School of Music


Doctor of Philosophy


R. Scott Connell


racial reconciliation, antebellum worship, multiracial worship, enslaved worship, Cane Ridge Revival, Barton W. Stone


Liturgy and Worship


It has been fifty-eight years since the Civil Rights Act of 1964 outlawed segregation in public places in the United States of America. Yet, in the twenty-first century, a racial divide still exists in the American church. The American church has not been able to mend the rift that occurred within the antebellum biracial church after the end of slavery. This study examines the actions of a biracial antebellum church that was inspired by its antislavery leaders and the Second Great Awakening to join social activism with worship to foster Christian unity and racial reconciliation. An examination of autobiographies, journals, church records, denominational doctrines, court records, and recorded actions of Cane Ridge Christian Church confirm the impact Barton Warren Stone and the 1801 Cane Ridge Revival had on the Cane Ridge congregation. The central question that guided this study was, “What perspectives and practices of the reconciliation work performed by the Christian Church of Cane Ridge can today’s church use to construct a model for multiracial worship and racial reconciliation?” This study offers the themes found in the worship of Cane Ridge Christian Church as an optional foundation for a worship model that the church can use today to incite racial unity amidst a culturally and racially diverse church.

Available for download on Friday, May 24, 2024