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Mickler, Michael

Distinguished Professor of Historical Studies

Dr. Michael Mickler is a church historian whose teaching and research interests include the history of Christianity, the American religious experience, the Unification movement, and interreligious peace-building. He sees his task as one of balancing faith with scholarly objectivity, cross-disciplinary perspectives, and a commitment to dialogue with representatives of diverse Christian traditions and world faiths.

Dr. Mickler’s books and numerous articles on the Unification Movement are recognized by the wider academic community and cited at length in major scholarly monographs. His 40 Years in America: An Intimate History of the Unification Movement, 1959-99 is the definitive account of the movement’s emergence and development in the United States. Dr. Mickler is Director of the Sunhak Institute of History which documents Family Federation activities in the United States.

Since joining the faculty in 1989, Dr. Mickler has served in a variety of administrative positions, including those of Academic Dean (1995-2000) and Vice-President (2000-2009, 2014-2022). He is an editorial board member of the Journal of Unification Studies. Dr. Mickler is Distinguished Professor of Historical Studies.

    • Ph.D. Graduate Theological Union
    • M.A. Graduate Theological Union
    • Dipl. R.E. Unification Theological Seminary
  • Books:

    • The Unification Church Movement (Cambridge University Press, 2022)
    • Footprints of True Parents’ Providence: The United States of America (2013)
    • 40 Years in America: An Intimate History of the Unification Movement, 1959-1999 (2000)
    • A History of the Unification Church in America, 1959-74 (1993)
    • The Unification Church in America: A Bibliography and Research Guide (1987)


    • “No Stranger to Litigation: Court Cases Involving the Unification Church/Family Federation in the United States.” In James T. Richardson and Eileen Barker, eds. How Minority Religions React to the Law: Case Studies and Theoretical Applications. Routledge. 2021
    • “Gender Politics in the Post-Sun Myung Moon Unification Movement.” Pp. 203-25 in The Life and Legacy of Sun Myung Moon and the Unification Movements in Scholarly Perspective. Acta Comparanda, Subsidia VI. Antwerp, Belgium: Faculty of Comparative Religion and Humanism (FVG), 2018.
    • “The Post-Sun Myung Moon Unification Church.” Pp. 47-63 in Eileen Barker, ed.  Revisionism and Diversification in New Religious Movements. Farnham, UK: Ashgate, 2013
    • “The Unification Church/Movement in the United States.” Pp., 158-84 in Eugene V. Gallagher and W. Michael Ashcraft, eds. Introduction to New and Alternative Religions in America. Vol. 4. Westport, CN: Greenwood, 2006.
    • “The Anti-Cult Movement in Japan.” Pp. 255-71 in Anson Shupe and David Bromley, eds. Anti-Cult Movements in Cross-Cultural Perspectives. Garland, 1994.
    • “When the Prophet Is Yet Living.” Pp. 183-94 in The Post-Charismatic Fate of New Religious Movements. Edited by Timothy Miller. SUNY, 1991.
    • “Future Prospects of the Unification Church.” Pp. 175-86 in Phillip Hammond and David Bromley, eds. The Future of New Religious Movements. Mercer, 1987.
    • journal of Unification Studies (complete listing of articles)
    • Applied Unificationism Blog (complete listing of articles)
    • LTR 5131 History of Christianity I

    • LTR 5132 History of Christianity II

    • LTR 5151 History of the Unification Movement

    • LTR 5622 Life and Thought of Sun Myung Moon and Hak Ja Han Moon

  • Dr. Mickler is the primary historian of the Unification movement in America.