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Theodore Brelsford

Affiliate Associate Professor of Religion and Education


PhD, Emory University, 1999
MDiv, Princeton Theological Seminary, 1988
BA, Slippery Rock State University, 1983


Prior to taking on the role of affiliate associate professor of religion and education, Dr. Theodore Brelsford was a full-time member of the Candler faculty for 10 years, first as a visiting professor, and later as the director of the Religious Education program from 2001-2008. Dedicated to both the church and the academy, he has served in school chaplaincy positions, youth ministry, and pastoral ministry.

Brelsford’s research interests include religious education, epistemology and imagination, and he is currently working on a book, Believing in Myth, Living in Mystery: The Mystery, Myth, and Reality of Christian Faith.


Co-editor, Contextualizing Theological Education: Integrating Ecclesial and Academic Practices in Teaching and Learning. Pilgrim Press, 2008


“Religious Imagination as Problem,” Religious Education, vol. 110, issue 3, Taylor & Francis, June 19, 2015

“Believing Political Lies Reveals Lack of Faith,” Buffalo News, The Buffalo News, October 28, 2012

“Educating For Formative Participation in Communities of Faith,” Religious Education, vol. 96, issue 3, Taylor & Francis, January 19, 2011

“In Memoriam: Terence Copley (1947-2011),” Religious Education, vol. 106, issue 5, Taylor & Francis, November 01, 2011

“An Organic Curriculum for the Small Church,” Lifelong Faith, vol. 2, no. 4, Lifelong Faith Associates, November 01, 2008

“A Mythical Realist Orientation for Religious Education: Theological and Pedagogical Implications of the Mythical Nature of Religious Story,” Religious Education, vol. 102, issue 3, Taylor & Francis, July 01, 2007

“Still Stuck in (Sunday) School?” Leader in Christian Education Ministry, Spring 2006, Cokesbury, March 01, 2006

“Religious Education Beyond the Schooling Model,” Religious Education, vol. 100, issue 4, Taylor & Francis, November 01, 2005

“Lessons for Religious Education from Cognitive Science of Religion,” Religious Education, vol. 100, issue 2, Taylor & Francis, January 01, 2005

“Promoting Open and Committed Christian Faith,” Research and Travel Grant, Candler School of Theology

“Interviews with Open and Committed Believers,” Research Grant, Candler School of Theology

“Imaginative Faith in Fragmented Times,” Research and Writing Grant, Wabash Center for Teaching and Learning in Theology and Religion

“Teaching and Learning Beyond Boundaries: Faith Communities and American Schools as Character Education Partners,” Conference Grant, The Sherman Fund

“Graduate Division of Religion Graduate Student Teaching Mentors Project,” (co-authored with Gary Laderman), Three-year Development Grant, Wabash Center for Teaching and Learning in Theology and Religion

Graduate Fellowship, Emory University, 1991-1995

Fellowship in Practical Theology, Princeton Theological Seminary

Religious Education as Formation and Transformation

The Art of Teaching, Creativity and Pedagogy

Becoming a Reflective Practitioner