I was a little surprised when Sunday’s hymn was a well-known patriotic song, America the Beautiful. Singing the hymn in a religious setting had me thinking about the spiritual themes. So, I threw out a nonchalant post on social media to ask if singing this song in a church made it more of a prayer or a prophecy. Then, my friend Dr. Michael Wingert (Agora University) and I decided to discuss the topic. So, join us for this podcast discussion, where we cover various aspects regarding patriotism and Christianity. We also approach Western and Eastern Christian variance with as much sensitivity as possible.
Some of the questions that are raised in this podcast include, when is it appropriate to sing patriotic songs? Is there a cross-cultural value for patriotism in religious settings? Should Christian churches involve themselves in patriotic allegiances? Is America the Beautiful a patriotic song or a hymn (or both)? This topic has implications for people who are religious as well as everyone else. It is a small part of a much larger conversation about the virtue of the separation of church and state. You are invited to leave questions and comments below and join our discussion.
Interested in listening to other topics regarding religion and biblical studies? Explore the Scholarly Wanderlust Podcast.
Dr. Erica Mongé-Greer, holding a PhD in Divinity from the University of Aberdeen, is a distinguished researcher and educator specializing in Biblical Ethics, Mythopoeia, and Resistance Theory. Her work focuses on justice in ancient religious texts, notably reinterpreting Psalm 82’s ethics in the Hebrew Bible, with her findings currently under peer review.
In addition to her academic research, Dr. Mongé-Greer is an experienced University instructor, having taught various biblical studies courses. Her teaching philosophy integrates theoretical discussions with practical insights, promoting an inclusive and dynamic learning environment.
Her ongoing projects include a book on religious themes in the series Battlestar Galactica and further research in biblical ethics, showcasing her dedication to interdisciplinary studies that blend religion with contemporary issues.