Heyward, Carter Papers

Span Dates: 1967-1998
Bulk Dates:
Volume: 22 linear ft.


The Carter Heyward Papers date from the 1950s to 2000 and measure 24 linear feet. The papers of this noted theologian and Episcopalian priest are located in the Archives of Women in Theological Scholarship (AWTS) at the Union Theological Seminary (New York, NY). A finding aid will soon be available on-line.

Hist/Bio Note

Episcopal priest, professor, theologian, activist, and writer. A pioneer in the areas of feminist liberation theology and the theology of sexuality. Heyward was born August 22, 1945 and raised in North Carolina. She received an undergraduate degree from Randolph-Macon Women’s College in Lynchburg, Virginia in 1967. She attended Union Theological Seminary in New York one year, but moved back to Charlotte in 1968 to work in her home parish, St. Martin’s Church, for the next year and a half as a lay assistant. In 1971 Heyward returned to New York and earned a Master of Arts in the Comparative Study of Religion from Columbia University (1971) and a Master of Divinity at Union Theological Seminary (1973). Before earning a Ph.D. in Systematic Theology from Union (1980), Heyward, was ordained a priest on July 29, 1974, along with ten other women. The ceremony violated church canons and was not officially sanctioned by the church until 1976. In January 1975, Heyward and fellow priest, Suzanne Hiatt were hired at Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, Massachusetts. As a professor, Heyward’s primary teaching concentrated on 19th century Anglican theology, feminist liberation theology and theology of sexuality. She transformed consciousness, proclaimed the possibilities for women to be priests, for lesbians to be theological, and made way for new approaches to connecting the divine to the erotic, justice, activism. Heyward is the author of eleven books.

Finding Aid

A finding aid is available at AWTS at the Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary. An online finding aid will be available soon. Questions can be directed to AWTS.


The collection is held at the Archives of Women in Theological Scholarship at Burke Library at the Union Theological Seminary (New York).


Episcopal Church | Harrison, Beverly Wildung | Heyward, Carter | Activist (religious institutions) | Feminism | Theology | Women and Religion | New York | New York City | Clergy Activist