John Courtney Murray, SJ (1904-1967), is most renowned for his ethical writings, which distinguish between the secular and the sacred, and for his defense of civil religious freedom based on natural law philosophy. His later theological writings, however, in which he sought to reintegrate the temporal and the spiritual, civil society and the church, philosophy and theology, have been largely ignored. In this new collection of essayspreviously scattered among various periodicals over the course of thirty yearsJ. Leon Hooper, S.J., presents a selection of Murray's theological writings that not only outlines and highlights the integrity of Murray's moves towards a public theological discourse but also contributes to the ongoing post-conciliar task of integrating the secular and the sacred, thereby invigorating American public conversation today.
In his editorial introductions, Hooper furthers Murray scholarship by identifying two distinct links between Murray's well known non-theological writings and the explicitly theological work that also spans his public life. Common to both areas are Murray's deepening appreciation of the historicity of all human knowing and the cognitional operations that the human person brings to both sacred and profane living.
By making available Murray's explicitly theological and Christian humanism writings, this collection further enriches American ethical, theological and philosophical debate.
About the Author
John Courtney Murray, one of the century's foremost theologians, was the author of We Hold These Truths (Sheed & Ward, 1960), The Problem of God, Yesterday and Today (Yale University Press, 1964), and The Problem of Religious Freedom (The Newman Press, 1965).
J. Leon Hooper, SJ, is a senior research fellow at Woodstock Theological Center, Georgetown University. He is the editor of Religious Liberty: Catholic Struggles with Pluralism (Westminster/John Knox Press, 1993) and author of The Ethics of Discourse: The Social Philosophy of John Courtney Murray (Georgetown University Press, 1986).