Along with Rahner, Lonergan, and Barth, Swiss priest and theologian Hans Urs Von Balthasar offered a faithful, intellectual response to twentieth-century modernism. This anthology commemorates the continuing impact of Balthasar's theology (which defies easy categorization) and contrasts his thought with that of his contemporaries. Contributors reflect on how strands in Balthasar's work altered the course of their own, with emphasis on his re-reading of the Church Fathers (he makes their concerns 'shockingly contemporary'), his affirmation of the uniqueness of Jesus Christ, and his recovery of the primacy of beauty. Many are drawn to Balthasar's love of the saints, his prayerfulness, and his witness to the 'joy of being a Christian and the joy of being a theologian.' The editors note that 'these essays show us how Balthasar's theology has allowed a wide variety of thinkers from a diverse intellectual backgrounds to elevate their own thought, even when they might not agree with Balthasar on a particular point. [He] allows us.to see old topics, no matter how many times we have been exposed to them, for the first time.' Taken as a whole, this anthology sheds new light not only on a respected thinker, but also on the courage of theologians who address, each in his or her own way, the devastating challenges to faith posed by modernity. 304 pp.
An Eighth Day View:
Addressing the widespread and growing interest in the thought of Catholic theologian Hans Urs von Balthasar--whose influence on Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI has been enormous--this collection, by a team of established theologians and intellectuals, reflects on Balthasar's impact. Not a collection of scholarly articles, these are essays on the way in which Balthasar's theology is being taken up into other theological and philosophical projects, as well as contemplations on how Balthasar has influenced the authors personally. Key themes include the importance of beauty, the dramatic nature of truth, the centrality of revelation, the uniqueness and universality of Christ, and the intrinsic relationship between theology and sanctity. This volume is both a first-rate introduction to Balthasar and a window into the way that great theologians understand the driving questions of their work. Contributors include Michael Hanby, Nick Healy, Francesca Murphy, Danielle Nussberger, Cyril O'Regan, Tracey Rowland, and David L. Schindler.