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Dr. Gary Pranger

Associate Professor of History and Humanities


Ph.D., University of Illinois
M.S. (American Intellectual and Cultural
History, East Asian History & American-Russian Relations),
Illinois State University

B.S., Illinois State University

Contact Information

phone: 918.495.6060
e-mail: gpranger@oru.edu


Academic Highlights

Dr. Gary Pranger is a White Sox baseball fan who loves deep dish, Chicago-style pizza. He was born as an only child on the south side of Chicago and grew up in Riverdale, Illinois, a south suburb bordering Chicago.

He loves teaching others about history, something that began when his father, a veteran of World War II, told him stories about the war.

He is also passionate about Jesus Christ and has a heart for China. Dr. Pranger says that at an early age, he had a God-encounter similar to Samuel, and since then has always felt God's presence in his life.

In 1973 he attended an Urbana Missions Conference and gave his life and career over to Christ. God put China on his heart during the conference, and he eventually moved to China with his family. While in China, he taught at the Foreign Affairs College and Northeast Normal University in Changchun. God told Dr. Pranger in December 1988 that his time in China was almost up, and in the summer of 1989 he and his family were evacuated out of China due to the Tiananmen Square Massacre.

Dr. Pranger says God had given him a vision of teaching at a Christian university, and in the summer of 1989, Dr. Pranger was hired by ORU He has been teaching in the history department ever since, along with advising and mentoring students.

Dr. Pranger integrates faith and learning within his classes and is an active leader in the early morning prayer meetings in the Fireside Room at ORU. He also is involved in his church through helping in Sunday School, Bible studies and small group sessions. Psalm 73 is one of his favorite passages of Scripture.

"My priorities are being a constant learner, and then teaching and doing research and writing, integrating faith and learning," he says.

He also maintains his interest in athletics by attending as many sporting events as possible to support the Golden Eagles. He also enjoys exercising in the Aerobics Center at ORU.

Curriculum Vita

  • Revivals and Evangelicalism: The American Home Missionary Society in 19th Century America, 1826-1894. To be published soon.
  • Parousia Enumclas, Washington: Pleasant Word, a division of Winepress. 2003. A discipleship novel about the end of history and Christ's second coming.
  • "Revivals and Puritan Spirituality: The American Home Missionary Society in Illinois, 1826-1894" Fides et Historia, vol XXXV, No. 1 (Winter/Spring 2003: pages 91-106).
  • Windows on the World: the Modern World. Vol 2. Boston: Pearson-Penguin, 2002. A Humanities 213-214 reader edited by John Swails and Fleta Buckles.
  • Philip Schaff: Portrait of an Immigrant Theologian. New York: Peter Lang Publishing, Inc., 1997.
  • Moderator for six sessions at the Empowerment 21 Conference, April 2010.
  • Presented paper entitled "American Home Missions, Revivals and 19th Century Evangelicalism" in a colloquium session at the Baylor Symposium on Faith and Culture conference, 2009.
  • Chaired and judged session entitled "Potpourri: Chinese and Japanese Issues" at the annual Phi Alpha Theta and Oklahoma Association of Professional Historians at the University of Central Oklahoma, 2009.
  • Chaired session entitled "Global Expansions of Kingdom in the Early Twentieth Century" at the biennial meeting of the Conference on Faith and History at Bluffton University, Bluffton, Ohio, 2008.
  • Chair, reader and commentator at a session entitled "A Potpourri of British Politics" at the Phi Alpha Theta and Oklahoma Association of Professional Historians conference at Oklahoma Christian University in Oklahoma City, 2008.
  • Presented a paper on 'Philip Schaff: History as Theology and the Problem of Academic Freedom" at the Biennial Conference on Faith and History at Oklahoma Baptist University, 2006.
  • Presented a paper on "Philip Schaff and the Unity of Christianity at the End of the 20th Century" at the Pruit Memorial Symposium on Global Christianity at Baylor University, 2005.
  • Chair, reader and commentator at Phi Alpha Theta Conference on the Enlightenment and American Religious History, 2005.
  • Presented paper on "Philip Schaff: The Mercersburg Theology Revisited" at the Conference on Faith ad History at Hope College in Holland, Michigan, 2004.