Christian History Institute (CHI) introduces the Christian History magazine and website, a print and multi-media self-study resource tracing major historic Christian themes and key individuals’ lives from the time Jesus lived on earth to the present. CHI delivers the entire archive of the Christian History magazine, presently 104 issues and growing, by downloadable files along with a multi-media website, packed with information designed for fast and easy access in the home, schools and church libraries. Programmed to serve as a self-study library or virtual encyclopedia of the historic record, CHI makes a vast storehouse of reliable Christian History easily accessible through Christian History magazine and website. Christian History magazine, the core research source for the website‘s study guides, was originally available by a paid annual subscription fee, but is now offered by donation, as a part of the website.
Christian History Institute and the Christian History magazine were founded in 1982 by Ken Curtis, a producer of Christian and topical films, best known for his Gateway Films’ legendary 1972 production, The Cross and the Switchblade. His production company, Gateway Films, later founded Vision Video, which produces and distributes Christian content worldwide. Curtis’ career as a pioneer of Christian themed films and movies is documented on the website of Vision Video, now managed by Ken Curtis’ son, Bill Curtis, along with its sister ministry, CHI.
In June, Christian History magazine introduces its latest issue #105 titled “Christianity in Early Africa: Ancient Traditions, Profound Impact.” The issue includes articles about the Christian lives and traditions of North African church leaders including: Tertullian, Augustine, Cyprian, Origen, Perpetua, Anthony, Maurice, Frumentius, and Syncletica. Available in full color on the CHI website, the issue is richly illustrated with stories, maps and photos relative to ancient Carthage, Alexandria and Hippo and is packed with influential but little-known facts. This issue will be especially valued by those interested in a deeper understanding of Africa’s profound impact on the church, as well as those interested in first century church history.
“With the help of our revised website, we’ve started to catch up to the vision my father, Ken Curtis, had 31 years ago when he started CHI. That was to offer an extensive but easily accessible historical library to every Christian leader and believer. My father believed Christians who knew the history of their faith would avoid errors of the past and be inspired and encouraged in their own faith walk. That vision is now a reality at no cost to CHI visitors.”
The CHI website combines a church history study guide; an archive of the entire library of the Christian History magazine as a reference, which can be searched century by century, along with a book In Context, containing 35 stories of seminal personalities and quotes that helped shaped western Christian history. The study guide provides keyword links to multiple site resources, as well as to the store. Users who explore the suggested study guide modules can search quickly and access related print, graphics and multimedia resources that are available immediately on the site. The study guide is segmented in four categories: Early Church; Medieval; Reformation and Post-Reformation, each containing 13 modules or weekly portions. Users, who cover one module per week, can complete the entire study in the course of one year (52 weeks). The site also offers “This Day in Christian History,” featuring an original short story of an important event from each day in the calendar year. These stories will serve as an ongoing education or devotion tool for all who are interested.
Additional offerings on the site include: The Torchlighters, CHI’s collection of children’s animated DVDs presenting heroes of the faith (11 titles and growing); Today in History, a listing of Christian history milestones organized by date providing a quick reference to events that took place on any given annual day; Anniversaries, an annual monthly anniversary list providing a quick reference to milestone events for any given month and a free text download for all Christian History magazine issues. New issues of the magazine are presented with artwork and links in an attractive online reader. Within their innovative donor-supported ministry model, CHI will send, free of charge, printed copies of future issues to all who request one. The CHI store page offers easy purchase of available Christian History magazine back issues and related books, DVDs, CDs and other reference materials, identified by on-site keyword searches. A blog is provided on the site, offering space for comment and discussions of study projects, the latest issue of Christian History magazine and related resource material.
“Choosing which course of study to pursue in Christian history can be daunting for many believers, as well as non-believers who wish to explore Christian beliefs,” said Michael Austin, a communications consultant and Christian commentator, who manages the Christian History Institute Blog on the website that will feature guest editorial comments, highlight relevant news stories of the day and recognize anniversary milestone dates. “Christian History Institute has researched and compiled a resource that is designed to bring memorable stories and lessons of Christian history out of the ivy halls of academia and into the hands of average believers. CHI’s innovative website helps visitors search a vast archive of valuable material and examine major milestones of Christian history. Their unique model of offering the magazine as a donation-supported ministry is refreshing.”
Contributions may be sent to Christian History Institute, P.O. Box 540, Worcester, PA 19490.