Webcast: Faith, Freedom, and the Great War—Religious Meaning in World War I

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This discussion on the religious implications of World War I included Dr. Jonathan Ebel, author of Faith in the Fight: Religion and the American Soldier in the Great War; Judy Huenneke, Senior Research Archivist at The Mary Baker Eddy Library; and Christian Harder of The Herald of Christian Science, French and German editions. Complementing the program, Dr. Ryan Vigil conducted a men’s chorus in singing hymns from a songbook created for soldiers serving in the war.



Dr. Jonathan Ebel
Dr. Jonathan Ebel - professor of religion (United States religious history)Professor Ebel’s research involves religion and war, religion and violence, and lay theologies of economic hardship, all within the American context. He is author of G.I. Messiahs: Soldiering, War, and American Civil Religion (Yale, 2015) and Faith in the Fight: Religion and the American Soldier in the Great War (Princeton, 2010). He also co-edited From Jeremiad to Jihad: Religion, Violence, and America (California, 2012). Ebel is currently writing a religious history of the Great Depression in agricultural California, with the working title A Wandering Oklahoman Was My Father: Religion and Migration in America’s Great Depression.

Judy Huenneke
Judy HuennekeSenior Research Archivist at The Mary Baker Eddy Library, Judy Huenneke graduated from the School of Library and Information Science at Rutgers University. She completed a second master’s degree in history at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. She has worked for many years with the Archives of The First Church of Christ, Scientist, both as an archivist and records manager. She has also assisted in the preparation of several biographies and documentaries on Mary Baker Eddy. Huenneke’s work at the Library focuses on researching the history of the Christian Science movement, from its nineteenth-century beginnings to the present day.

Christian Harder
Christian HarderA native of both Austria and the United States, Christian Harder has also lived in Hungary and Italy. He has spent most of his adult career applying his knowledge of languages in various ways. He studied historical linguistics at Harvard University, with additional studies in nationalism and identity. He has twenty years of experience with international publications and service at The Christian Science Publishing Society, including radio production, international customer service, and product management. Harder is currently serving as the Issue Developer for the French and German editions of The Herald of Christian Science.

Dr. Ryan Vigil
Dr. Ryan VigilOriginally from the Boston area, Dr. Vigil currently serves on the faculty at the University of New Hampshire. He is also Hymn Specialist at the Christian Science Publishing Society, where he is on the team that produced the Christian Science Hymnal: Hymns 430–603. He holds an undergraduate degree in music composition and piano performance from the Manhattan School of Music; a master’s in composition and theory from Tufts University; and a master’s and doctorate in composition from Yale University. He has also taught at Amherst College, Colby College, Connecticut College, Tufts University, and Yale. Vigil’s writing on music has appeared in American Music and Perspectives of New Music. His activities in musicology and music theory address topics from the eighteenth century to the present day, including extensive work in hymnody that intersects with his activities at the Publishing Society.

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