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The Catholicity of the Church$
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Avery Dulles

Print publication date: 1987

Print ISBN-13: 9780198266952

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0198266952.001.0001

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Catholicity from Below: The Aspirations of Nature

Catholicity from Below: The Aspirations of Nature

(p.48) 3 Catholicity from Below: The Aspirations of Nature
The Catholicity of the Church

Avery Dulles (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

According to the catholic view, nature is fundamentally good, even though marred by sin; it is elevated, not destroyed, by grace. Human intelligence and volition are oriented towards the free acknowledgement of truth and goodness. Catholic Christianity respects the body as well as the spirit. Human nature as it concretely exists has a desire for eternal blessedness—a goal that can only be achieved through the gift of grace. God is free in bestowing the grace needed for attaining the supernatural end to which he freely calls human beings. God's saving grace is not restricted to those who receive sacraments in the Church; it leaves its mark on human institutions, including non‐Christian religions. In view of her respect for the secular, the Church involves herself with the arts and sciences, education, economics, and politics, not in order to dominate them, but in order to leaven them by the gospel.

Keywords:   Blondel, grace, Hügel, human nature, justification, Lutheranism, Tyrrell

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