The Legacy of Walter Rauschenbusch

Walter Rauschenbusch

The Legacy of Walter Rauschenbusch | April 9-11, 2018

Walter Rauschenbusch was a Christian theologian and clergyman who is considered the father of the social gospel movement of the first two decades of the 20th century. A seventh-generation minister, he became pastor of the Second German Baptist Church in New York City, on the edge of the crime-ridden Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood. His work to bring about the Kingdom of God by “transforming the life on earth into the harmony of heaven” has inspired countless clergy and social reformers, including Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Desmond Tutu, and many others.

Conference Details

Mercer University’s Center for Theology and Public Life and McAfee School of Theology, in partnership with the Acadia Centre for Baptist and Anabaptist Studies (ACBAS) and the American Baptist Historical Society (ABHS), announce the program details for an international scholarly conference in recognition of the centenary of Professor Walter Rauschenbusch’s death.

“The Legacy of Walter Rauschenbusch” will take place April 9-11, 2018, on the University’s Cecil B. Day Graduate and Professional Campus in Atlanta. This same campus hosts the American Baptist Historical Society, a premier religious historical society, which houses the most extensive collection of Rauschenbusch family papers, and will host a reception and display on the first night of the conference.

The conference will begin with dinner on Monday, April 9, and end at 3:00 pm on Wednesday, April 11.

Confirmed speakers include: Bill Brackney (Acadia University), Heath Carter (Valparaiso University), Wendy Deichmann (United Theological Seminary), Ralf Dziewas (Theological Seminary, Elstal), Gary Dorrien (Union Seminary, NY), Christopher Evans (Boston University), Dominik Gauthier (University of Oldenburg), David Gushee (Mercer University), Roger Prentice (Acadia University, Andrea Strubind (University of Oldenburg), and Darryl Trimiew (past president, Society of Christian Ethics).

In conjunction with the conference, Mercer University Press plans to release the first two volumes of a new three-volume critical edition of The Works of Walter Rauschenbusch, co-edited and with extensive historical, theological, and ethical introductions by Bill Brackney and David Gushee. A follow-up volume of conference papers will also be edited by Drs. Brackney and Gushee. 

Read the full press release here.


The schedule for the conference can be downloaded here.


Download the registration form by clicking here.  Follow the instructions on the form for submitting registration.  Registration is free for all students.


If making a payment via check, follow the instructions on the registration form.

If making a payment with a credit card:

  1. Indicate on the registration form you will be making your payment via debit/credit card.
  2. Click here to go to the payment page on the ABHS website.
  3. Enter your contact information.
  4. Enter the dollar amount of your registration cost in the "Rauschenbusch Conference Registration" category (ex. $95 for one person registering before January 1, 2018).
  5. Select "one time donation" under frequency. 
  6. Under payment information, select "Debit/Credit Card" and enter your card information.
  7. Click the box authorizing American Baptist Churches to collect the registration cost from your card.
  8. Click "submit".

Early-bird Registration has been set for $95 (if you register before January 1st), with conference fees increasing by tiers until registration closes March 25th.

If you have problems, please contact Mercer University’s Edwina Cowgill ( for full conference program and registration form.