Recently, Robert Woodberry created a stir when he published his findings on the impact that evangelical missionaries have had on developing countries. The current consensus among most anthropologists and sociologists is that missionaries have had an overall detrimental effect on the cultures in which they engaged. Woodberry, an assistant professor of sociology at the Univ. of Texas argues that, rather than exerting a negative influence, conversionist missionaries played a pivotal role in the rise of democracy in majority world nations. In fact, the evidence indicates that such missionaries were the key factor in those countries.
The Southeastern community has an opportunity to hear Dr Woodberry make his case. The Bush Center for Faith and Culture and the Drummond Center for Great Commission Studies are hosting a lecture by Dr Woodberry this Thursday, at 7 pm, in the sanctuary of Wake Forest Baptist Church. The church is located on the campus of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. You can register for the event here.