NBF

Recently a paper I wrote was accepted for publication at New Blackfriars Review. (A link can be found here).

The piece, (which I am in fact not entirely happy with), covers material that has occupied by thoughts for some time namely, the debates surrounding nature and grace that have been raging since the publication of Henri de Lubac’s Surnaturel thesis in 1946.

The heat in this debate seems to have died down in recent years, and the arguments advanced on both sides are no longer met with accusations of heresy. The papacies of both John Paul II and Benedict XVI seem to have solidified de Lubac’s position to be at least within the bounds of orthodoxy.

The concern that has been raised most recently is that some of the rigor in this debate has been lost. Proponents of de Lubac’s thesis have been accused of taking a triumphalistic line and no longer engaging with the substance of alternative and competing arguments as they emerge from the camps of those professing a Thomism-of-Strict-Observance. My argument, I am somewhat embarrassed to say, seems to take a fairly triumphalistic tone. It does not engage with the recent scholarship in this area (namely the works of Lawrence Feingold and Steven A. Long), but really it never had any pretensions to. (I am not 100% convinced that my entry into this discussion will really add much anyway).

Instead, what I was seeking to do was to put out a paper that would be something of a catalyst for discussion around how Catholics engage in popular debate around contentious social issues. To that end, I hope that it hits home.

I’d be interested to know if you have any thoughts on this.