The Travails of Dialogue

Avery Cardinal Dulles

in Church and Society

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print April 2008 | ISBN: 9780823228621
Published online March 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823236619 | DOI:
The Travails of Dialogue

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This chapter examines the difficulties of establishing a dialogue between the Catholic Church and non-Christian religions, non-Catholic Christianity, and the modern world. It notes that dialogue, properly understood, is an excellent thing, whether carried on within the Church or between the different Christian churches or different religions. But it needs to be kept in mind that authentic dialogue is premised on truth and is directed to an increment of truth. Where the conditions are not met, true dialogue cannot occur. The chapter holds that groups that call for dialogue in order to confront the Church with inexorable demands must be met with a firm refusal. It concludes that polarization is more likely to arise when the true teaching is obscured by the indulgence of contrary opinions. The hierarchical magisterium must be vigilant to prevent and correct error in matters of doctrine.

Keywords: dialogue; non-Christian religion; Christian doctrine; polarization; truth

Chapter.  5200 words. 

Subjects: Religious Studies

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