"Let us not grow weary in doing what is right, for we will reap at harvest-time, if we will not give up." Galatians 6:9

Ronald D. Burris, Associate Professor of Church History

Ronald D. Burris

Associate Professor of Church History

Contact Ronald D. Burris

ronaldburris@earthlink.net; (510) 841-1905 X231

B.A., University of California, Davis CA
M.A., Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena CA
Ph.D., Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley CA


As a scholar and a pastor of a modest Church in Richmond California, I have a deep appreciation for the way in which students are prepared for ministry at the American Baptist Seminary of the West. Here, at ABSW we are intentional in equipping students for ministry in the local church. Throughout our program, students are challenged to think critically about what they are learning as it relates to “doing and understanding ministry.” As a result, I believe the serious student can leave ABSW with not only a solid theological education, but also life long tools for ministry.


As Professor of Church History, I like to challenge students to appreciate the Church's past accomplishments but to also learn from our many mistakes in the areas of injustice and intolerance.


Current Scholarly Interests: The major African Fathers, such as Tertullian, Cyprian and St. Augustine; the theology and history of the Donatist Church in North Africa; the history and theology of the first four ecumenical councils; and the history and theology of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the Civil Rights Movement as it relates to the theology of justice and love.


Dr. Burris serves on the core doctoral faculty of the GTU, History Area.



Where Is the Church? Martrydom, Persecution, and Baptism in North Africa from the Second to the Fifth Century. Resource Publications, 2012.