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This episode is different. This is the beginning of a series of messages about the history of the university, student missions movements, and the powerful influence of the university as it shapes the culture, the leadership, and the destiny of nations.

I discuss the ancient history of the universities, the early prototypes of universities, as was taught by Dr. Steve Cochrane in our first School of University Ministries in Delhi, India in 2004. We cover the School of Athens and the resulting worldwide influence of that small Academy. I then discuss the earliest Christian university prototypes in what is modern day Iraq.

I move quickly into the missionary influence of a particular university founded by Ignatius of Loyola, the Gregorian University. This Jesuit university sent out missionaries around the world, including Francis Xavier and Mateo Ricci, both of whom had immense influence in China and Japan.

Then I give a quick overview of the life of Jan Amos Comenius, an early pioneer of the notion of a pansophic university that would teach all things to all nations.

This episode only introduces the idea of the influence of the universities. We will continue this topic.

I close this episode with a story about five college students who changed history through prayer. The Haystack Prayer Meeting, which took place in 1806 at Williams College in western Massachusetts, is credited for the birth of the North American Missionary Enterprise.

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