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YOUTH

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Catholic theologians on the continent were moved by the same forces that touched their countrymen. And their reaction was in the tradition of a long history of Catholic theology. Sensitive to the values of their contemporaries, they structured their theological models to incorporate these. The impact of their efforts across the whole theological spectrum is well known. God's grace was seen as his loving presence to men; the sacraments as encounters with Christ, faith as men's total commitment in response to the divine invitation, the individual ethical imperative as a counterpoint to the ethics of law. Here again theology is in a position to speak to today's youth in their concern for the person. But it is also in a position to remind them that man is not simply a person. He is a fellow man, living in community, possible only in community. And in the Christian community that is the church there is an apostolic witness against which he must check his values, his conclusions if he is not to spin off into doctrinal sectarianism.

PROCESS; MOBILITY

It is obvious from what we have already said about the recent history of theology that it cannot be a static thing. If it re-

mains immobile, society moves away from it because society itself is in motion. It must be flexibly responsive, yet challenging, if it is to remain alive. This important dynamic of the science received new reinforcement from the Second Vatican Council. Theologians received an implicit mandate from the Council for a massive reinterpretation of the Christian dogmatic. Massive, because nothing remains beyond scrutiny; reinterpretation because while the substance of the dogmatic is inviolable it is capable of both further penetration and more precise articulation. Theology is aware today, as it has not been for seven centuries, of the truth of Aquinas' remark that human nature is not immutabk~a quality he ascribes only to God. If this is true of man, it is all the more true of man's view of man and of God. The wealth of contemporary philosophical insight precludes a univocal philosophical posture. Theology has a pro-

Profile for Chicago Studies

Spring 1969  

Volume 8:1

Spring 1969  

Volume 8:1

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