Reading Guide for By One Spirit by Karl Olsson
Part I: By One Spirit
Terms to know and clarifications will be listed in boxes at the first of each chapter
Chapter One – Tradition and Spirit
1-15 Identify the characteristics of Arndt, Spener and Franke and their understandings of Christianity. Against
what were each reacting?
15-18 Identify the characteristics and practical results of Zinzendorf’s piety.
18-23 Describe the nature of the Church of Sweden in the 17th century
23-34 Identify the forces behind and the results of the “Edict Against Conventicles”
Chapter Two – The Spirit and the Institutional Church in Sweden
35-42 Identify the effects of population explosion, role of education in the church, characteristics of AngloAmerican revivalism, “one thing needful”, and the role of alcohol in Swedish society.
42-46 Identify George Scott: who, where, why?, the “English Church”, lasting effects
Chapter Three – C.O. Rosenius and Ecumenical Evangelism
47-58 Identify C.O. Rosenius; characteristics of his piety, Pietisten, Rosenian conventicles: their nature and issues
with, major contribution of Oscar Ahnfelt
Chapter Four – The Revival and the Laity
“the Foundation”(see bottom p 74)
60-68 Distinguish between the criers/ Schartau who preached legalism and the evangelicals who preached free
71-74 Identify (lay) colporteurs and their education, Rosenius’ definition of call,
74-77 Identify the nature and goals of the Evangelical National Foundation
Chapter Five – The Revival is Structured
“P.P. Waldenstrom”: a prominent theologian whose views on the atonement will push the separation of the
Mission Societies from the Lutheran Church (see chapter 6)
78-86 Describe the nature of the Mission Societies, their theology, tensions with State Church, similarities &
differences with the Baptist movement
87-91 Read to understand questions about communion outside of the State Lutheran Church
91-94 Identify causes and main actor(s) in the “Uppsala Communion Case”
94-97 Identify the goals of the Committee on the True Church
Chapter Six – The division Among Lutheran Readers
98- 105 Unpack this phrase- p 104: “the gulf between the alliance-minded, non-confessional, laicizing group of
lasare and the confessionally stricter, clergy-oriented group” in regards to the new nature of colporteurs
105- 118 Identify P.P. Waldenstrom, Squire Adamson, differences between PP and C. O. Rosenius, cause and
effects of the Atonement Controversy, importance of “Where is it written?”, nature of “the doom of theology”,
political ramifications within the Foundation of Waldenstrom’s writings.
119-120 Swedish Mission Covenant
Reading Guide created by Christine M. Olfelt 8/2013
Chapter Seven: People and Places
“David Nyvall”: prominent educator in the American Covenant Church, “Nils Frykman”: prominent hymn writer in
the Covenant Church “Fridolf Risberg”: Mission Friends educator
126-128 Trace the changes in ministerial training
163-167 Read to understand the background of David Nyvall
167-170 Read to understand the background of Nils Frykman
172 Read to understand the background of Fridolf Risberg
Part II: Creative Travail
It may be helpful to read with the synod flowchart nearby: the online archives of the ELCA also have a helpful,
clear article on the Augustana Synod. The “Mission Friends” are spread thinly across America; some Lutheran,
some independent; coalescing and splintering, merging and being distracted into various synods, societies and
independents, with some joining into the Swedish Evangelical Mission Covenant in 1885
Chapter One – The Swedish Lutherans in American
regenerate (noun), folk church, symbolist, Synod of Northern Illinois (a district of the General Synod), Augustana
Synod, church discipline, “a polyglot church”
179-181 Identify the general pressures which pushed and pulled Swedish immigrants to the US and how they
changed over time
The rest of the chapter: read to unpack this statement: “The fact was that the synod was trying to ride two
horses.”p 194 Identify the main arenas where choice between “horses” had to be made.
Chapter Two – The Mission Societies
CA Bjork, EA Skogsbergh
Read this chapter to identify the forces behind the creation of mission societies and their gradual change into
churches. Note especially the role of Waldenstrom’s atonement views, of Skogsbergh’s style and of Rosenian
piety on these movements. It might be helpful to make a table listing each group’s location, dates, its initial
character/connections and what or who initiated change. The trends are more important than the details here.
Chapter Three – The Mission Meetings
Mission Friends, Mission Societies, Mission Meetings
Read to find the nature of the mission meetings: what drew people to them? How were they organized?
Chapter Four – Beginnings of a Church
Charles Anderson, Zions Baner
225-227 Trace the forces which caused Mission societies to form congregations. Identify the practical results.
Read to understand the role Charles Anderson tried to play in helping the Swedish Mission Friends.
Chapter Five – Three Synodical Ventures
James Knox, Ansgar College, Chicago Bladet,
Read to understand the split which produced the Mission Synod and the Ansgari Synod.
Understand Waldenstrom’s effect on synods and creeds
Reading Guide created by Christine M. Olfelt 8/2013
246- 252 Outline the priorities of Karl Erixon, JG Princell, John Martenson, Fredrick Franson
252- 256 Read to understand why the Mission Synod didn’t join with any established Lutheran body
258-262 Identify E.A. Skogsbergh’s style, actions and effects
Chapter Six – Union and Freedom
J.G.Princell, Fredrik Franson, MW Montgomery, Missions-Wannen
263-6 Identify the characteristics that prevented union between the Mission and Ansgar Synods
267-269 Note the beginnings of Free church movement
271-276 Note the influence of the Congregationalists
272-278 Dispensationalism: note especially the 6 doctrinal points which will cause friction p 278
279-283 More beginings of the Free church movement
Chapter Seven – The Conception of the Covenant
284- 290 Note the role of one congregation in particular in the formation of the Covenant
290-293 Read to understand the final split of the Free
Chapter Eight – Perspective and Insight
Read this chapter briefly, as a way to check if you recognize the issues mentioned.
Bottom Paragraph p 299-300 is a good synopsis of the religious climate amongst the Mission Friends in 1884-5
Part III: Baptized into One Body
Chapter One – The Child is Born
313-15 Understand the reasoning behind the choice of delegates
315-16 Note the arguments for forming a union
316-17 Note the initial response to the offer made by the Congregationalists
318-19 Identify the basis for section II of the constitution
321 Note the first official actions taken by the new denomination
Chapter Two- The Struggle for Identity
322-325 What lutheranisms did the young Covenant maintain? What did it let loose of?
325-334 This section is anecdotes illustrating the attacks against the tenuous structure of the young Covenant,
made by the Free. Read it for examples.
335- Read for the motives of both the Covenant and the Congregationalists in cooperating in the school venture.
337 -346 – Why did the venture fail?
346- 355 Trace the development of Missions-Wannen from a devotional paper to a thorn in David Nyvall’s side.
Chapter Three- The Structure Unfolds
PH Anderson, Nels Hultberg, Missionaren
356 – 357 Read to see how the balance between structure and living being are formed and maintained. Note
how Olsson calls the Annual Meeting “an appropriate skeleton”
358-60 Note the priorities of the Covenant from the very first, including an educated, registered clergy.
360-363 Note the pros and cons of the agreement with the Congregationalists
363-66 Identify the early steps in missions
Reading Guide created by Christine M. Olfelt 8/2013
366-372 Read to see how important a very few individuals were in the life of the young church.
372- 378 There is a whole book written about the Alaska Gold Scandal, should you be deeply interested. For
now, note the damage it produced to David Nyvall. There will be more on this topic in following chapters
Read to understand all the nuance of the last paragraph on page 378.
Chapter Four – The Quality of Mercy
P. Peterson, Olaus Olson, Henry Palmblad, Home of Mercy, Theodore Roberg,
AS you read this chapter note the interplay between independent, regional and denominational charities.
Chapter Five – Adventure in Missions
Adolph Lydell, A.E. Karlsson, Sheldon Jackson, Fredrik Franson, Peter Matson,
Read for indications of the historical scope of Covenant global missions, including and beyond evangelization.
Chapter Six – Perpetuating the Immigrant Church
Gustaf F. Johnson, Swede School,
458- 462 Read to see how associations are related to the denominational structure of the Covenant. (see also
the constitution on p 319, and pp483-485)
463- 485 What does evangelization to the Swedish Immigrants look like in the first decades of the Covenant? By
whom is it supported?
485-493 Identify the ways the young Covenant tried to keep its ethnic identity in the second generation.
Chapter Seven – The Making of the Minister
Read but you can (Skip 499-503)
Chapter Eight- Groping for an Image
Minneapolis Tabernacle, Axel Ost, WFA,
It might be helpful at this point to make a table of Covenant Controversies  listing where, over what, who is
involved, how it’s argued and how it’s resolved. Look for trends. The first one would be the Alaska Gold
Controversy referenced in chapters 3 and 5. This chapter deals with a controversy known as “Omaha”, its
continuation involving Joel Johnson and one involving Olga Lindborg.
Trace the changes in the nation and in the Covenant constituency that forced a need in the Covenant for more
agreement on theology than innocent acceptance of the Bible. The central paragraphs on page 535 are critical.
Pages 545-6 are crucial
Part IV: The Church Comes of Age
Chapter One-The New Center
Chapter Two-Growing Maturity in Missions
Read the last paragraph of the chapter first, then look for supporting evidence as you read the rest of the chapter
from the beginning.
Chapter Three-Changing Strategies in National Missions
Reading Guide created by Christine M. Olfelt 8/2013
Read each section to compare how your church today carries out the functions mentioned, compared to the
Covenant church of the 1930’s-50’s
588-590 evangelism
590 -596 youth and children (including another controversy)
596-599 home missions (church growth)
Chapter Four- Mutations in Institutional Patterns
Note how benevolence and educational institutions developed at both the denominational and regional
conference levels. Compare this to today.
618-620 Doughty controversy – to add to chart
623-624 CBI controversy – to add to chart
Chapter Five-Come Holy Spirit
Read and note what sorts of things provided unity in the Covenant at this time and what sorts of things were
problematic. With hindsight the reader can see the need developing for “Covenant Affirmations”.
Reading Guide created by Christine M. Olfelt 8/2013
1851 to 1885
Lutheran Synod of Northern Illinois
(a district of the General Synod)
Formed 1851
Old Lutherans/Symbolists
New Lutherans (American innovators)
2nd Church of Galesburg
Formed by some Swedes desiring polity
of Synod of Northern Illinois
Charles Anderson
Scandinavian Evangelical
Lutheran Mission Society
Formed 1872
Charles Anderson: tried to bring
society into Synod of Northern
Zions Baner
Institute at Keokuk
Educated clergy
Synodical structure, Ordination
Lutheran confessions
Scandinavian Lutheran Augustana Synod
Formed 1860 when Scandinavians seceded fromSynod of N. Ill
Old Lutherans/Symbolists
Scandinavian (Mostly Swedes but some Norwegians)
Esbjorn, Hasselquist, Carlsson
Mission Societies begin to
form in 1860’s
Swede Bend
Various Mission
Societies begin
gathering for
Mission Meetings
Swedish Evangelical Lutheran Mission Society
of Chicago
Organized 1868 Incorporated 1870
Able to grant licenses but approached Synod
of Northern Illinois/Charles Anderson for
Group of Swedes who are against educated clergy
and American Lutheranism…
Swedish Evangelical Lutheran Ansgari Synod
(middle of nowhere)
Swedish Evangelical Lutheran Mission Synod:
“Mission Synod” Chicago
Formed 1874
Forms 1873 without Charles Anderson
Charles Anderson, Ansgar College
Zions Baner
In 1878, taken over by Erixon, Martenson,
Princell, Franson (pre-cursors of the Free
Chicago Bladet
Many members join SEM
JM Sanngren, CA Bjork, EA Skogsbergh:
Rosenian evangelicals from Smaland
conservative, Waldenstromian, regenerate
membership, a Mission Society at heart
Missions Wannen
Members join SEMC, synod itself dissolves
when last member dies.
Synod Dissolves June 1885
Others follow Princell, etc.
Etc. into
Swedish Evangelical Mission
Formed February1885
Reading Guide created by Christine M. Olfelt 8/2013