How Would Karl Rahner Respond to “Dominus Iesus”?

Philosophy and Theology 13 (2):425-436 (2001)
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Abstract

This short essay will attempt to show that although Karl Rahner would be in basic agreement with the concern of “Dominus Iesus” about “religious relativism” and in basic agreement with the claims of the Catholic Church (as expressed in Vatican II) about the role of Jesus as universal savior and about the unique role of the Roman Catholic church in God’s salvific plan for the world, he would not agree with the spirit or tone of this declaration from a Vatican Congregation. Rahner’s writings set a more positive tone framed by his classic retrieval of the concept of mystery in Roman Catholic theology that invites dialog with people of other religious traditions. Three characteristics of that invitational spirit of Rahner are highlighted in this essay: (1) the life-long process of becoming Christian; (2) the inadequacy of all human expressions in the face of mystery; (3) the need to be non-competitive in any ecumenical or inter-religious dialog.

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