Abrahamsen's picture

Real name: 

Primary Discipline

Primary Discipline: 

  • HumanitiesTheologyBiblical studies

Further Specification: 

New Testament and Early Christian Origins


I completed masters and doctoral studies in New Testament and Early Christian Origins at Harvard Divinity School and have remained active in my fields for nearly four decades. I worked as an academic administrator, mainly as a registrar, at a number of colleges in Massachusetts and Vermont. I reluctantly retired in late 2017 after my job was eliminated suddenly in 2013 and I was unsuccessful landing a new position. For three years, I conducted research on the survival of the soul after death and self-published my book, Paranormal, in 2015. In October 2015, I launched a website, WisdomWordsPPF, and have been posting evidence-based blogs twice a month in three areas: my scholarly research on women in antiquity, New Testament, and early church history; social justice issues from a progressive, feminist perspective; and insights from Paranormal. I am now giving lectures and leading discussions, retreats and workshops at retirement communities, churches, colleges, libraries, conference centers and other venues, and I volunteer for Estey Organ Museum in Brattleboro, Vermont; the New England Historic Genealogical Society, Boston, Mass.; and Senior Solutions, Springfield, Vermont. I sing in the Brattleboro Concert Choir and the choir of St. Michael's Episcopal Church, Brattleboro.

Current research areas: 

For blog posts: social justice issues, especially how other Western democracies solve problems that we in the US seem unable to solve.
For lectures and discussions: pagan, Jewish and Christian women in antiquity; archaeological observations from Pauline cities.
For retreats: the worship and legacy of Mary, mother of Jesus.

Recent scholarly activity: 

“Archaeological Revelations from the Ancient Cities of Philippi and Corinth,” presentation, Carleton-Willard Village, November 29, 2022

“Pagan, Jewish and Christian Women in the Roman Empire,” presentation, Greenfield Community College Senior Symposia program, October 13, 2022

Recent publications: 

“Mary, Isis, and the Goddesses of the Via Egnatia,” Bible History Daily blog, Biblical Archaeology Society, January 25, 2023, https://www.biblicalarchaeology.org/daily/biblical-sites-places/mary-isi...
Review, Mary Ann Beavis and Ally Kateusz, eds., Rediscovering the Marys: Maria, Mariamne, Miriam (London and New York: T&T Clark, 2020), in Anglican and Episcopal History, Vol. 92, No. 1 (March 2023) 133-35.
Review, Paula Fredriksen, When Christians were Jews: The First Generation (Cornwall, Great Britain: TJ International Ltd., 2018), in Anglican and Episcopal History, Vol. 91, No. 3 (September 2022) 384-86.

Forthcoming research: 

Review, Hans Boersma, Five Things Theologians Wish Biblical Scholars Knew (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2021), in Anglican and Episcopal History, submitted
Review, Susan E. Hylen, Finding Phoebe: What New Testament Women Were Really Like (Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 2023), in Anglican and Episcopal History, submitted
Review, Amy Peeler, Women and the Gender of God (Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 2022), in Anglican and Episcopal History, in progress

Other activities: 

Invited endorsement, Thomas G. Plante and Gary E. Schwartz, editors, Human Interaction with the Divine, the Sacred, and the Deceased: Psychological, Scientific, and Theological Perspectives, Routledge, 2022.
Co-President, Board of Directors, Christ Church Guilford Society, Inc.
Museum Host Coordinator, Estey Organ Museum, Brattleboro, Vermont

Contact us

National Coalition of Independent Scholars