Christopher Pramuk lives with his wife Lauri, a pediatrician, and their children in Cincinnati, where Chris is Associate Professor of Theology at Xavier University. Chris is the author of five books, including Hope Sings, So Beautiful: Graced Encounters Across the Color Line (2013), a sustained meditation on race relations in society and church, and two award-winning studies of Thomas Merton: At Play in Creation: Merton’s Awakening to the Feminine Divine (2015), and Sophia: The Hidden Christ of Thomas Merton (2009), recipient of the International Thomas Merton Society’s 2011 “Thomas Merton Award,” a.k.a., “The Louie,” its highest honor. Chris’s numerous essays and pastoral writings have appeared in America magazine, Theological Studies, Cross Currents, and the prayer journal Give Us This Day.
A native of Lexington, Kentucky, after graduating from the University of Kentucky in 1987, Chris moved to Colorado to study music, was drawn deeper into Buddhist and Christian spirituality, and began teaching theology at Regis Jesuit High School in Denver. After completing doctoral studies at the University of Notre Dame, Chris has been at Xavier University since 2007, teaching courses at the intersection of spirituality, race, the arts, theology, and social justice. He was recently honored as Xavier’s 2015 Teacher of the Year, and is now working on a new textbook inspired by his experience of the transforming power of the arts in the theology classroom.
Two of Chris’s four children were adopted from post-earthquake Haiti, one of the many experiences of cross-cultural encounter he writes about in Hope Sings, So Beautiful. A lifelong musician and student of African American history and spirituality, he spoke recently on race and the legacy of Thomas Merton at the Festival of Faiths in Louisville, joining an interfaith panel that included Ambassador Attallah Shabazz, the eldest daughter of Malcolm X, and Episcopal Bishop Mark Andrus. He blogs regularly and posts resources on spirituality and race at HopeSingsSoBeautiful.org.
In August of 2017, the family will relocate to Denver, where Chris begins a new role as Chair of Ignatian Thought and Professor of Religious Studies at Regis University.