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    Nouvelle Théologie and Sacramental Ontology: A Return to Mystery

    By: Hans Boersma

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    In the decades leading up to the Second Vatican Council, the movement of nouvelle théologie caused great controversy in the Catholic Church and remains a subject of vigorous scholarly debate today. In Nouvelle théologie and Sacramental Ontology Hans Boersma argues that a return to mystery was the movement's deepest motivation. Countering the modern intellectualism of the neo-Thomist establishment, the nouvelle theologians were convinced that a ressourcement of the Church Fathers and of medieval theology would point the way to a sacramental reintegration of nature and the supernatural. In the context of the loss suffered by both Catholics and Protestants in the de-sacramentalizing of modernity, Boersma shows how the sacramental ontology of nouvelle théologie offers a solid entry-pointinto ecumenical dialogue. The volume begins by setting the historical context for nouvelle théologie with discussions of the influence of significant theologians and philosophers like Möhler, Blondel, Maréchal, and Rousselot. The exposition then moves to the writings of key thinkers of the ressourcement movement including de Lubac, Bouillard, Balthasar, Chenu, Daniélou, Charlier, and Congar. Boersma analyses the most characteristic elements of the movement: its reintegration of natureand the supernatural, its reintroduction of the spiritual interpretation of Scripture, its approach to Tradition as organically developing in history, and its communion ecclesiology that regarded the Church as sacrament of Christ. In each of these areas, Boersma demonstrates how the nouvelle theologians advocated a return to mysteryby means of a sacramental ontology.

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