Dr. Holly Ordway
Dr Holly Ordway is a poet, academic, and Christian apologist; she is the Chair of the Department of Apologetics at Houston Baptist University, and teaches in the MA in Apologetics program, which focuses on cultural apologetics. She has a doctorate in English Literature from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, an MA in English Literature from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and an MA in Christian Apologetics from Biola University.
She is the author of Not God’s Type: A Rational Academic Finds a Radical Faith (Moody Publishers, 2010) and the forthcoming Literary Apologetics: An Introduction (Moody Publishers, 2014). Her web site is <www.hieropraxis.com.>
I am convinced of the value of both Reason and Imagination in communicating the truth of the Christian faith. I am committed to the project of evangelism and discipleship in the spirit of C.S. Lewis’ “mere Christianity.”
I speak and write regularly on literature and its role in Christian apologetics and spiritual growth. My particular areas of interest in literary apologetics are fantasy literature, poetry, and the work of the Inklings, especially J.R.R. Tolkien, Charles Williams, and C.S. Lewis.
Not God’s Type:
A Rational Academic Finds a Radical Faith
(Moody Publishers, 2010)
“Some topics in Apologetics are not often given the serious treatment they deserve. Ordway is a careful thinker who has, to her credit, found a pastorally sensitive but interesting approach to a pivotal topic. Though this kind of personal topic is often underserved, Ordway has dealt with it in a rigorous way.”
Dr. John Mark Reynolds, Director of the Torrey Honors Institute and Professor of Philosophy, Biola University.
“The writing is lucid and engaging, as is the narrative itself – it is a great affirmation to believers to witness in the pages of the book the timeless truths of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the continuing work of the Holy Spirit, and the fellowship of the saints.”
Dr. Karen Swallow Prior, Chair, Department of English and Modern Languages, Liberty University
Hieropraxis: Literature and Faith, Truth and Beauty
In my blog, Hieropraxis, I explore the intersection of literature and faith, and of reason and imagination.
“Hieropraxis” combines the words “hieros” (meaning “sacred” in Greek) and “praxis” (meaning “practice” or “action”). Hieropraxis is thus a place to explore the practice of living a holy life, a life lived in the light of the knowledge of God revealed to us in the person of Jesus Christ. A new word formed from two ancient ones, Hieropraxis reminds us that the faith once delivered to the saints can indeed be lived out, in all its richness and truth, in the present day.
Statement of Faith
I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible;
And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, begotten of his Father before all worlds, God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God, begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father; by whom all things were made; who for us men and for our salvation came down from heaven, and was incarnate by the Holy Ghost of the Virgin Mary, and was made man; and was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate; he suffered and was buried; and the third day he rose again according to the Scriptures, and ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of the Father; and he shall come again, with glory, to judge both the quick and the dead; whose kingdom shall have no end.
And I believe in the Holy Ghost, the Lord and Giver of Life, who proceedeth from the Father and the Son; who with the Father and the Son together is worshiped and glorified; who spake by the prophets. And I believe one holy Catholic and Apostolic Church; I acknowledge one Baptism for the remission of sins; and I look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen.
I lecture regularly on topics related to literature and Christian faith, apologetics, and spiritual growth. I also do workshops for writers (both fiction and non-fiction). The presentation topics listed below are examples of lectures that can be adapted as needed for a particular venue, or I can create a new talk to meet the needs of a given audience.
- Imagination and Reality
- Literature as a Mode of Apologetics
- Why Poetry Matters
- Praying the Way of the Cross
- Family-Friendly Fantasy? Morality in Harry Potter and Twilight
- Why We Can Trust the Bible
- Praying the Psalms
- The Spiritual Journey in Literature
- C.S. Lewis and the Art of Wordsmithing
- Available on YouTube: “The Role of Imagination in the Life of Faith.” Biola University Undergraduate Chapel, La Mirada, CA. Oct. 12, 2011
- “Imagination in Service of Truth: Literature as a Mode of Apologetics.” Breakout session at the Evangelical Philosophical Society Apologetics Conference, San Francisco, CA, Nov. 17-19, 2011.
- “Literature and Faith: the Poetry of John Donne.” Evening lecture for the Torrey Honors Program, Biola University, La Mirada, CA. Nov. 3, 2011.
- “C.S. Lewis and the Art of Wordsmithing.” C.S. Lewis Foundation Southwest Regional Retreat and Writers Workshop. Camp Allen, Texas. Oct. 27-30, 2011.
- “The Art of Wordsmithing.” Online Christian Writers Workshop. Athanatos Christian Ministries. Aug. 18, 2011.
- “The Pain and Grace of Longing.” Devotion for morning worship, delivered at the C.S. Lewis Foundation Vacation with a Purpose at the future C.S. Lewis College site, June 14, 2011.
- “Why Poetry Matters.” Evening lecture at the C.S. Lewis Foundation Vacation with a Purpose at the future C.S. Lewis College site, June 9, 2011.
- “A Former Atheist’s Journey to Faith” Keynote speaker at the Immersion Apologetics Conference, New Berlin, WI. April 16, 2011.
- “Literary Apologetics 101”: Breakout session at the Immersion Apologetics Conference, New Berlin, WI. April 16, 2011.
- “Literature and Faith: the Poetry of George Herbert.” Guest lecturer, Rivendell Sanctuary, Minneapolis, MN. April 14, 2011.
- “Family-Friendly Fantasy? Questions of Morality in Twilight and Harry Potter.” Athanatos Ministries Online Apologetics Conference: April 7, 2011.
- Lifetree Café program “Giving up on God: The Rise of Atheism.” Featured nationwide at Lifetree Cafés in Feb. 2012.
- Guest speaker at William Lane Craig’s Defenders class, Johnson Ferry Baptist Church, Atlanta, GA. November 2010
- “Inside the Mind of a Former Atheist”: Breakout session at the Bayside Apologetics Seminar, Granite Bay, CA. August 2010.
- “What Has Poetry to Do with Apologetics? T. S. Eliot’s ‘The Journey of the Magi’ for the Apologist.” Christian Research Journal. Vol. 34 no. 6. Winter 2011.
- “Truth in Darkness: The Hunger Games as an Unexpected Resource for Apologists.” Christian Research Journal. Vol. 35 no. 2. Spring 2012 (forthcoming)
- “Lovely In Eyes Not His: C.S. Lewis and Gerard Manley Hopkins Addressing the Crisis of Vision.” Juried Academic Roundtable paper presentation, C.S. Lewis Summer Institute 2011: Paradigms of Hope – Transcending Chaos, Transforming Culture. Oxford & Cambridge, England, July 26-Aug. 3, 2011.
- “Literary Apologetics in Action: Encountering the Trinity in John Donne’s Holy Sonnets.” Hope’s Reason: A Journal of Apologetics. 2010.
- “Guides Through the Shadow: George Herbert’s ‘Affliction (4)’” Athanatos Christian Ministries Literary Apologetics Magazine: January 2011.
- “Why Is Atheism Popular and What Can We Do About It?” Rick Warren’s Ministry Newsletter: June 23, 2010
- Not God’s Type: A Rational Academic Finds a Radical Faith. Moody Publishers, May 2010.
- ConversantLife.com Featured Blogger (Now What? column): April 2010 – present
- “The Garden, the Cross, and the Tomb.” Neue Magazine: April 10, 2009
- “In Whose Image Are You Made?” ENTSCHEIDUNG, (the German edition of DECISION, published by the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association): April, 2008.
- “An Atheist’s Unexpected Journey to Faith.” Relevant Magazine: March/April 2007
Dr. Holly Ordway
Hieropraxis: Literature and Faith, Truth and Beauty
Personal page: dr.ordway