In The Achievement of Hans Urs von Balthasar, Matthew Levering has written a book for theologically educated readers who mistrust von Balthasar or who mistrust von Balthasar’s critics. The book shows that von Balthasar’s critics can and should benefit both from the rich and wide-ranging conversations that mark his trilogy and from the critical and constructive engagement with German philosophical modernity offered by the trilogy. In addition, Levering hopes to show that those who mistrust von Balthasar’s critics need to be more Balthasarian in their response to criticisms of the Swiss theologian.
Presented here for the first time in English translation (from Rufinus's Latin version) is the Apology for Origen, the sole surviving work of St. Pamphilus of Caesarea (d. 310 AD), who was one of the most celebrated priest-martyrs of the ancient Church
Become Like the Angels
Benjamin P. Blosser Catholic University of America Press, 2012 Library of Congress BR65.O68B56 2012 | Dewey Decimal 233.5
Become Like the Angels explores Origen's legacy and, in particular, his teachings about the origin, nature, and destiny of the human person. By way of a historical critical approach, Benjamin P. Blosser discusses the influence of Middle Platonic philosophy on the human soul and then compares it with Origen's teaching.
It’s frequently said that we live in a “post-truth” age. That obviously can’t be true, but it does name a real problem on our hands. Getting things right is hard, especially if they’re complicated. It takes preparation, diligence, and honesty. Wisdom, according to Thomas Aquinas, is the quality of right judgment. This book is about the problem of becoming wise, the problem “before truth.” It is about that problem particularly as it comes up for religious, philosophical, and theological truth claims. Before Truth: Lonergan, Aquinas, and the Problem of Wisdom proposes that Bernard Lonergan’s approach to these problems can help us become wise. One of the special problems facing Christian believers today is our awareness of how much our tradition has developed. This development has occurred along a path shot through with contingencies. Theologians have to be able to articulate how and why doctrines, institutions, and practices that have developed—and are still developing—should nevertheless be worthy of our assent and devotion.
Cardinal Tommaso de Vio (1469-1534), commonly known as Cajetan, remains a misunderstood figure. Cajetan on Sacred Doctrine is the first ever monograph on Cajetan as a theologian in his own right, and it fills an immense lacuna in the debate on the nature of sacred doctrine from the Thomism of the Renaissance. Confirming Cajetan as a key protagonist within the emergent Reformation, this work delivers an indispensable immersion into his theological method in relation to his closest predecessors and contemporaries: Hervaeus Natalis, Blessed Duns Scotus, Gregory of Rimini, Johannes Capreolus, Silvestro Mazzolini da Prierio, Martin Luther, and others.
The first ever commentary on St. Thomas Aquinas’s entire Summa Theologiae was published by Cajetan. This monograph focuses primarily on the Summa Theologiae Ia pars, question 1, concerning sacred doctrine, and how Cajetan unpacks the potency of Aquinas’s opening syllogism, setting forth a coherent division of the question, and ultimately touching the mind of Aquinas when revealing the articles of the Apostles’ Creed as the Summa Theologiae’s macrostructure. Finally, we are shown how Cajetan emphasizes the essential link between ecclesiology and the communication of sacred doctrine, especially the papacy’s role in guaranteeing the proposal and explication of the faith.
Cajetan’s accomplishments as a biblical exegete established him as a renowned Renaissance scholar and a forerunner of future ecumenical dialogue. Furthermore, his grasp of theology’s perennial properties continue to make him an important interlocutor in the renewed quest for a unity in theology in an ever more fragmented aggregation of theologies.
Cajetan’s theological labor is a perpetuation of the via antiqua, a biblical-theological worldview handed down through Tradition. St. Gregory the Theologian (329-390), the via antiqua’s preeminent Eastern representative and chief theological constructor of Christendom, offers the monograph’s author--himself a Byzantine Hieromonk--a prime opportunity for a few closing insights on the innate symphony between two very distant periods and distinct theological traditions within the one ecumenical Church.
Commentary on Matthew
D.H. St. Hilary of Poiters Catholic University of America Press, 2012 Library of Congress BS2575.53.H5513 2013 | Dewey Decimal 226.207
St. Jerome (347-420) has been considered the pre-eminent scriptural commentator among the Latin Church Fathers. His Commentary on Matthew, written in 398 and profoundly influential in the West, appears here for the first time in English translation.
St. Jerome's reputation rests primarily on his achievements as a translator and as a scriptural exegete. The important service that he rendered to the Church in his doctrinal works is often overlooked or minimized by those who look for originality and independence of thought
The Eyes of Faith presents a systematic theology of the sense of the faithful (sensus fidelium) and shows the fundamental and necessary interrelationship between sensus fidelium, tradition, Scripture, theology, and the magisterium.
Known as one of the most outstanding theologians of the twentieth century, Wolfhart Pannenberg is also considered a great interdisciplinary thinker. Now, essays and articles on science and theology that are central to understanding Pannenberg's theories have been collected into one volume.
Niels Henrik Gregersen, a former student of Pannenberg and now professor of systematic theology at Copenhagen University, has compiled the writings in four sections: Methodology, Creation and Nature's Historicity, Religion and Anthropology, and Meaning and Metaphysics. Included in this volume are:
•Translations of Pannenberg's principled argument for the consonance between science and religion, including contingency and laws of nature, field theories and space-time, and divine action
•Translations of Pannenberg's theory of theology as a rational hypothetical science, including his discussions with leading British and American scholars such as A. N. Whitehead, John Cobb, and Langdon Gilkey
•Previously unpublished articles on the problems between science and theology in the course of modern history, explaining why chance may be more important for theology than design
•Translations of seminal articles that articulate Pannenberg's understanding of the role of religion in human nature
•One of the few theological articles on aggression as a psychological and social phenomenon
With this collection, the essays of this important contemporary theologian and his illuminating views are presented in one convenient volume.
In this second volume of translations from the Iberian Fathers appear the works of two seventh-century writers. From the first of these, bishop Braulio of Saragossa, a figure in Visigothic literature second only to St. Isidore of Seville, comes an extensive collection of letters. These are variously addressed to Isidore himself, to other ecclesiastics, to Pope Honorius, and to King Receswinth; friends and relatives were the recipients of seven letters of consolation. Braulio's letters are joined by the Life of a near contemporary, St. Emilian, and by a valuable list of the writings of Isidore, under whom Braulio studied. Fructuousus of Braga is represented by two monastic rules. The first of these was composed for Compludo, a foundation made by Fructousus himself; the other rule is a general or common one. Two other writings dealing with monastic practice accompany these rules, together with a letter to King Receswinth.
The writings of this author are, together with those of Eusebius, the principal sources for the period of the great persecution of Diocletian and for the first years of the peace of the Church after the Edict of Milan.
Neither Nature nor Grace operates at the intersection of systematic and philosophical theology, exploring in particular how St. Thomas Aquinas variously uses the latter in service to the clarification and faithful advancement of the former. More specifically, Neither Nature nor Grace explores the overlooked logical difficulties that have followed the late modern debates in ecumenical Christian theology as to whether knowledge of God is available solely through God’s gracious self-revelation (e.g., Jesus Christ and Holy Scripture), or through revelation and the deliverances of natural reason. Van Wart takes the prominent French Dominican Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange as paradigmatic for the case that knowledge of God can be had by both revelation and natural reason. Representing the opposing position, that God can only be known through divine revelation, Van Wart highlights the work of influential Protestant theologian Karl Barth. By placing these two imposing 20th century theologians in conversation, and by providing a careful theo-philosophical analysis of the logical mechanics of each thinker’s respective arguments, Van Wart shows how both inadvertently overreach their self-professed epistemological bounds and just so run into significant problems maintaining the coherence of their relative theological positions. That is, against their expressed intentions to the contrary, both thinkers unwittingly evacuate the divine essence of the mystery Christian tradition has always previously claimed it to have, effectively reducing the being of God to mere creaturely being writ large. As a contrasting corrective to this problem, Van Wart proffers a constructive grammatical reading of Aquinas’s measured account of the crucial but often overlooked logical differences between what can be said of the divine, on the one hand, versus what can be known of God, on the other. While many recent works have attempted to solve the ongoing arguments which Garrigou-Lagrange and Barth epitomize regarding the epistemic use of God’s effects, Van Wart’s contribution constructively pushes the conversation to a different level in showing how Aquinas’s grammar of God provides a salutary means of dissolving and moving beyond these contentious debates altogether.
This study will be useful for those who study the development of the doctrine of the Trinity, as well as those who are interested in the role of scriptural and philosophical resources in Christian theology. Fi
Any realist metaphysics must include an integrated account of the transcendentals and the analogy of being, for an adequate metaphysics must be about everything, and all things share in some key metaphysical characteristic—being, unity, truth, goodness, and beauty. However, they do not share in them in exactly the same way. Therefore, there is need to explain the transcendental characteristics in an analogical way. By using the phrase “transcendental analogies,” Reason, Revelation and Metaphysics claims that there are analogies of unity, truth, goodness, and beauty, which are related to, but irreducible to, the analogy of being. As this book is a systematic study of the topic, theoretical reason has primacy in the project and metaphysics is given pride of place. But reason is practical and aesthetic as well; that is, our consciences urge us to seek what is good, and we are delighted by what is beautiful. Although goodness and beauty are not reducible to truth, they must be included in any adequate metaphysical account, for metaphysics looks to explain everything.
Although metaphysics is traditionally thought to be a philosophical project involving ontology and natural theology, Montague Brown argues that an adequate metaphysics must ultimately be theological, including within its scope the truths of revelation. Philosophical reason’s examination of the transcendental analogies raises questions that it cannot answer. We experience a world of many beings, truths, goods, and beauties. Recognizing that these many instances have something in common, we affirm a transcendent instance of each (traditionally called God). However, although we know that a transcendent instance exists, we do not know its nature: therefore, we cannot say how it is related to the other instances. If we try to apply this transcendent instance as the prime analogate to shed light on the other analogates, we must fail, for the abstractness and universality of the transcendent instance can add nothing to our understanding of the particular instances. Wanting to know how the many exist and are related, philosophical reason finds no way forward and recognizes its need for help.
It is the thesis of this book that reason finds this help only in the revelation of the God’s covenantal relation with the world. The first principle of all things—most perfectly revealed in Jesus Christ, perfect God and perfect man—is really and freely related to us. Only by accepting this revealed prime analogate can the transcendental analogies bear fruit in our ongoing quest for understanding.
The essays in this volume explore three areas in which St. Thomas Aquinas's voice has never fallen silent: sacred doctrine, the relationship of sacraments and metaphysics, and the central role of virtue in moral theology.
Stromateis, Books 1–3
Clement of Alexandria Catholic University of America Press, 1991 Library of Congress BR60.F3C56 | Dewey Decimal 270
Books One to Three of the Stromateis establish Clement's fundamental theology--a harmony of faith and knowledge that places Greek philosophy at the service of faith, which is, to Clement, more important than knowledge.
This is the first part of Paul Tillich's three-volume Systematic Theology, one of the most profound statements of the Christian message ever composed and the summation and definitive presentation of the theology of the most influential and creative American theologian of the twentieth century.
In this path-breaking volume Tillich presents the basic method and statement of his system—his famous "correlation" of man's deepest questions with theological answers. Here the focus is on the concepts of being and reason. Tillich shows how the quest for revelation is integral to reason itself. In the same way a description of the inner tensions of being leads to the recognition that the quest for God is implied in finite being.
Here also Tillich defines his thought in relation to philosophy and the Bible and sets forth his famous doctrine of God as the "Ground of Being." Thus God is understood not as a being existing beside other beings, but as being-itself or the power of being in everything. God cannot be made into an object; religious knowledge is, therefore, necessarily symbolic.
In this volume, the second of his three-volume reinterpretation of Christian theology, Paul Tillich comes to grips with the central idea of his system—the doctrine of the Christ. Man's predicament is described as the state of "estrangement" from himself, from his world, and from the divine ground of his self and his world. This situation drives man to the quest for a new state of things, in which reconciliation and reunion conquer estrangement. This is the quest for the Christ.
In this volume, the third and last of his Systematic Theology, Paul Tillich sets forth his ideas of the meaning of human life, the doctrine of the Spirit and the church, the trinitarian symbols, the relation of history to the Kingdom of God, and the eschatological symbols. He handles this subject matter with powerful conceptual ability and intellectual grace.
The problem of life is ambiguity. Every process of life has its contrast within itself, thus driving man to the quest for unambiguous life or life under the impact of the Spritual Presence. The Spritual Presence conquers the negativities of religion, culture, and morality, and the symbols anticipating Eternal Life present the answer to the problem of life.
Thomas' presentation of Trinitarian doctrine in his Summa Theologiae is an essential text for anyone interested in the great Dominican's theology. One finds here the meeting of a host of philosophical and theological issues.
Most contemporary theologies of Holy Orders consider priesthood mainly in its diocesan context and most contemporary theologies of religious life do not consider how ordained ministry functions when it is internal rather than external to religious life. Understanding the Religious Priesthood provides a history and theology of religious priesthood that contributes to our understanding of this vocation’s identity and mission. It uncovers what religious priesthood shares with diocesan priesthood and non-ordained religious life and what makes it different from both those other vocations.
Christian Raab begins by tracing the history of religious priesthood from its origins in the early Church to the eve of the Second Vatican Council. He demonstrates that religious priests often faced questions about how to reconcile their two callings, but that they also provided answers in their theologies and spiritualities of priesthood and religious life. Meanwhile, they made key contributions to the Church’s life and mission. Raab then investigates the teachings of the Second Vatican Council on priesthood and religious life. Observing that the Council presented priesthood according to a diocesan typology and presented religious life without sacerdotal associations, he argues that the lack of imagery of religious priesthood contributed to a post-conciliar vocational identity crisis among religious priests. He then seeks to remedy this lacuna by appealing to the biblical images for religious priesthood Hans Urs von Balthasar offered in his theology of vocations. Raab argues that Balthasar’s imagery is a promising way forward for understanding the identity and mission of religious priesthood. In a final part, Raab provides a substantial theological articulation of religious priesthood which illuminates its liturgical signification, ecclesial mediation and mission, and ministerial identity. Here he draws not only from Balthasar but also from Pope John Paul II, Yves Congar, Jean-Marie Tillard, Brian Daley, and Guy Mansini to construct his profile.