Reading Excerpts

At the Heart of Everything Is Jesus Christ

The [Second Vatican] council’s theology of revelation is kerygmatic in its orientation toward the fundamental Christian message. In this regard, the council’s theology of revelation is also deeply christocentric; it begins not with doctrines but with Christ and God’s desire that we enter into a communion of divine friendship through Christ and in the Spirit.

“By this revelation, then, the invisible God, from the fullness of his love, addresses men and women as his friends, and lives among them in order to invite and receive them into his own company.” (Dei Verbum, 2)

The council offers an account of revelation that gives priority to spiritual communion with God. What God shares with us is the divine self encountered in spiritual friendship. The “knowledge” we acquire through this revelation is, in the first instance, the kind of knowledge gained in personal relationship. It is not, in other words, like the knowledge of chemistry obtained through the periodic table or the knowledge one might acquire through consulting a train schedule.

Richard R. Gaillardetz, An Unfinished Council: Vatican II, Pope Francis, and the Renewal of Catholicism (Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, 2015), pp. 73-74. ISBN: 978-0-8146-8309-5.


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