The Rev. Dr. Raphael Warnock has served, since 2005, as the Senior Pastor of the historic Ebenezer Baptist Church, spiritual home of The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Under Pastor Warnock’s leadership, more than 5,000 new members have joined Ebenezer, enhancing the Church’s legacy of social activism with both spiritual and numerical growth. Additionally, he has led Ebenezer in a successful fundraising campaign to build the $8.5 million Martin Luther King, Sr. Community Resources Complex which houses the Church’s administrative offices, the fellowship hall, classrooms, meeting rooms and a MLK Collaborative of several nonprofit partners, including Casey Family Programs and The Center for Working Families. All initiatives engaged together in helping individuals and families to improve their own life outcomes and live healthier and more prosperous lives.
As a pastor, Rev. Dr. Warnock sees the whole community as his parish. Accordingly, he has defended voting rights in his own State of Georgia. In 2006, the State of Louisiana failed to protect the voting rights of recent HurricaneKatrina evacuees, he intervened and led a “Freedom Caravan” of citizens back to New Orleans to vote. Dr. Warnock has taken on the contradictions in our criminal justice system, public education, health care, HIV/AIDS and has defended the downtrodden and disenfranchised through his preaching and his fierce public advocacy.
The Rev. Dr. Warnock graduated from Morehouse College cum laude in 1991, receiving the Bachelor of Artsdegreein Psychology. He also holds a Master of Divinitydegree from Union Theological Seminary, New York City, from which he graduated with honors and distinctions. Seeing his pastoral work as tied to the ministry of scholarship and the life of the mind, Rev. Warnock continued his graduate studies at Union, receiving a Master of Philosophy degree and a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree in the field of systematic theology.
Warnock is known for his first book, which is entitled, The Divided Mind of the Black Church; Theology, Piety & Public Witness (NYU Press, 2014). He is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., the 100 Black Men of Atlanta, Inc. and a Lifetime Member of the NAACP.
In January 2021, Dr. Warnock became Georgia's first Black senator and the first Black Democrat to represent a southern state in the United States Senate.