The Francis Schaeffer Collection - The L. Rush Bush Center for Faith & Culture The Schaeffer Legacy Project - An Interview With Dr. David Calhoun of Covenant Theological Seminary True Spirituality Class Francis Schaeffer at International Congress of World Evangelism, Lausanne, Switzerland, July 1974 Whatever Happened To The Human Race? - Playlist The Mark of A Christian Class - Playlist The Question of Apologetics A Christian Manifesto - Playlist

Thursday, December 15, 2011


100 years ago, one of the most significant leaders of the Christian church in the 20th century was born on Jan 30th, 1912 to a middle-class family of German descent in Germantown Pennsylvania. His name was Francis August Schaeffer.

People know of Schaeffer from his various areas of influence. Some encountered him personally at L’Abri, some know him from his early works, some know him from his films, still others know him from his public stance, later in his life, on the ethics of life, euthanasia and abortion. Others may have discovered Schaeffer through the tape ministry of L’Abri, or perhaps heard his radio broadcast across Europe. Some may have seen him personally during one of his many book or film tours, and some may know of his significant role at the first Lausanne Congress in 1974.

Depending on the sphere in which you discovered Schaeffer you may have picked up on something of what he was saying. Yet for many their exposure to Schaeffer has been incomplete, and some have even gotten the wrong ideas about him. However, beyond all of this, there is a generation today that has never heard of him, where once Schaeffer was a household name among Christians, you could say the name "Francis Schaeffer" in public, but today even some Christians might not know who you are talking about. Yet all the while, it is likely that many of the views and concepts of their worldview and those pastors who they are listening to have been impacted in some way by Francis Schaeffer.

So at the beginning of 2012, we are celebrating the Francis Schaeffer Centennial, by honoring him on his birthday weekend, with a celebration on January. 28th, 2012 (his birthday is January 30th) and reintroducing his thought and works through various ways throughout the coming year, staring with several videos and the Life & Works of Francis & Edith Schaeffer lectures. We are inviting you to join us by sharing the video above with everyone you know.

If you are in Kansas City, visit our Schaeffer Centennial page for details on the Francis Schaeffer Centennial event. If you plan to attend here in KC please let us know on our Facebook Event!

Saturday, December 10, 2011


One of the toughest things about Truth is the difficulty of being right. As important as it is to maintain the truth, it can be lost without a visible display of love. Being right can often be license for all sorts of injustice and abuses and can easily turn into it's own types of wrongs. This is something which Schaeffer dealt with deeply in his heart. During our recent interview with Dr. Calhoun, we had no idea that the event where he witnessed Schaeffer shedding tears was at the Lausanne Congress, 1974. Providentially, Dan had just been studying the event and discovered the video footage from which several of the pictures used in the interview were taken. In the interview we get a story from Dr. Calhoun that gives us a glimpse beyond the event and into the heart of the real man Francis Schaeffer. Here's a clip from the interview:

The significance of Schaeffer weeping is that it depicts both the character of Dr. Schaeffer and what moved him, but also the deep hurt that he felt over divisions in the church during the early splits over modernism (Religious Liberalism). If you are not up on the history, it started with the split from Princeton seminary by J. Gresham Machen in the 1920s and continued with various additional church and missions related splits from the mainline Presbyterian denomination. The splits did not stop there, later resulting in numerous other splits within the camps over Christian holiness, and other things. All of which deeply moved Schaeffer to the point of spiritual duress. For more on all of the splits I recommend reading Frame's paper called Machen's Warrior Children.

Now one can argue that a lot of these splits were necessary, especially the split from the mainline church. Yet it is also easy to see that considerable damage had been done to Christians by other Christians in some of these cases, in the cause of being right, which is itself wrong, and this is cause for lament. Right motives with wrong actions will always and forever be wrong.

The results of these deep feelings would eventually produce a crisis in Schaeffer, and out of that crisis came the work True Spirituality, which is at the foundation of all of Schaeffer's works and L'Abri. He further elaborated on this topic in a more succinct way in his work The Mark Of A Christian. So reflecting on Schaeffer's tears during this event should be at the heart of our studies. Understanding this event helps us to understand Schaeffer in the deepest of ways. Until we as a church understand the difference between saying "Truth & Love" and actually shedding tears over it, the problems will not be resolved. This was Schaeffer's heart and what disappointed him as time went on. The church has still not understood this balance, and until it does there will still be a need for teaching Schaeffer's works.