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Eugene Ludwig, OFM Cap

Professor Emeritus of History & Patristic Theology


  • ThD, Graduate Theological Union
  • MA, Manhattan College
  • BD, MTh, Maryknoll Seminary
  • BA, St. Anthony’s College

Research Interests

  • Hellenism and the function of religion and philosophy within that society
  • interactions of Hellenistic Jews and Christians with the larger society
  • the Christian Fathers as urban bishops ministering to urban congregations rather than as theologians
  • the study of the theory and practice of asceticism both within the Christian community and within non-Christian Hellenistic groups

Courses Taught

  • The Seven Councils (HS-4525)
  • History of Philosophy: Ancient (PHHS-1050)
  • Hellenistic & Roman Philosophy (HSPH-4410)
  • Patristics (PHHS-4903)
  • Philosophy for Theology (PH-1200)
  • Early Christianity to 800 (HS-5122)
  • Plato (PHHS-4020)

Recent Publications

  • Benedetto, Robert. (ed.) The New Westminster Dictionary of Church History. Volume 1 The Early, Medieval, and Reformation Eras. Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press: 2008. 34 entries.
  • Claudio Moreschini and Enrico Norelli, Early Christian Greek and Latin Literature: A History (English translation Press, 2005) Compiled English language bibliography c. 350 titles
  • “Monophysite Opposition to the Council of Chalcedon: Fifth Century Catholicity and its Challenge to Twentieth Century Ecumenism” Atti del congresso internazionale “Incontro fra canoni d'oriente e d'occidente”. Bari: Italy, Cacucci Editore, 1994, pp. 73-83

From the Professor

In the period I teach about, philosophers and theologians were not inhabitants of university departments and the interface between what now are distinct disciplines was quite lively. I am a “big picture” kind of teacher and I try to help students identify key questions that recur rather than getting lost in the details of a particular answer. I hope to instill in my students an appreciation of the shared existential concerns of Hellenistic Christians, Jews and Pagans. I encourage my students to put their energy into reading primary texts and to learn the important skill of transcultural interpretation.

I will say what every teacher says: I learn from my students. That is why teaching is a joy for me. I have been teaching at DSPT for over 40 years and my students keep me intellectually young and make me want to develop as a scholar and as a teacher. DSPT has changed over this time from a primarily clerical school to the point that today lay students pursuing MA degrees are a majority of an intellectually stimulating student population.

I have two academic heroes: the late Fr. John Meyendorff of St. Vladimir’s Seminary, and the late Massey Sepherd of the Church Divinity School of the Pacific and the director of my dissertation. They are my heroes because of the way they modeled for me how to be a scholar and teacher and to care about students. They continue to challenge me.

I am a member of the Core Doctoral Faculty of the GTU and the North American Patristics Society.

Faculty Spotlight

Eugene Ludwig, OFM Cap receives The Cross of the Ecumenical Patriarchate

Fr. Eugene Ludwig, OFM Cap, DSPT Professor of History and Patristic Theology

His All Holiness Bartholomew, Patriarch of Constantinople, has awarded Fr. Eugene Ludwig, OFM Cap, DSPT Professor of History and Patristic Theology, the cross of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in recognition of his thirty-six years of service on the Board of the Patriarch Athenagoras Orthodox Institute at the GTU. The Institute offers academic courses in the GTU and has an outreach program for Orthodox students at the GTU and the University of California.

Fr. Eugene began teaching at DSPT as an adjunct in 1975 and joined the faculty in 1981. He is a biritual priest which means he may celebrate in either Roman or Byzantine Rites. He served for many years with the Melkite Greek Catholic chaplaincy for the University of California and subsequently served five years as pastor of the Russian Catholic parish in San Francisco. When asked about his attraction to the Byzantine Church he says: “It’s how I pray.”

Fr. Eugene was a member of the founding Board when the Institute opened in 1980 and served until 2016 when he retired. Utilizing his academic expertise, he helped the Institute understand the dynamics of the GTU and was instrumental in the development of an MA program in Orthodox Studies.

Patriarchal awards to Catholic priests are made occasionally as expressions of appreciation for academic, administrative, or pastoral activity that has benefitted the Orthodox Church. This special silver cross is awarded to a presbyter and takes the shape of the cross on the seal of the Ecumenical Patriarchate. Recipients of patriarchal awards include Jesuit liturgical scholar Archimandrite Robert Taft and Fr. Hans Urs von Balthasar who was recognized for his scholarship on St. Maximos Confessor.