Dr. Brown is an internationally recognized biblical scholar, minister, and public intellectual. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Vanderbilt University, a Master of Divinity degree and Doctor of Philosophy degree from University of Chicago. Prior to joining Payne, Dr. Brown served as Associate Dean of Wabash College, and was the Director of the Malcolm X Institute on Black Studies (2011-2013). Dr. Brown has authored four books, What They Don’t Tell You: A Survivor’s Guide to Academic Biblical Studies, Blackening of the Bible: The Aims of African American Biblical Scholarship, The Lord’s Prayer through North African Eyes: A Window into Early Christianity and The Lord’s Prayer and God’s Vision for the World: Finding Your Purpose through Prayer. In addition he was a leading contributor to the New Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible.

A Letter from the President

Glory be to God! Welcome to the website of Payne Theological Seminary. Payne has a long history of empowering women and men for ministry in communities of African descent in the United States and across the globe. As one of the theological institutions of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, the oldest African American denomination in America, we have the privilege of preparing a global ministry for a global church.

Payne Theological Seminary is committed to providing a high quality theological education, in an Africentric fashion, at an affordable cost, to a diverse population, using the best teaching and delivery practices at our disposal. You find evidence of this in our website, our courses, our approach, and most importantly our people. Payne is a community of leaders; whether scholars, students, or staff. We understand that good preparation for ministry is not a luxury but a necessity in our increasingly confusing, conflicted, and complex world.

I invite you to explore what Payne has to offer. I guarantee that you will find a place of deep spirituality and commitment to transforming the world. Even as one of the oldest historically black seminaries, we are still a work in progress. Expect to see new offerings in the very near future. We pride ourselves on meeting the need for ministry in its various forms and places.

Michael Joseph Brown, Ph.D.

Past Presidents

2003–2015 Leah Gaskin Fitchue
1997- 2001 Obery M. Hendricks, Jr.
1989-1997 Louis-Charles Harvey
1985-1988 John E. Brandon
1977-1985 U. A. Hughey
1968-1977 Handley A. Hickey
1968 Alvia A. Shaw
1957-1967 Charles Spivey, Jr.
1951-1957 Rembert E. Stokes
1944-1951 John H. Lewis
1944 D.O. Walker
1937-1944 Charles S. Spivey, Sr.
1902-1937 George F. Woodson
1900-1902 Benjamin T. Tanner
1893-1900 John G. Mitchell
1892-1893 Daniel A. Payne