President and Professor of Modern and American Church History, Brite Divinity School, Texas Christian University

Dr. D. Newell Williams


“The Liberating Arts and Sciences: Disciples of Christ and Higher Education”

Thursday, October 25, 2012

  • 10:30 a.m. Meet the Author and Book Signing
  • 11:00 a.m. Lecture

Dorsey Chapel
Columbia College Campus

Dr. D. Newell Williams

About Dr. D. Newell Williams

D. Newell Williams has been President and Professor of Modern and American Church History of Brite Divinity School at Texas Christian University since 2003.

He is the author of Barton Stone: A Spiritual Biography, (St. Louis, Mo. Chalice Press, 2000) and Ministry Among Disciples: Past, Present, and Future, (St. Louis, Mo. Published for Council on Christian Unity by Christian Board of Publication, 1985). He is editor of A Case Study of Mainstream Protestantism: The Disciples’ Relation to American Culture, 1880-1989, (Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1991), which resulted from a Lilly Endowment funded study directed by Dr. Williams involving over thirty historians, theologians, and sociologists. He co-edited with Douglas A. Foster, Paul M. Blowers and Anthony L. Dunnavant, The Encyclopedia of the Stone-Campbell Movement (William B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 2004). He has contributed chapters to books and articles including, “Christianity in Twentieth Century America: Implications for the Twenty-First Century” (Encounter 63:3, Summer 2002, 247-261), “From Trusting Congress to Renouncing Human Governments: The Millennial Odyssey of Barton W. Stone” (Discipliana 61:3, Fall 2001, 67-81), “Pursuit of Justice: The Antislavery Pilgrimage of Barton W. Stone” (Encounter 62:1, Winter 2001, 1-23), “Bringing a Vision to Life: Walter Scott and the Restored Church," (in Walter Scott: A Nineteenth Century Evangelical, ed. Mark G. Toulouse, St. Louis: Chalice Press, 1999, 123-133), “Disciples Biblical Interpretation and the Fugitive Slave Law: Ovid Butler Vs. Alexander Campbell" (Encounter 59:1-2, Winter/Spring 1998, 3-22), “Overcoming a Liberal-Conservative Divide: The Commission on Restudy of the Disciples of Christ," (in Christian Faith Seeking Historical Understanding: Essays in Honor of H. Jack Forstman, ed. James O. Duke and Anthony L. Dunnavant, Macon: Mercer University Press, 1997, 246-276), "Disciples-Related Colleges and the Culture of Disbelief," Encounter 56:1 (Winter 1995), 19-26, "Elders in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)," (in The Ministry of Elders in the Reformed Church, ed. Lukas Vischer, Berne: Evangelische Arbeitsstelle Oekumene Schweiz, 1992, 144-161), "Elders as Assistant Ministers: A Call for Restructure of the Ministry in Congregations of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)," (Encounter 48:1 Winter 1987, 93-103), and "Disciples Piety: A Historical Review with Implications for Spiritual Formation," Encounter 47:1 Winter 1986, 1-25).

Dr. Williams is an Ordained Minister of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ); a member of the American Academy of Religion, the American Society of Church History, the Association of Disciples for Theological Discussion, and the Stone-Campbell Dialogue. He holds a Ph.D. (1979) and M.A. (1975) from Vanderbilt University and a B.A. from University of Tulsa (1971).

He is married to the Rev. Sue McDougal, and they are the parents of three children, Mac, Coert and Errett. Dr. Williams served Brite as Assistant Professor of Church History and as Assistant Dean (1978-1983) and later Associate Dean (1983-1984). From 1984 – 2003 he taught at Christian Theological Seminary, where he served as Vice President and Dean from 1992 – 1998.

Dr. Williams served a two-year term as Moderator of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) from 2007 to 2009. He is currently the Theological Education Representative to the General Committee on Ministry.

The Schiffman Lecture in Religious Studies was created to educate students, faculty, staff and the community about religion’s influence on society in the Uniteds States and globally. Read more about the Schiffman Lecture series.

Previous lectures in Religious Studies
2011 Stephen L. Carter, Acclaimed Novelist, Yale Law Professor, and Leading Intellectual in Law, Religion, and Culture
2010 Dr. James H. Austin, Neurologist, Researcher, and Zen Practitioner
2009 Robert Wright, Schwartz Senior Fellow, New America Foundation
2009 Dr. Kenneth W. Stein, director, Institute for the Study of Modern Israel of Emory University
2008 Susan Jacoby, author of The New York Times best seller, The Age of American Unreason
2007 Dr. Stephen J. Patterson, professor of New Testament at Eden Theological Seminary, St. Louis
2006 Rev. Martin Marty, pastor, author and Fairfax M. Cone Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus at the University of Chicago Divinity School
2005 Ellen O’Grady, artist and social activist
2004 Rev. John Yonker of First Christian Church and Rabbi Yossi Feintuch of Congregation Beth Shalom of Columbia, Mo.
2003 Dr. Shakir Hoomodi, spokesperson for the Islamic Center of Central Missouri
2002 Dr. Linda Lindsey, professor of sociology and coordinator of women’s studies, Maryville University of St. Louis.
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