The Festschrift is out now

A Celebration of Living Theology

It is a great pleasure to announce the publication of the plenary papers presented at the conference. The Festschrift in Prof Andrew Louth’s honour is edited by Justin A. Mihoc and Leonard Aldea as part of Bloomsbury’s T&T Clark Theology series. It can be purchased from the publisher, Amazon, and Book Depository, and is also available in libraries.

From the publisher’s description:
This volume brings together an international range of world-class scholars to engage with Andrew Louth’s work and its influence on modern Theology. Andrew Louth is well known and influential in the English-speaking circles but also in the non-English Orthodox world, especially across Eastern Europe. The interaction between these theological groups remains sparse and intermittent. By drawing together scholars from the three main branches of Christianity and from around the world, this volume helps to increase our knowledge and exposure between these different spheres. This volume comprises of articles on Patristics, Byzantine Fathers, Latin Fathers, Modern Christianity, Theology as Life and the reception of Louth’s work outside the English-speaking world. The papers are written by the leading scholars, such as Lewis Ayres, John Milbank, Kallistos Ware and Thomas Graumann.

Table of Contents:


Introduction Lewis Ayres

Part 1 Patristics
1 Reading the Fathers Today John Behr
2 Authority and Doctrinal Normation in Patristic Discourse: The Nicene Creed at the First Council of Ephesus Thomas Graumann

Part 2 Byzantine Theology
3 The Impact of ps-Dionysius the Areopagite on Byzantine Theologians of the Eighth Century: The Concept of ‘Image’ Mary B. Cunningham
4 Why should we read Middle Byzantine Fathers? Jane Baun
5 ‘Myriad of Names to Represent Her Nobleness’: The Church and the Virgin Mary in the Psalms and Hymns of Byzantium Krastu Banev

Part 3 East and West in Dialogue
6 Christianity and Platonism in East and West John Milbank
7 Boethius the Theologian Augustine Casiday

Part 4 Modern Theology
8 Towards a Fair History of Christian Orthodoxy Antoine Arjakovsky
9 Vladimir Lossky’s Reception of Georges Florovsky’s Neo-Patristic Theology Paul L. Gavrilyuk

Part 5 The Future of Patristics
10 Patristics after Neo-Patristic Cyril Hovorun
11 ‘Following the Holy Fathers’: Is there a Future for Patristic Studies? Kallistos Ware, Metropolitan of Diokleia

A Bibliography of Prof Andrew Louth


Index of References

Photos from the Conference

The conference ended last week and we had the great pleasure to welcome to Durham some of today’s greatest Patristic scholars.

We thank you all for your attendance and hope that you enjoyed the conference as much as we did.

Here are a few photos taken last week:

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Conference Programme

Monday, July 9

11.00-1.30      Conference Registration (St Chad’s College, Reception)
2.00                  Welcome from the Department

2.15-3.00         Plenary Paper 1 (Latin Fathers): John Milbank (University of Nottingham), Orthodoxy after Gnosticism: a Re-reading of recapitulation and apocatastasis
3.00-3.45         Plenary Paper 2 (Theology in Context): Krastu Banev (Durham University), The Mother of God in the Psalms and Songs of Byzantium: The ‘Myriad Names’ of an Earlier Mystery
3.45-4.15         Q&A Read the full post »


Please note that the registration fee is different for presenters and non-presenters. To download the registration form, click here.

Registration for presenters:

1. Submit your abstract for consideration.

2. You will receive acceptance or rejection by April 9th.

3. You will then have until April 20th to send the full registration fee and form.

4. Should you wish to cancel your registration at a later stage, unfortunately, no refund is available.

Registration for non-presenters:

1. Send your registration form and fee by June 30th.

2. Should you wish to cancel your registration at a later stage, unfortunately, no refund is available.

Conference Announcement

Durham University in conjunction with the Department of Theology and Religion will be hosting the conference ‘A celebration of living theology: Engaging with the work of Andrew Louth’ on 9-12 July 2012 at Durham University. The conference aims to celebrate the work of Andrew Louth in the areas of Patristics, both Western and Eastern, Modern Theology and Theology as Life, as well as explore its reception outside the English-speaking world. The plenary papers will be collected into a Festschrift to be published after the conference.

The confirmed plenary speakers are:

Antoine Arjakovsky: ‘Towards a new History of Christian Orthodoxy’.
John Behr, ‘Studying the Fathers Today’.
Augustine Casiday, ’Boethius the Theologian’.
Mary Cunningham: ‘The Impact of ps-Dionysios the Areopagite on Byzantine Theologians of the Eighth Century: The Concept of “Image”’.
Paul Gavrilyuk: ‘Vladimir Lossky’s Reception of George Florovsky’s Neopatristic Theology’.
Cyril Hovorun: ‘Patristics after Neo-Patristics’.
John Milbank, ‘Orthodoxy after Gnosticism: a Re-reading of recapitulation and apocatastasis’.
Kallistos Ware: ‘Trends and Tasks in Contemporary Orthodox Theology’.
Jane Bauntitle tbc.
Thomas Graumann,  ‘Authority and Doctrinal Normation in Patristic Discourse’.
Lewis Ayrestitle tbc.
Krastu Banev, ‘The Mother of God in the Psalms and Songs of Byzantium: The ‘Myriad Names’ of an Earlier Mystery’.
and, of course, Andrew Louth.

Call For Papers and bursaries

Short papers of twenty minutes are welcome in the areas of:


Byzantine Fathers

Latin Fathers

Modern Christianity

Theology in Context (including subjects such as Theology and the Arts, Theology and Politics, etc)*

The Reception of Andrew Louth’s work outside the English-speaking world

Abstracts of no more than 200 words should be sent to Andrew Brower-Latz by Monday, April 2nd, 2012.

* Six accommodation bursaries are available in this category awarded by Ustinov College.

Conference Registration

The conference fee is now only GBP£100. This includes registration, a buffet lunch on the final day, and tea and coffee throughout. Accommodation is not included, but many of Durham’s colleges offer accommodation and there are many B&B’s nearby.

Conference registration details will be announced shortly.

About Andrew Louth

Andrew Louth has been in Durham since 1996 and was Professor of Patristic and Byzantine Studies in the Department of Theology and Religion at Durham University until 2010. Prof Louth studied Mathematics and Theology at Edinburgh and Cambridge. Before coming to Durham, he taught at Oxford University and at Goldsmiths College of the University of London. Since his retirement from Durham, Prof Louth is teaching at the Free University, Amsterdam. He was also elected member of the British Academy of Sciences in 2010, and Emeritus Professor of Durham University. He is Archpriest in the Russian Orthodox Patriarchal Diocese of Sourozh, serving in the Parish of St Cuthbert and St Bede, Durham.

His research interests lie mostly in the history of theology in the Greek tradition, especially in periods later than what is generally studied in English universities, i.e. after the fifth century, the period of the Byzantine Empire (up to 1453), but also later, especially in the modern period (nineteenth century and later) where his research interests also include Russian and Romanian (Orthodox) theology. This interest also embraces the philosophical traditions (often called ‘Neoplatonic’) of the Byzantine period. Prof Louth’s interest in the theology of these periods is not purely historical, since he regards dialogue with the theological writers of the past as a resource for theological reflection today.

Prof Louth has published and translated widely, including The Origins of the Christian Mystical Tradition: from Plato to DenysDiscerning the mystery: an essay on the nature of theology, books on Dionysios (or Denys) the AreopagiteMaximos the Confessor, and John Damascene, and on the tradition of desert spirituality in the Christian tradition, both east and west (The Wilderness of God, republished in a revised edition in 2003). One recent book in a series on the history of the Christian Church over the last two thousand years is Greek East and Latin West: the Church AD 681-1071.

Food and Accommodation

Durham University’s colleges provide accommodation, for which participants should apply through individual college websites. A list of Durham colleges can be found here. We encourage all the participants to apply for accommodation with St Chad’s College, as most of the conference venues will be there. You can view their offers and book a room by checking their website here.

Alternatively, you can find a lot of hotels and B&B’s in Durham City. Among them:

Durham Marriott Hotel Royal County
Premier Inn
Three Tuns Hotel
Radisson Blue Hotel

For more information on accommodation in Durham, see the official tourism website here.

There are many restaurants around the centre of town. For a list of restaurants, bars, tea rooms and coffee shops, check the official tourism website here.

(Note: six accommodation bursaries are available for the Theology and Context panel from Ustinov College).

Reaching Durham

The Department of Theology and Religion’s home, Abbey House, is located directly next to one of the most distinctive landmarks in England, Durham Cathedral. You can find a stylised map of Durham here.

By Air: The nearest airport to Durham is Newcastle (NCL). This is served by frequent UK internal flights from London (Heathrow, Gatwick and Stanstead). There are also direct flights from several other UK destinations and various European cities, e.g. Amsterdam, Brussels and Paris.

Upon arrival at Newcastle Airport, participants have two options available to them.

a)                 A fast transit Metro service operates from Newcastle Airport direct to Newcastle Central Station. The service is frequent (typically every 10 to 15 minutes, although this depends on the time of day) and the travel time is 24 minutes.
Having reached Central Station, participants can continue their onwards journey to Durham by rail. Tickets can be purchased on the main concourse, either at the Travel Centre or (if one has enough coins) from a machine. On Arriva regional services (but not on long-distance National Rail trains) it is also acceptable to buy the ticket onboard the train. There are regular services to Durham from Newcastle; see below for more details. Typical journey time is approximately 15 minutes and tickets cost just over 3 pounds (adult, one way).

b)                 A taxi service is operated by the Airport Taxi Association. A rank is situated in front of the terminal. Durham is a 30 minute drive south along the A1 (M). Fares range from £30.00 to £35.00. It is possible, and cheaper (~£25), to book a taxi in advance; for pre-booking, call +44 (0)191 386 6662 (Paddy’s) or +44 (0)191 384 1329 (Mac’s). You can also book a taxi or an Airport Shuttle here.

Other airports: Note that there is also a smaller and less convenient airport about a half an hour away from Durham, Durham Tees Valley Airport and also a frequent rail service from Manchester Airport (see below). From the major London airports, travel to London King’s Cross for direct trains to Durham.

By Rail: Durham lies on the main London-Scotland East-coast train line and so enjoys frequent services from London (~3hrs) in the South, and Edinburgh (~2hrs) and Newcastle (15mins) in the North. The main operators on this route are East Coast and National Express.

Tickets can be purchased at stations for immediate travel, but fares are cheaper (often substantially) if booked in advance, especially if you commit yourself to travel on a particular train (although there is usually some restriction on which trains you book cheap tickets for). For availability, information and booking, you can either contact your travel agent, or online booking website. A comprehensive timetable for services in the United Kingdom is available from Network Rail.

There is a frequent bus service direct from the station to Palace Green, where the Department of Theology and Durham Cathedral are located. Taxis from the station are also inexpensive. Alternatively, you can walk from the station in about fifteen minutes, on a route that takes you through some of the most attractive parts of the city.

By Road:

For participants travelling by car, Durham is easily accessible from the North-South A1(M) motorway and from the West by the A68 and A69 main roads.

A parking permit is required for University car parks. Parking in Durham outside University premises is quite severely restricted.

Please note that Durham was not designed with cars in mind, and parking is very limited and expensive in the city. You would normally be best advised to use one of the city’s Park and Ride service. The bus stops for the Gates Shopping Centre or for the Gala Theatre are each a five-minute walk from the Department.

There are also several daily coach services into Durham Coach Station; one of the major operators in the UK is National Express. Visit their website for schedule information.


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