“Modern Theology”: Catholic and “catholic”
At Theolog, the blog of the Christian Century, the magazine’s executive editor, David Heim, notes the 25th anniversary of the journal Modern Theology, which has an issue featuring several essays on theological developments over the past quarter century. Heim welcomes the fact that the journal has catalogued a move since the early 1980′s from what “seemed a sterile standoff between modernists and fundamentalists” to something deeper today:
Without losing their engagement with philosophy and the social sciences, modern theologians of the Modern Theology type have drawn eagerly on premodern thinkers. As Nicholas Lash writes, quoting Kevin Hughes, this return to the sources of faith “is not a nostalgic retreat to the theological safety of premodern Christendom. Rather, it is a vital struggle for the proper diagnosis of our present condition.”
Furthermore, whatever a modern theologian is these days, it is usually someone who regards the liturgical and sacramental life of the church as a vital ingredient of theological reasoning. Perhaps most striking of all for a Protestant of 1980 perusing Modern Theology is the extent to which “modern theology” has become a catholic and Catholic enterprise.
As a layman with very much an outsider’s view, that strikes me as true, and a good thing for both Protestants and Catholics, upper and lower case. Yes? No?
PS: I haven’t read the 25th anniversary edition, not that I’d understand enough to alter my judgment one way or another.