As John Collins turned 90 the indefatigable Bart Koet organized a webinar honouring his contribution to the study of diakonia. There are contributions from Sven Erik Brodd, Anthony Gooley, Anni Hentschel, Edwina Murphy, Pauliina Pylvänäinen, as well as from Bart Koet himself, and a response from the birthday boy and honoree.
The webinar was recorded and may be seen here.
Last week saw another excellent Zoom seminar from Tilburg presented by Jonathan Cornillon (Sorbonne) based on his book Tout en commun? La vie économique de Jésus et des premières générations chrétiennes (Cerf Patrimoines, 2020) with responses from Bart Koet and Paul van Geest. The Didache gets a look-in, which is justification enough to post the details here.
This can be watched here, where there is more interesting stuff.
…and so, virtually, to Melbourne, where I had the pleasure of attending the Biblical and early Christian seminar of the ACU to respond to Stephen Carlson on “Presbyters in Papias”… what’s not to like?
Stephen argued that the term in Papias denotes a channel of tradition. I could not disagree; in response I suggested that this mirrors forming Jewish usage. Although the main evidence for this is later (M Erub. 3.4; M Aboth 1.1), we may note Mark 7:3 and par. as indication that this usage was ancient. In this context we might not overlook the significant presence of Jews in Hierapolis. Papias receives from the elders the traditions about Jesus.
Although I doubt that the Christian use of the term for an office has anything to do with Judaism, this usage is different. And so I revise, or at least qualify slightly, the opinion in Original Bishops that presbyteros has no Jewish heritage. It does not when we speak of the presbyters within communities, but perhaps does so when the bishops of individual churches, gathering together in part as agents of tradition, refer to themselves as the presbyteroi of a particular place. Paul Bradshaw had already pointed out to me the usage at Exodus 24:1 (LXX) and Numbers 11:16–17 (LXX); this usage is thus consistent.
The essay will appear in a book on presbyters to be published in WUNT and edited by Bart Koet. We look forward to this.
As intimated in a previous post the papers from the online deacons seminar have now been posted and can be seen here:
Papers are by Gerard Rouwhorst on Ephrem, Andreas Mueller on Chrysostom, and summary statements from Esko Ryökäs, Bart Koet and Edwina Murphy.