Perkins School of Theology 2023
Charles Curran, Elizabeth Scurlock University Professor of Human Values, retired at the end of spring 2023. A Catholic priest and moral theologian, he came to SMU in 1991. Curran grew up in Rochester, New York, and was ordained in the Diocese of Rochester in 1958. Never afraid to tackle the most controversial matters in ethics, Curran was forced to leave a position at Catholic University before coming to SMU. He earned two doctorates in sacred theology at Academia Alfonsiana and the Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome, and is well-known for his work in Catholic moral theology, social ethics, and the role of the church as a moral and political actor in society. He has authored or edited approximately 70 books, including Tradition and Church Reform: Perspectives on Catholic Moral Teaching (2016), Moral Theology in the United States: A History (2008) and Loyal Dissent: Memoir of a Catholic Theologian (2006). He was the first recipient of the John Courtney Murray Award of the Catholic Theological Society and elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. The former president of three national academic guilds, Curran has been described as "arguably the most influential U.S. moral theologian" over the last half century.