Lucian Turcescu

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Lucian Turcescu (born 1966) is a Romanian-born Canadian professor of theology at Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

He emigrated to Canada in 1992, and obtained his Doctor of Philosophy degree in theology from the University of Toronto in 1999. Turcescu taught for six years at St. Francis Xavier University in Nova Scotia, where he became an associate professor and chair of the Religious Studies Department. In 2005, he was recruited as an associate professor in the Department of Theological Studies at Concordia University, where he later was promoted to Full Professor and served as Department Chair between 2011-2016.

Turcescu has done research, published, and taught in several areas, including religion and politics, early Christianity, and ecumenism. One of his main ideas is that there was no concept of person before the fourth century CE, when Christian theologians (such as the Cappadocian Fathers) had to clarify what exactly they meant by one God in three persons. Another of his ideas which has attracted quite a bit of attention is that modern theologians, such as the influential Metropolitan John Zizioulas of Pergamon, have not understood the fourth-century concept of person properly and instead applied to it modern existentialist and personalist readings (e.g., the difference between person and individual). He is also a proponent of the idea that functional democracies do not necessarily require the separation between church and state. Most of his research was supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.

He authored or co-authored several dozen peer-reviewed articles which have been published in journals such as Communist and Post-Communist Studies, Europe-Asia Studies, East European Politics and Societies, Problems of Post-Communism, Religion, State and Society, Modern Theology, Journal of Ecumenical Studies, and Vigiliae Christianae.

He organized international colloquia on „Religion and Politics in Eastern Europe” (Iaşi, Romania, 2005) and on „The Reception and Interpretation of the Bible in Late Antiquity” (Concordia University, 2006). He is Past President of the Canadian Society of Patristic Studies (2004–2008), and an Associate Editor of the Journal of Ecumenical Studies since 2004.

Turcescu served as a member of the board of directors, Canadian Corporation for Studies in Religion, and the corporation’s combined program director (1999–2002). He also helped co-found and co-direct (2002–2005) the Centre for Post-communist Studies at St. Francis Xavier University.

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