Dr. J. Steven O’Malley

John T. Seamands Professor of Methodist Holiness History

Dr. J. Steven O’Malley is the John T. Seamands Professor of Methodist Holiness History. He is also the director of the Center for the Study of World Christian Revitalization Movements at Asbury Theological Seminary, which received a research grant in 2007 from the Henry Luce Foundation.

He received a B.A. from the University of Indianapolis, 1964; a B.D. from Yale University Divinity School, 1967; and a Ph.D. from Drew University, 1970.

Dr. O’Malley has pastoral experience in Connecticut, South Dakota, Austria and Kentucky. He has been a lecturer and guest speaker at United Methodist seminaries and universities and was the opening convocation preacher at Garrett Evangelical Seminary in 2007. In 1999, he was also the Bell Visiting Professor in the Graduate School, Drew University. From 1977 to 1983, he served as the first professor of church history at the School of Theology at Oral Roberts University, where in 1982 he was named outstanding faculty member. In 2007, he received the distinguished scholar award from United Theological Seminary.

Dr. O’Malley has written, edited and translated numerous books, studies and articles. His latest book is Forthcoming: Pentecost and the New Humanity (2009, Scarecrow). This past year he has led a variety of devotionals, as well as written several articles.

Written Works

  • Spring and Summer 2018, completed sabbatical project on The Origin of the Wesleyan Theological Vision for Christian Globalization and the Pursuit of Pentecost in Early Pietist Revivalism (includes translation of first Pentecost addresses presented in the context of revival).
  • June 2018: Completed chapter on “Theology of the Cross in Luther and its Reconfiguration in the Pietist and Wesleyan Awakenings,” for volume edited by Doug Matthews, The Cross and the Kingdom (Wipf and Stock, publication pending).
  • Fall 2017: article published on “Pietism and Wesleyanism” in Wesleyan Theological Journal
  • “When Leadership Failed: Asbury’s Dealings with Otterbein, Boehm and Albright,” in Christian History (December 2017).
  • “The Pietist Link to Wesley’s Deathbed Confession,” in Wesleyan Theological Journal (summer 2017).


  • Gave address July 10, 2018– United Theological Seminary for the 50th anniversary celebration of the United Methodist Church, sponsored by the United Methodist Historical Society, the United Methodist Commission on Archives and History, the North Central Jurisdiction Historical Commission, and the  EUB History Center.
  • Participant in round table forum on “Current Trends in Wesleyan Scholarship,” presented at the annual meeting of the Wesleyan Theological Society, meeting at Lee University, Cleveland, TN, March 4, 2018.
  • October 31, 2017: Delivered plenary address for Reformation500 Celebration, at Estes Chapel, Asbury Theological Seminary, on “Was Martin Luther the First Modern Man”.
  • May, 2017: Led devotions for Plenary Faculty Meetings, Asbury Theological Seminary.
  • March 2, 2017: Presented plenary lecture for the Wesleyan Theological Society, meeting at Asbury Theological Seminary, on “Pietism and Wesleyanism: Setting the Stage for a theological Discussion”.
  • March 2, 2017: Awarded the Distinguished Scholar Award by the Wesleyan Theological Society at its annual meeting at Asbury Theological Seminary.
  • Spring and Summer 2017: Liturgist and delivered homilies in the Asbury Seminary eucharist chapel.
  • Summer 2017 and Summer 2018 (August 5 and 12): Taught for Bill Arnold in his Trailblazers Sunday School Class at First United Methodist Church, Lexington, Ky.
  • Fall and Spring 2017: Led devotions for Meetings of School of Theology and Formation, Asbury Theological Seminary, spring 2017, led service of eucharist, Offerings UM Church, Lexington.

He and his wife, Angie, have two daughters.

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