France

A Biblical Examination of an Ontological reading of Theology, in Trinity, in the [Christian] Believer and in Church

Author
Erwin Samuel Henderson Dr Ph.D.
Abstract
Ontological theology considered in some theological works, was given little significance as a primary theme. The thesis attempts to restore prominence and cohesion of an ontological construct, whereby function and structure, are the subordinate product defined by the ontological theological perspective. The effects are far reaching for theological definitions of the essential nature of the Trinity, the believer and the church; representing a paradigmatic shift in theological understanding, affecting profoundly the nature existential Christocentric Christianity.
The ontological theology of Trinity contrasts with the relational subordination, authority-submission proponents and opponents, in substance, in relationship and in function. The recovery of apostolicity as an ontological attribute of Godhead provides significant insight and cohesion to the ontological Trinitarian proposal.
The effects upon the believer ontologically are contrasted with the religious disposition and the positional judicial approach to salvation. The prototypical shift occurs in the Person of Jesus-Christ to an existential reality originated in Trinity and replicated ontologically in the believer. The nature of humankind is thereby reinterpreted giving definition to the “spiritual man” as the sole form of legitimate existence that is biblically normalized and warranted.
The ontological primacy provides an alternate construct to the historical structural understanding of church that has not changed since the early patristic period. The proposal emerging from this exegesis is a model of church: ontological and apostolic, originated, [re]sourced, and incarnate from the nature of Trinity, demonstrating undeniably that it is impossible for the Church of divine intent to exist outside of the three persons of the Godhead. Christo-centricity restores Church to the origin, source and 'telos'. Present day observations may exemplify distanciation of contemporary expressions of church from ontological definitions. A return to source represents a theological and ecclesiastic field of renewal to perpetuate in the coming years.

Gift of Self- A New Way: To what extent does perception of St. Peter Julian Eymard's practical theology contribute to the Congregation and Aggregation of the Blessed Sacrament?

Author
Darren Maslen, SSS Rev. Fr. D.Min.
Abstract
This thesis-project explores the capacity and practice of St. Peter Julian Eymard to place the transforming activity of God into dialogue with human experience and action. It is, therefore, chiefly a study of the practical theology of this French priest (1811- 1868), often designated by the Roman Catholic Church as the 'Apostle of the Eucharist', through the lens of the notion of gift of self as transmitted by him.

The current priority given by the Eucharistic religious congregations, and lay aggregation Eymard founded to pursue investigation and study into the significance of gift of self for both him and his constituency within Church and society, gives relevance to the thesis-project at this time.

Through qualitative research, this study suggests and proposes what gift of self looks like in the understanding of members of the Congregation and Aggregation of the Blessed Sacrament, in light of the experience of undertaking faith and apostolate practices. Primarily, the thesis-project attempts to envision credible future ministry, mission and apostolate initiatives built upon the centrality of self-giving in St. Peter Julian’s expressed teaching and reflecting, sourced from the corpus of his written autographs.
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