Introduction to Moral Theology (Catholic Moral Thought, Volume 1)

Introduction to Moral Theology (Catholic Moral Thought, Volume 1)

Romanus Cessario
Copyright Date: 2001
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  • Book Info
    Introduction to Moral Theology (Catholic Moral Thought, Volume 1)
    Book Description:

    The present volume, the first in the new Catholic Moral Thought series, responds to the need for a new introduction to the basic and central elements of Catholic moral theology written in the light of Veritatis splendor.

    eISBN: 978-0-8132-2037-6
    Subjects: Religion

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. Acknowledgments
    (pp. ix-x)
  4. Introduction
    (pp. xi-xxvi)

    The present volume introduces a series of textbooks which aims to provide upper division and graduate students with a well-rounded and readable account of the principal branches of moral theology according to the way that the discipline has actually developed and is now practiced within the Roman Catholic tradition.¹

    Each volume in the Catholic Moral Thought Series is designed to provide students with a comprehensive presentation of both the principles of Christian conduct and the specific teachings and precepts for fulfilling the requirements of the Christian life. The authoritative statements of the Roman Catholic Church supply the normative principles for...

  5. CHAPTER ONE The Starting Point for Christian Moral Theology
    (pp. 1-51)

    Introduction to Moral Theology proceeds on the view that the best introduction to a theological understanding of the moral life proclaimed in the name of Christ by the Catholic Church is one rooted in the moral realism developed, among others, by Saint Thomas Aquinas.¹ This text presents moral theology as integrally united with dogmatic and spiritual theology, as the systematically ordered study of the journey of a human person, made in the image and likeness of God, back to the Father. It is held that the moral realism identified with the Thomist tradition and found in the ethical writings of...

  6. CHAPTER TWO Moral Realism and the Natural Law
    (pp. 52-99)

    Among the theological motifs that dominate both the Old and New Testaments, the theme of God’s wisdom enjoys a prominent place. St. Paul associates divine wisdom with the revelation made in Christ when he exclaims, “But we speak God’s wisdom, secret and hidden, which God decreed before the ages for our glory” (1 Cor 2:7). The Christian tradition in turn accepts the canonical books of the Bible as the written expression of divine wisdom. St. Jerome accordingly counsels believers: “Love the holy Scriptures, and wisdom will love you. Love wisdom, and she will keep you safe. Honor wisdom, and she...

  7. CHAPTER THREE The Origin and Structure of Virtuous Behavior
    (pp. 100-148)

    Natural law quickens both the human cognitive and conative powers. As we have seen, it establishes in the human person the foundation for an entente-cordiale between the intelligent pursuit of moral truth and the human appetite for the good. In human acts, reason and will are rooted together; or again, as Aristotle observed, “they are one.”¹ This unity actually represents a synergism of intellect and appetite, as together these human powers actualize the thrust latent in the structural tendencies of human nature to reach out for a desirable end.

    Since natures bear within their very composition the dynamism for seeking...

  8. CHAPTER FOUR The Form of a Good Moral Action
    (pp. 149-191)

    Christian teleological ethics illustrate the sort of intrinsic morality that alone is worthy of the kerygmatic proclamation of God’s kingdom that Christ enacts through the mysteries of his life, death, resurrection, and glorification. The relationship between salvation and the moral life is not an accidental one. The New Testament scholar Rudolph Schnackenburg indeed refers the entire moral teaching of the New Testament to the eschatological fulfillment that Christ both announces in his preaching and realizes in his person and life. “Because [Christ] proclaims God’s kingdom as imminent, indeed as present, palpable, and effective in his own person and works,” writes...

  9. CHAPTER FIVE The Life of Christian Virtue and Freedom
    (pp. 192-228)

    From its earliest days, the Christian Church professed both to teach about a new way of life and to confer it on those who accepted the Gospel in faith.¹ Consider the practice of community life, as recorded in the Acts of the Apostles: “Now the company of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one said that any of the things which he possessed was his own, but they had everything in common” (Acts 4:32). An objective as noble and arduous as maintaining a common life tells us something important about the character of “those who...

  10. APPENDIX Flight from Virtue: The Outlook of the Casuist Systems
    (pp. 229-242)
  11. Select Bibliography
    (pp. 243-252)
  12. Index
    (pp. 253-268)
  13. Back Matter
    (pp. 269-270)