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The Catholic Culture Podcast

A weekly podcast hosted by musician and writer Thomas V. Mirus, exploring everything Catholic, with a special focus on arts and culture. Dedicated to the Holy Family. An extension of

May 20, 2020

It has become fashionable in traditionalist circles to blame all problems in modern theology on the so-called nouvelle théologie, including a range of thinkers such as Henri de Lubac, Karl Rahner, Hans Urs von Balthasar, Hans Küng and Josef Ratzinger. But this is based on a number of misconceptions: about the nature of the nouvelle théologie itself, and about the views held by some of these theologians.

Nouvelle théologie is not a unified movement in which everyone held the same views. Some of the “new theologians” were radicals and modernists who wanted the Church to bow to the modern world. Some were orthodox men who wanted to revitalize theology by a return to the sources: the Fathers, Scripture, and St. Thomas (in his own words, not as filtered through the commentators). Others were harder to pin down.

A broad-brush approach to the nouvelle théologie has resulted in injustices, perhaps as much to theology itself as to some good Churchmen whose reputations have been tarnished. Even Ratzinger has been dubbed a modernist by a certain trigger-happy trad celebrity. It’s time for an intervention, and theologian Richard DeClue is here to bring some sobriety.


DeClue’s Views

Richard DeClue’s blog, Sapientia Nulliformis

Episode 38: The Sacred Monster, on Garrigou-Lagrange

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