Ecclesiology and Postmodernity: Questions for the Church in Our Time

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Liturgical Press, 2007 - Philosophy - 249 pages
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What in the world is postmodernity? Is it the dominant reality today? If it is, what does it mean to be a church in a postmodern world? It seems that the church had a difficult time coming to terms with a modern world, an era ruled by the claims of scientific certainty. Having done so, more or less, it is now confronted by the claims of postmodernity, which seem to reverse the whole equation, to say that certainty and objectivity are chimeras. What is truth?" Pilate asked, and postmodernity 'at least as caricatured by its opponents 'responds: "There's no such thing."

Gerard Mannion, in Ecclesiology and Postmodernity, addresses the situation of the church in a postmodern world. The fundamental changes in human society and culture wrought by the twentieth century require the church to consider its response in the twenty-first century. What is the church's moral Vision, how does its practice look, what is the nature of its aspiration toward holiness in our times? Mannion believes that since Vatican II, the Catholic Church has been in a kind of limbo, awaiting a Vision of its own life for the future. Rather than focusing on specific controversies, Mannion offers concrete suggestions about how the church can create a better harmony between its own self-understanding, its ecclesiological Vision, and its day-to-day life, its ecclesial practice.

Gerard Mannion, PhD, educated at King's College, Cambridge University and New College, Oxford University, is Associate Professor of Ecclesiology and Ethics in the Department of Theology and Religious Studies at Liverpool Hope University, UK. He is also the director of Church In Our Times: Centre for the Study of Contemporary Ecclesiology, co-director of the Applied Ethics Initiative at Liverpool Hope, co-chair of the AAR (American Academy of Religion) Ecclesiological Investigations Program Unit and co-ordinator of the Ecclesiological Investigations International Research Network. Mannion is the author of Schopenhauer, Religion and Morality and co-editor of Readings in Church Authority 'Gifts and Challenges for Contemporary Catholicism, both published by Ashgate in 2003, and co-editor of the forthcoming volumes The Routledge Companion to the Christian Church andCatholic Social Justice: Theological and Practical Explorations.

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Contents

A New Paradigm for the Catholic Church?
3
Postmodernity and the Church
25
Problematic Ecclesiological Responses to Postmodernity
41
The Church and Religious Other
75
Attention to Consultation and Method
94
The Science of Bridgebuilding
105
Dialogue and the Priority of Love
112
Authority in Dialogue
118
Ecumenical InvestigationsToward a Wider Ecumenical
146
Lieven Boeve and Postmodernitys
155
The Promise of Comparative
171
Analogic Ecclesiae The Vision of a Virtuous Community
175
From Virtue Ethics to a Virtue Ecclesiology
192
The Misappropriation of Virtue Ethics in the Service
201
Alisdair MacIntyres Own Solutions to Modernitys Ills
212
Being Concerned with Love Beginnings of a Virtue
223

Preliminaries for an Ecclesiological Methodology
124
Learning to Listen
132

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Page 3 - Concerns [T]he church has always had the duty of scrutinizing the signs of the times and of interpreting them in the light of the gospel.

About the author (2007)

Gerard Mannion is Associate Professor of Ecclesiology and Ethics in the Department of Theology and Religious Studies at Liverpool Hope University.

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