New Course on Religion and the Presidency


From Wesley Theological Seminary

Wesley Theological Seminary to offer new course: “Religion and the American Presidency”

WASHINGTON (July 21, 2016) - Wesley Theological Seminary today announced a new hybrid course to be taught by Mike McCurry focusing on how religion and faith shaped our U.S. presidents.

“Religion and the American Presidency” will examine our country's chief executives and how they carried out their own religious commitments in their campaigns and presidencies. The course will look directly at the 2016 national campaign and examine the role faith plays in the national political discourse.

“We are a country that separates church and state as a matter of law but it is hard to disentangle the religious faith of our presidents from how they governed and campaigned for office,” said McCurry, a former White House press secretary and Distinguished Professor of Public Theology at Wesley Seminary.

The course will offer a mix of in person meetings, participation in Skype conferences, and will highlight presentations the major candidates for president make during the presidential debates this fall. Students will have an option to attend, at their own expense, the second presidential debate this fall on October 9th in St. Louis.

Registration for the fall course is limited and expected to fill quickly. Wesley students can register at My Wesley. Non-degree applicants and alumni can register here for fall 2016 courses.


The Center for Public Theology (CPT) at Wesley draws together courses, programs and events which examine ways that faith traditions impact policy and politics, especially in the nation’s capital. It is part of Wesley Seminary’s Institute for Community Engagement (ICE) which helps churches engage their communities with the vision of “a transforming church that promotes communities where all people are cherished and flourish.” The Center for Public Theology is in its startup phase, funded with grants from the Henry Luce III Foundation and the Arthur Vining Davis Foundation.

Centered in the Christian tradition, Wesley Theological Seminary, through its Institute for Community Engagement (ICE), equips exemplary teachers, preachers and leaders to be prophetic voices in the church and the world. Wesley Theological Seminary is located in Washington, DC with a main campus in upper Northwest adjacent to American University and a downtown location at 9th and Massachusetts Ave NW where ICE is housed.