Ryan Marr

Ryan Marr
Ryan Marr, PhD, MDiv
Adjunct Faculty

Courses Regularly Taught

  • Philosophy
  • Servant Leadership
  • Bioethics

Year Started at Mercy College 2014


  • B.A. John Brown University (2002)
  • M.Div. Duke Divinity School (2006)
  • Ph.D. Saint Louis University (2015)

Research Interests and Professional Projects

My primary areas of research interest are ecclesiology, ecumenism, and nineteenth century Catholic theology—principally, the work of John Henry Newman. My doctoral dissertation examined the development of Newman’s ecclesiological perspective during the latter half of his life, and thus far my publications have primarily been in the field of Newman studies. While I continue to engage in research related to Newman's work, I am also deeply interested in the history of the Second Vatican Council, as well as the reception of the conciliar documents, especially on the part of the laity.

Recent Publications/Presentations

  • “Newman’s Mariology: A Model for a Spirituality of Reception.” In Contemporary Perspectives on John Henry Newman's Spirituality: A Spiritual Theology for the 21st Century. Edited by John Connolly and Brian Hughes. Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press, 2014.
  • “Dinah Morris as Second Eve.” LOGOS: A Journal of Catholic Thought and Culture (Summer 2014).
  • “Newman and Infallibility.” In The Oxford Handbook of John Henry Newman. Edited by Fred Aquino and Benjamin King. New York: Oxford University Press, forthcoming 2017.

Professional Memberships

  • College Theology Society
  • Newman Association of America

Personal History

I was born and raised in Omaha, Nebraska, and have four siblings (two older sisters, a twin brother, and a younger brother). After graduating from high school, I attended John Brown University in Arkansas, and then Duke Divinity School in North Carolina. Throughout my moves around the country, I have remained an avid Nebraska Husker fan.

I served as a chaplain at the Durham VA Medical Center for a year, before completing my doctoral studies in historical theology at Saint Louis University. Last year, I moved with my family to Des Moines to take the job here at Mercy College. My wife, Rachel, and I have been married for fourteen-and-a-half years and have four daughters and a son. In my free time, I enjoy spending time with my wife, hosting tea parties for my daughters, watching football, playing basketball, and reading novels.

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