Welcome to the website of the Mercersburg Research Fellowship! Although the site is still under construction, we hope to provide here the web’s most comprehensive collection of resources related to the study of the Mercersburg Theology, and to introduce the important and ongoing work of the Project–the Mercersburg Theology Study Series.
The Mercersburg Theology was a unique moment in American religious history–its greatest flowering of European currents of thought such as Romanticism and Idealism, and one of the most creative developments of the Reformed theological tradition. Deeply controversial in its own time, it has remained sadly unknown since, though it has continued to inspire generations of churchmen and scholars who have stumbled upon its powerful insights. As a response to the sectarian, revivalist, and low-church tendencies of American religion, as an attempt to grapple with modern theological developments from within a confessional Reformed tradition, as a recovery of Reformational and patristic thought after their erosion by post-Reformation scholasticism, the Mercersburg Theology offers valuable resources for theologians and pastors and merits careful attention by historians. It is high time that the many churches and academic disciplines with so much to learn from Mercersburg begin to recover its rich resources.
Since many of the original writings of the Mercersburg theologians (chief among them John Williamson Nevin and Philip Schaff) remain difficult to access, and scholarship on them over the past century has been so scattered, it is no wonder that such a recovery has been slow, only beginning to gain steam in the last two decades. It is our goal to finally overcome these obstacles: first, by offering readable critical editions of the key Mercersburg writings in the Mercersburg Theology Study Series; second, by using this website as a platform to bring together resources for Mercersburg scholarship and existing Mercersburg scholars.
Here, once the site is complete, you will find information about and updates on the Mercersburg Theology Study Series, a bibliography of Mercersburg primary sources (with links to material currently online), a bibliography of Mercersburg secondary sources, and an index of scholars who were or are involved in Mercersburg research.