Lawrence S. Cunningham, John A. O’Brien Professor of Theology at the University of Notre Dame, will receive the University of Portland’s highest honor, the Christus Magister Medal, at the university’s 2011 commencement exercises on May 8.
Cunningham, a scholar of systematic theology and culture, Christian spirituality, and the history of Christian spirituality, joined the Notre Dame faculty in 1987, having taught at Florida State University for the previous 21 years. An award-winning teacher who chaired Notre Dame’s Department of Theology from 1992 to 1997, he also has written for a wide variety of scholarly and popular journals, contributed numerous articles to encyclopedias and dictionaries of religion and is the author or editor of some 25 books, including, most recently, “Things Seen and Unseen: A Catholic Theologian’s Notebook.”
Adept at explaining complex and sometimes arcane details of Church history, liturgy, teaching, governance and spiritual life, Cunningham is frequently consulted by journalists covering religious topics.
The recipient of numerous honors for his writing from the Catholic Press Association, Cunningham also has received honorary degrees from Bellarmine University, Neumann College and Saint Anselm’s College.