I maintain several guides to Internet resources, that is, directories which point to information available via the Net, and the items included are often hosted by remote servers. Background Information on Elizabeth T. Knuth lists my academic, professional, and Internet-related credentials. (In other words, why should you trust me?) But some visitors might also like background information on the pages themselves. What is the history, purpose, and intended audience of these guides? How are sites selected for inclusion?
In general, I prefer sites that:
There are rare exceptions. An important early Lutheran book is available in two forms: plain text from one of the major Lutheran denominations, and HTML from a white supremacist group. I stuck with the relatively low-tech version in this case.
I do not want to duplicate other people's work. For example, my Liturgical Studies and Liturgical Music page has little overlap with the Order of St. Benedict's liturgy page.
Primarily students and faculty in St. John's School of Theology · Seminary. Secondarily interested persons with some college education. Academic. Theology rather than religious studies.
The libraries where I work already had a theology subject guide among their web pages. In view of the importance of theology to our institutions, which are sponsored by two Benedictine monasteries, the library staff thought that a second perspective would be welcome. I thought that both simple alphabetical lists and directories grouped by method of access (e-mail, gopher, ftp, etc.) had outlived their usefulness. To offer something different, I hit on the idea of grouping resources according to majors available in the graduate school of theology. When the theology pages I compiled no longer fit the direction in which the library web site was going, they became part of my personal site.
My first consideration is what is required reading for graduate students and seminarians here. If it is required reading, and I can find it on the Net, it is guaranteed a spot on my theology pages. Second, I also include texts referred to in graduate courses as important, so that students may investigate them first-hand. If these primary texts cannot be found, my third choice is standard reference works or other resources dealing with topics studied here. This means that vouching for the orthodoxy of resources listed is not my highest priority--rather, I ask if this is something that graduate students of theology need to know about, good or bad. And finally, I do throw in some things that are in no way required, but which I think might be of interest or even fun for theologians and pastors.
Besides the languages mentioned above, I am also open to including links in Latin, Greek, German, Italian, Hebrew, or Chinese--and in that order, because I must ask someone else to translate the last two. I have a few Jewish resources, even fewer Islamic references, and no links at all to materials on Eastern religions, because the farther removed a religion is from Christianity, the less my competence to evaluate the quality of information. Blanket condemnations of the followers of other faiths are not welcome. If I see anything about an alleged "international Zionist conspiracy" or how Roman Catholics are supposedly all hellbound, you can forget about a link from my pages.
When it comes to theology on the Net, I have a very good idea where the bodies are buried. I am a volunteer for the Open Directory Project, and see many of the sites submitted in some areas of Christianity, although I tend to steer away from theology categories. I visit the campus bookstore at the beginning of semesters to see what is required reading for courses or for comprehensive exams, and then see if I can find it online. I perform searches in areas that interest me, and sometimes find something for the theology pages while looking for something else. I also check the On-line Books Page periodically.
Christians who are interested in, or who practice, this way of prayer.
I created this guide in 1995, by invitation from the webmaster.
Lectio Divina is the most selective of my guides, and intentionally so. The webmaster and I want to highlight the very best resources, not to be so comprehensive that the focus is lost. Not every religious text is suitable for use in lectio as prayer. Even some devotional writings and spiritual classics would not "work".
In addition to the languages I generally prefer, I would consider Latin or German.
My best hunting grounds are Christian Classics Ethereal Library and the St. Pachomius Library. I have found some resources, especially for the page About Lectio Divina, by searching. Others I stumbled across while looking for something else, and still others have been brought to my attention via e-mail.
Irregularly. The page about lectio changes on nearly a monthly basis. The other pages are fairly stable and can often go for several months without revision.
So if you have a great resource, how do you get my attention? I might see something in the newsgroups I frequent. If you want to make sure that I know about it, send an e-mail to me, email@example.com . If it is not bulk e-mail, I guarantee that I will read it and take a look at your site.
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About Elizabeth T. Knuth's Resource Guides / Revised 10 June 2005 / © Copyright 1999-2005, Elizabeth T. Knuth / URL: http://www.users.csbsju.edu/~eknuth/bgonekrg.html