Vigen Guroian is a permanent Senior Fellow of the Russell Kirk Center and Professor of Religious Studies in Orthodox Christianity at the University of Virginia. He is the recipient of the University of Virginia Student Council Distinguished Teacher Award for 2010–2011.
His wife, June Vranian, works as an interior designer. They have two grown children, Rafi and Victoria. June and Vigen live in Culpeper, Virginia on five acres of rolling countryside where they enjoy tending their large perennial and vegetable gardens, keeping bees, and strolling down the wooded “Wordsworthian Walk” to Hungry Run.
Dr. Guroian received his B.A. from the University of Virginia in 1970 and his Ph.D. in Theology from Drew University in 1978. He has authored ten books and contributed nearly two hundred articles to books, journals, encyclopedias, magazines, and newspapers. His books have been translated into Greek, Russian, and Romanian.
Tending the Heart of Virtue: How Classic Stories Awaken a Child’s Moral Imagination, published in 1998, received national attention in newspapers and on radio, including NPR’s “Talk of the Nation,” and “The Mark Steiner Show.” It has continued to be read and used as an educational resource by parents, homeschoolers, religious instructors, and classical school faculties.
Dr. Guroian has written two books of Christian meditations on gardening. Inheriting Paradise (1999) and The Fragrance of God (2006). These are by the author’s own admission his favorite writing. They have earned him invitations to speak and give readings from gardening groups and churches in America and Great Britain. Mars Hill Audio offers a complete recording of Inheriting Paradise read by the author. The Fragrance of God has been the subject of an interview with the author on the syndicated National Public Radio Program, “On Being” (previously “Speaking of Faith”).
In 2005, ISI Books issued a collection of Dr. Guroian’s essays on literature, politics, education, and ethics. The book’s title is Rallying the Really Human Things. It includes such chapters as “On Fairy Tales and the Moral Imagination,” “On the Office of Being a Good Son or Daughter.” “Huxley’s Mirror,” “Flannery O’Connor: The Art of Incarnation,” “Dorm Brothel,” and “Why Should Businessmen Read Great Literature?”
Over the years, Dr. Guroian has gained prominence as an Eastern Orthodox theologian and ethicist. His first book Incarnate Love: Essays in Orthodox Ethics (1987) is a favored text in college and seminary courses, and the University of Notre Dame Press published a second expanded edition in 2002. In 2004, Wipf and Stock Publishers reissued his second book on ethics in the Orthodox tradition, Ethics After Christendom: Toward an Ecclesial Christian Ethic (1994). His most recent book The Melody of Faith: Theology in an Orthodox Key was published in 2010.
In past years, Dr. Guroian has been active in both the National Council of Churches and the World Council of Churches. He has served for many years as an advisor to the Armenian Religious Education Council of the Prelacy of the Armenian Church of America.
He is Senior Fellow of the Center on Law and Religion of Emory University, Senior Fellow of the Trinity Forum, and an ongoing Fellow of the Wilberforce Forum under Prison Fellowship Ministries founded by the late Charles Colson.
Dr. Guroian is the author of several books as well as an edition of Russell Kirk's ghost stories, Ancestral Shadows: An Anthology of Ghostly Tales (Eerdmans, 2005):
- The Melody of Faith: Theology in an Orthodox Key (Eerdmans, 2010)
- The Fragrance of God (Eerdmans, 2006)
- Rallying The Really Human Things: Moral Imagination In Politics Literature & Everyday Life (ISI Books, 2005)
- Inheriting Paradise: Meditations on Gardening (Wm. B. Eerdmans Pub. Co., 1999);
- Tending the Heart of Virtue: How Classic Stories Awaken a Child’s Moral Imagination (Oxford University Press, 1998);
- Life’s Living toward Dying: A Theological and Medical-Ethical Study (Wm. B. Eerdmans Pub. Co., 1996);
- Faith, Church, Mission: Essays for Renewal in the Armenian Church (Armenian Prelacy, 1995);
- Ethics After Christendom: Toward an Ecclesial Christian Ethic (Wm. B. Eerdmans Pub. Co., 1994); and
- Incarnate Love: Essays in Orthodox Ethics (University of Notre Dame Press, 1987, 2002).
- Transcript of Dr. Guroian’s 1999 Kirk Memorial Lecture at the Heritage Foundation: “Moral Imagination, Humane Letters, and the Renewal of Society” (PDF also available).
- You can listen to two lectures by Vigen Guroian (“Moral Imagination” and “G. K. Chesterton and Christian Humanism”) at the Intercollegiate Studies Institute site.