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Thursday, May 20, 2010

DVD: The History of Christianity

I had the chance to watch and review the first DVD in the BBC series The History of Christianity.  Here's an excerpt from the publicist's email that captured my attention:
A History of Christianity: The First Three Thousand Years is a six-part series co-produced by the BBC, the Open University, and Jerusalem Productions and presented by Diarmaid MacCulloch, one of the world’s leading historians and Professor of History of the Church and Fellow at St. Cross College, Oxford. As MacCulloch reveals the true history of Christianity, he explores the question, “What does it really mean to be a Christian?”

While most Christian histories start with St. Paul’s mission to Rome, MacCulloch asserts that the Christianity stayed much closer to its Middle-Eastern roots and that, in fact, the first Christians actually took the eastern road from Jerusalem, spreading their faith across Asia, even to parts of China
I am fascinated with the way that Christianity has, over time, adapted itself to the cultures that it comes up against so I figured this DVD would be right up my alley ... and I was right.

MacCulloch takes the viewer on a tour of Asia, following the route that Christianity took as it expanded eastward.  He gives a little of the history of each area and the controversies relating to the spread of Christianity there.  He also interviews religious leaders from a variety of faiths to get their perspectives on the historical events he's exploring.

I found this show so interesting that I've watched the DVD twice already. I'd love to watch the entire series - I can only imagine what I'd learn!

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