Walter George Muelder

Walter George Muelder

Walter George Muelder (1907-2004), Professor of Social Ethics and Christian Theology at Boston University and the University of Southern California. He bridged the Bostonian School and the Californian School of American Personalism. Walter Muelder was born on March 1, 1907 in Boody, IL. M. L. King, Jr. was his student. Muelder was Chairman of the organizing committee and first President of the Boston Theological Institute (BTI), a consortium of nine Protestant, Orthodox, and Catholic Schools (1968). He was an ecumenical observer at the Second Vatican Council (1964) and he calls his doctrine “Communitarian Personalism” what recalls ‘communio personarum’ of John Paul II.

His main books are: Toward a Discipline of Social Ethics (Boston, MA 1972) and The Ethical Edge of Christian Theology: Forty Years of Communitarian Personalism (New York, NY 1984).

To Father Gacka,
I am overjoyed that you are continuing to explore and develop the Personalist tradition in Poland and internationally in the Church and university community. Thank you for what you have accomplished and represent. May the Personalism project proper.

Walter G. Muelder,
Boston, August 26th, 2003

Modern personalism has its roots in the idealist tradition since Plato, with major German representatives in Wilhelm Wundt and Hermann Lotze, French thinkers like Charles Renouvier and Emmanuel Mounier, and recent British philosophers like John Macmurray. In America, personalism was formulated by Borden Parker Bowne (Personalism, 1908) and developed by Edgar Sheffield Brightman (Moral Laws, 1933; Philosophy of Religion, 1940), Albert Cornelius Knudson, Ralph Tyler Flewelling, L. Harold DeWolf, Peter Anthony Bertocci, and others.

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