Barbara Brown Taylor to Deliver 2019 William L. Self Preaching Lectures at McAfee School of Theology

Barbara Brown Taylor

ATLANTA – New York Times best-selling author, teacher and Episcopal priest Barbara Brown Taylor will deliver the 2019 William L. Self Preaching Lectures on Feb. 11-12 at Mercer University’s McAfee School of Theology.

Taylor will present a series of three lectures on the theme “How My Mind Has Changed About Preaching” on Monday, Feb. 11, at 4 p.m. and 7 p.m., and Tuesday, Feb. 12, at 11 a.m., in Cecil B. Day Hall on the University’s Atlanta campus.

Taylor, who currently serves on Mercer’s Board of Trustees, is working on her 14th book, Holy Envy, which will be published by HarperOne in April.

She has served on the faculties of Piedmont College, Columbia Theological Seminary, Candler School of Theology at Emory University and McAfee School of Theology, as well as the Certificate in Theological Studies program at Arrendale State Prison for Women in Alto, Georgia.

Taylor has won numerous awards, including being named Georgia Woman of the Year in 2015, included on TIME magazine’s annual list of Most Influential People in 2014, and presented The President’s Medal by the Chautauqua Institution in New York in 2016. Her work has been translated into five languages.

She earned her Bachelor of Arts in religion from Emory University in 1973 and her Master of Divinity from Yale Divinity School in 1976.

“Having Barbara Brown Taylor for this year’s lecture series is a wonderful tribute to the legacy of Dr. Self, another great preacher of repute,” said Dr. Greg DeLoach, interim dean of McAfee School of Theology. “Her words of proclamation are often poetic, at times provocative, and nearly always persuasive. We are delighted and honored to host Taylor for this noteworthy series.”

The William L. Self Lectureship was established in order to promote the practice of faithful and effective preaching of the gospel of Jesus Christ. The lectures seek to instill in students and pastors a passion for better preaching by providing worthy models and by offering seasoned instruction and encouragement.

The lecture series is named in honor of the late Dr. William L. Self, a former Mercer trustee who distinguished himself with a national reputation as a gifted preacher, pastor, author, lecturer, motivational speaker and innovator in church growth.

Dr. Self achieved considerable acclaim by leading Wieuca Road Baptist Church in Atlanta to a place of prominence in Georgia and the nation. Then, as pastor of Johns Creek Baptist Church in Alpharetta, his leadership and influence brought that church to the vanguard of fast-growing churches.

The event is free to all seminary students in Atlanta, but registration is required to attend. There is a $60 fee for non-seminary students to attend the lectures. A dinner will take place in the Trustees Dining Room between the first two lectures, and dinner reservations are required at an additional cost of $25 per person.

For more information, or to register, contact Diane Frazier at (678) 547-6470 or

About the School of Theology

The Mercer University School of Theology, named for James and Carolyn McAfee, who provided the founding gift for the School, forms Christian leaders whose practice and scholarship, empowered by their passion for God and neighbor, change lives and transform communities. The School accomplishes this mission by: 1) integrating spirituality with service through: practicing spiritual disciplines that nurture us for Christian service; embracing ethnic, gender and theological diversity to enhance our spiritual growth and moral formation; creating opportunities to learn in community, experience transformation and risk action; 2) integrating theological inquiry with prophetic vision through interpreting the story of the Christian faith through sacred scriptures and traditions; connecting faith to global contexts in ways that engage personal, communal and political realities; critiquing the structures of our society from an informed prophetic voice; 3) integrating worship with witness through celebrating God’s presence in worship as the source of the Church’s call to community and global transformation; reading cultural contexts to create holistic strategies for ministry; proclaiming the love of God in Jesus Christ through dialogue and in partnership with others. For more information, visit