$4.2M Dollar Study…on Joy?

Joy. Theology. The good life.

$4.2 million dollars?


The John Templeton Foundation has awarded a $4.2 million grant to the Yale Center for Faith and Culture at Yale Divinity School to conduct a three-year research project to develop a theological account of joy and the good life, in order to recover joy as a central theological category and human experience.

Read the full announcment here.

Visit the Theology of Joy and the Good Life Project here.

Listen to the Huffington Post interview the project’s “principle investigator,” theologian Miroslav Volf, here.

Watch scholars answer “What Is Joy?”:


Is Joy a Pipe Dream?

The Yale Center for Faith and Culture recently launched an ambitious initiative about joy.

Theology of Joy gathers various theologians and academians “to build a transformative movement driven by a Christian articulation of the joy that attends a flourishing human life.”

One of the more interesting interviews is Miroslav Volf and N.T. Wright discussing a theology of joy:

Worship: The Accidental Funeral?

John Stott:

When I attend some church services, I almost think I have come to a funeral by mistake. Everybody is dressed in black. Nobody talks or smiles. The hymns are played at the pace of a snail or tortoise, and the whole atmosphere is lugubrious. If I could overcome my Anglo-Saxon reserve, I would want to shout, “Cheer up!” Christianity is a joyful religion, and every service should be a celebration. I am told that Archbishop Geoffrey Fisher said before he died: “The longer I live, the more convinced I am that Christianity is one long shout of joy!”

The Living Church, p. 30

A Hymn on the Return of Joy

William Cowper–

1 When darkness long has vailed my mind,
And smiling day once more appears;
Then, my Redeemer, then I find
The folly of my doubts and fears.

2 I chide my unbelieving heart,
And blush that I should ever be
Thus prone to act so base a part,
Or harbour one hard thought of thee.

3 O let me then at length be taught
(What I am still so slow to learn)
That God is love, and changes not,
Nor knows the shadow of a turn.

4 Sweet truth, and easy to repeat!
But when my faith is sharply tried,
I find myself a learner yet,
Unskillful, weak, and apt to slide.

5 But, O my Lord, one look from thee
Subdues the disobedient will;
Drives doubt and discontent away,
And thy rebellious worm is still.

6 Thou art as ready to forgive
As I am ready to repine;
Thou, therefore, all the praise receive;
Be shame and self-abhorrence mine.