M. Stowe Fund for Mission Research, established as a memorial to Stowe, who served as executive vice-president of the United Church of Christ’s Board for World Mission from 1970-1991. The Yale-Edinburgh Group is hosted in alternate years by the University of Edinburgh and Yale Divinity School.

The 2011 Stowe Fellows were:

  • Joshua Broggi, a Ph.D. candidate at the Centre for the Study of World Christianity at the University of Edinburgh.  His research focuses on how Christianity changes when it moves into new cultures, and whether there are ways of articulating boundaries for those changes
  • Jaekeun Lee, also a Ph.D. candidate at the Centre for the Study of World Christianity at the University of Edinburgh, is studying American Southern Presbyterian missionaries and their contributions to the shaping of Protestantism in Honam, the southwestern region of Korea.
  • John Heavens, a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Cambridge, is writing about the foreign work of the International Committee of the North American Young Men's Christian Association between 1895 and 1937.
  • Darin Lenz is on the faculty of Fresno Pacific University. His work explores how the concept of “living by faith,” the practice of relying on prayer in place of open solicitation for the financial support of a religious institution or charity, was disseminated as a fundraising methodology by mission proponents, missionaries, and indigenous Christian leaders from the last half of the nineteenth through the first quarter of the twentieth century (1859-1925).
  • Carol Ann Vaughn Cross, a faculty member at Samford University, is working on a biography of China missionary Martha Foster Crawford (1830-1909).

The five Stowe fellows were able to take advantage of the Yale Divinity Library’s world-renowned collections documenting the history of the missionary movement and world Christianity, including manuscript and archival collections, as well as books and periodicals that are available in very few repositories.

The YDS Day Missions Collection today makes up approximately one third of the Divinity Library's 500,000 volumes and constitutes the bulk of its manuscript and archival collection. Its scope has enlarged from a fairly narrow focus on training missionaries to become one of the preeminent collections documenting the thought, history, and practice of world Christianity.

Posted: 07/29/2011