26 September 2005

de lubac

It looks as if Henri de Lubac's important work Corpus Mysticum: The Eucharist and the Church in the Middle Ages will at last be published by SCM press in June 2006. Here's the blurb:

One of the major figures of 20th century Catholic theology, Henri Cardinal de Lubac SJ was particularly renowned for his attention to the doctrine of the Church and its life within the contemporary world. In this book, de Lubac opens an initial exploration of the Church as made by the Eucharist and gives new expression to that mystery in which the Church is believed to consist. As one whose generous and fervent spirit contributed significantly to the thinking of the Second Vatican Council, de Lubac’s influence has been widespread, making a substantial impact also on the development of ecumenical relations between Catholic, Protestant and Orthodox theologians. With the publication of this English translation of Corpus Mysticum, this important text of contemporary Catholic ecclesiology and sacramental theology is made available to the Anglophone world and joins the substantial range of de Lubac’s works now accessible to scholars.

I first ran across this work at lest 15 years ago, while I was an undergrad in college and was reading through a number of de Lubac's other works. It seemed at the time to be a very important work of both historical investigation and of positive theological development, but it's only been available in French. While I've picked up the French edition on numerous occasions over the past years and poked away at bits of it, I've neither the fluency nor patient to make significant progress. Thus I very much look forward to its publication in English and being able to give closer attention to the developments in eucharistic theology and ecclesiology that are not only theologically significant, but also form part of the backdrop to the shifts that resulted in the Reformation.