The Wycliffe Blog - Vestigia Dei

Vestigia Dei  – is a Latin term meaning “traces of God.” As a theological term it is associated with natural theology – that is, the view that there are vestiges of God within creation. We’ve chosen this term as the title of the Wycliffe College blog because our hope is that through these writings, readers might glimpse evidences for God as our writers interact with the wider world. 

An empty pulpit in a church (photo credit: Mitchell Leach @unsplash)

The Temptation of the Godless Sermon

By Judy Paulsen

Some time ago I visited a church in which the sermon, delivered by a guest preacher, concluded with the sentence “If you do this you’ll be happy, and your neighbour will be happy.”

The Gospel reading that morning recounted the calling of the first disciples. The sermon asked the listener to consider if they would have responded as quickly to the call of Jesus as the first disciples did. It...

Wed, January 25, 2023

"The Napalm Girl" (photo credit: Nick Uts)

Jesus, the Napalm Girl, and Us

By Alan L. Hayes

If you’re near my age, or older, you likely remember seeing this photo in a newspaper in June 1972, probably on page one. It shows nine-year-old Phan Thi Kim Phuc, her clothes and most of her skin burned off by a napalm bomb that had just been dropped on her village from a South Vietnamese Skyraider military aircraft. Her face distorted by pain, she’s running down Route...

Mon, January 23, 2023


The Divine Key to Long Life and Prosperity in 2023

By Annette Brownlee

11 Come, children, and listen to me; * I will teach you the fear of the Lord.

12 Who among you loves life * and desires long life to enjoy prosperity?

13 Keep your tongue from evil-speaking * and your lips from lying words.

14 Turn from evil and do good*

seek peace and pursue it.  (Psalm 34:11-14)


A member of your congregation comes to you and says everyone...

Wed, January 11, 2023

Woman caring for a plant

Routines with a Bigger Purpose

By Stephen Andrews

Like many of you, I spend the first week of the New Year going through my diary, trying to anticipate some of the challenges and opportunities the next twelve months will bring. There’s the weekly rhythm of chapel services at the College, the regularly scheduled meetings with staff and faculty, the monthly gatherings of the Board and college committees, and the odd business trip. It’s a review I generally look...

Tue, January 10, 2023

John Wycliffe Morningstar logo

John Wycliffe's story—relevant for today

By Wycliffe College

The film "John Wycliffe Morningstar," produced by Trinity Digital Ltd., was released on Reformation Day—October 31. 

Wycliffe College partnered in the production of this docudrama because we believe that the story of our namesake—the fourteenth-century scholar, priest, theologian, Bible translator, and reformer John Wycliffe —still has relevance for today. The film’s director, Murdo Macleod (MM below) participated in an email interview with Wycliffe College Communications Director, Patricia...

Tue, December 06, 2022

Marion Taylor

“The Yeah, Yeah Experience” or “Communion Sweet from Heart to Heart”

By Marion Taylor

In my first year of graduate studies at Yale University, I was asked to be a teaching assistant in a course that allowed for “the yeah, yeah experience” to arise. (The “yeah, yeah experience” is the term given to describe the feeling women have when we realize how much we have in common with other women.) I had never been in a class that deliberately aimed to cultivate such...

Tue, November 29, 2022

Peter Robinson

The Church, God’s People on the Way

By Peter Robinson

“My soul longs, indeed, it faints for the courts of the Lord”

Psalm 84 is a psalm of longing or lament, and it is also a psalm of pilgrimage. Three times a year the people were commanded to make a pilgrimage to the temple to appear before the Lord (Exodus 23:14–17).

It is not difficult to imagine a group of people or pilgrims making their way slowly and carefully as...

Tue, November 22, 2022

Joseph Mangina

Wycliffe as a School for “Generous Orthodoxy”

By Joseph Mangina

In late October I attended a conference at Yale commemorating the centenary of Hans Frei (1922-1988), one of the leading historical theologians of our age, and the most important figure in the so-called “Yale School” of theology and scriptural interpretation. His masterful The Eclipse of Biblical Narrative and The Identity of Jesus Christ should be required reading for theological students, clergy, and others interested in the recovery of traditional Christian...

Fri, November 18, 2022

The Gospel of Matthew

Kyrie, Matthew, and Anti-Judaism, or Why Read the Gospel in Greek

By Catherine Sider Hamilton

I don’t often think about Kyrie – and, in fact, when I saw the name, just like that, “Kyrie,” in my newsfeed last week I thought I was seeing the Greek word kyrie, meaning “Lord,” as in kyrie eleison, “Lord, have mercy.” That was an exciting moment: New Testament Greek breaking the social media barrier (I briefly thought). It turned out we were talking about a basketball star.

Nevertheless, NT...

Thu, November 10, 2022

online church

Jesus: A Missing Person?

By Stephen Chester

I joined the faculty at Wycliffe in 2019 only a few months before the start of the pandemic. I was in Toronto first, and visited a number of churches in-person, but by the time my wife joined me the city was in lockdown. We found ourselves trying to decide on a new church home in a world where we could only experience churches in virtual form. We were blessed by...

Wed, November 02, 2022