This entry copied from arisbe
's journal. I'm glad he pointed this out for us. Von Balthasar's Love Alone Is Credible
, which I think is the best introduction or overall summation of his work and approach, is once again in print and currently available from Amazon. If you want to treat yourself to a wonderful piece of spiritual reading, this is your chance.
Love Alone Is Credible
VATICAN CITY, OCT. 10, 2005 (Zenit.org).- Here is the message Benedict XVI sent to the participants in the international congress entitled "Love Alone Is Credible," held at the Lateran University, on the centenary of the birth of Swiss theologian Hans Urs von Balthasar.
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Venerated Brothers in the Episcopate and the Priesthood,
Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen:
It is a particular pleasure to unite myself spiritually to you in the celebration of the centenary of the birth of Hans Urs von Balthasar, the noted Swiss theologian whom I had the joy to know and meet frequently. I think that his theological reflection maintains intact, to this day, a profound timeliness and leads many to penetrate ever more in the profundity of the mystery of faith, held by the hand of such an authoritative guide.
On an occasion such as this, it would be easy to fall into the temptation to return to personal memories, based on the sincere friendship that united us and on the numerous works that we undertook together, addressing many of the challenges of those years. The foundation of the Communio review, at the conclusion of the Second Vatican Council, continues to be the most evident sign of our common commitment in theological research. However, I do not wish to make reference to memories, but rather to the richness of von Balthasar's theology.
He made the mystery of the Incarnation the favored object of his study, seeing in the "triduum paschale" [Easter triduum] -- as he significantly entitled one of his writings -- the most expressive form of God's entry in the history of man. In the death and resurrection of Jesus, in fact, is revealed in fullness the mystery of the Trinitarian love of God. Here the reality of faith finds its unsurpassable "beauty." In the "drama" of the paschal mystery, God fully lives his humanity, but at the same time gives meaning to man's action and content to Christian commitment in the world. </a>
This is how von Balthasar saw the "logic" of Revelation: God became man so that man may live the communion of life with God. In Christ is offered the final and definitive truth of the search for meaning that each one poses to himself. Theological aesthetics, drama and logic, constitute the trilogy, in which these concepts find ample space and convinced application. I can attest that his life was a genuine search for truth, which he understood as a search of the true Life. He sought the traces of God's presence and his truth everywhere: in philosophy, in literature, in religions, always breaking those circuits which often imprison reason, opening it to the realms of the infinite.
Hans Urs von Balthasar was a theologian who put his research at the service of the Church, as he was convinced that only theology could be characterized by the ecclesial. Theology, as and how he conceived it, had to be combined with spirituality; only in this way, in fact, could it be profound and effective.( Collapse )