What is Hear the Voice and Prayer

Hear the Voice and Prayer is a podcast exploring Christianity and belief in Early Modern Europe. On October 31, 1517 an Augustinian monk named Martin Luther posted 95 questions regarding the authority of the Pope to forgive sins.

Over 270 years later, on March 2, 1791 the English holiness reformer and founder of Methodism John Wesley went to his eternal reward. In the years between these two men, the world between Luther and Wesley, Europe experienced cascading, bloody, and tumultuous religious transformations as Christendom split into rival expressions of belief.

This podcast explores the nuances, cultures, beliefs, structures, and conflicts of this central period in the history of Christianity and European society. It features and is produced by the faculty and students at Olivet Nazarene University. Most episodes feature the research of students in the Olivet History Program’s course HIST 352  Reformations: Early Modern Europe. 


Kyle Robinson, Ph.D. is an historian of Early Modern and Enlightenment Europe. His research focuses on the relationship of 18th century European intellectual transformations to the world of Christian belief, particularly in England. He joined the Olivet Nazarene University history faculty in 2019 where he offers courses on European History with an emphasis on cultural history, the history of ideas, and the history of Christianity. 


Shemara Fontes is a student from Olivet Nazarene University majoring in Multimedia Communication major originally from the Cape Verdean islands. Upon graduation she plans to continue to work with media serving in the communications team for the African Region of the Church of Nazarene. Shemara is the Producer and editor of  Hear the Voice and Prayer, working closely with Dr. Robinson as a part of her Senior Practicum to help bring this podcast to life.


Madeline Johnson is a Multimedia Communication major at Olivet Nazarene University ’23 who is originally from Elmhurst, Illinois. Upon graduation she hopes to work in residential life at university level, and also work as a freelance podcast editor. Madeline is the Producer and editor of  Hear the Voice and Prayer, working closely with Dr. Robinson as a part of her Senior Practicum to help bring this podcast to life.

ONU HIST 352 Reformations: Early Modern Europe Course Description

How can we study belief? What are the longer term implications of religious change in society? These connected questions form the core of our course and our investigation of Early Modern Europe (c. 1450-1789). Indeed, the meaning of belief was the central issue of contention in Europe from the dawn of the Renaissance until the twilight of the eighteenth century and its Revolutions.

The shattering of the Christian consensus and the rise of the empirical frame was a pathway cleared with the twin swords of Humanism’s cry of ad fontes and Luther’s injunction of sola fide. The route uncovered was a journey to the  “Modern” in all its beauty and ugliness. Yet, stones lay upon this trail, rocky reminders whose pain and obstacle convey the irony that Europe’s greatest religious revolution resulted in the ultimate secularization of the continent and of the West in general. Still, secularization, caught as it is in a dialectic with Christianity, is a form of belief, and belief remains central.

The effort to experience, define, and understand both acceptable and unacceptable beliefs will be our compass to map Europe’s Early Modern world, the world of unfolding Reformations. This course will consist of primary and secondary readings, lecture, classroom discussion, as well as multiple student writing assignments culminating in a final research based student podcast.

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