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Christianity and the Secular Border Patrol

The Loss of Judeo-Christian Knowledge

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Edited By Barry Kanpol and Mary Poplin

Christianity and the Secular Border Patrol: The Loss of Judeo-Christian Knowledge centrally looks at how secular universities have dominated academic knowledge on the one hand and have also been a part of bias against Christian academics on the other. Authors generally ask for borders of understanding and collegial dialogue to bridge gaps of knowledge that exist because of this bias. Theoretical analysis and narratives from the field describe how overcoming extreme theoretical positions may allow for productive knowledge construction and a more harmonious relationship within the culture wars of our times, especially in higher education.

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8. An Argument for Service Learning as a Spiritual Avenue for Christian and Secular Border Crossings in Higher Education (Joe D. Nichchols)

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8.   An Argument for Service Learning as a Spiritual Avenue for Christian and Secular Border Crossings in Higher Education

JOE D. NICHOLS

Introduction

“Bless me Father for I have sinned.” And so begins the good confession of a multitude of Catholic believers. To divulge what someone has confessed is to defile the sacred conversation between the Catholic believer and their priest, or for a non-Catholic like myself, the intimate conversation between me and my God. However, within this chapter, I offer my heart-felt confession to the reader as an academic exercise with the intent to investigate and explore my own spiritual well being within the academy.

During my tenure in higher education, I have perhaps sinned for some 20 years in my lack of effort and failure to actively promote my spiritual and religious beliefs to my students and colleagues in a tangible, faithful, effort. My hesitation is rooted more than likely in public higher education’s efforts to support secular beliefs while failing to allow for the voices of Christian faith believers in the name of secular privilege while valuing the acceptance of all beliefs and philosophical perspectives as truth. However, for me personally, being a non-Catholic Christian and not bound to confessional foundations of faith, this chapter allows me a window for offering penitence in my effort to focus on the issue of Christian and secular border crossings in the higher education setting.

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