Project Information

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The Ancient Churches Project is a special research project of Glencairn Museum, the museum of the Academy of the New Church. Thanks to sponsorship by the Museum and special support from the Paul Carpenter Fellowship Fund, the Ancient Churches Project has made significant progress. Currently, Amos Glenn is the primary researcher while Ed Gyllenhaal acts as editor of the lexicon entries.

An important part of the mission of Glencairn Museum is to support the study of the spiritual history of the human race as described in the theological works of Emanuel Swedenborg, an 18th century scientist, philosopher and theologian. The spiritual epochs described by Swedenborg as the "Most Ancient Church" and the "Ancient Church" are unique, and have remarkably little in common with philosophies of ancient history proposed by other 18th century European writers. However, the concepts underlying Swedenborg's philosophy of history are not contained in any one volume, but are scattered throughout dozens of works written by him during his theological period. The primary goal of the Ancient Churches Project is to collect all of the scattered references to the Ancient Churches, and to summarrize the major concepts relating to the subject in the form of a lexicon.

In general, the methodology of the project involves: 1) collecting the passages (with the help of NewSearch 98, Potts' Concordance, and other resources), 2) organizing the passages into categories by keyword (for example, "Antediluvians," "Covenant," "Idolatry," "Hieroglyphics," "Ancient Word"), and 3) writing a concise summary of each keyword based on the passages collected.

For more information about the Ancient Churches Project, please contact the editor, Ed Gyllenhaal, at (267) 502-2983, or via e-mail at the address below.