John Paul II--philosopher-poet-Pope--forged a grand new synthesis unmatched
since Thomas Aquinasí Summa. It is timely, then, to ask how and why John
Paulís vision of a new evangelization of culture may impact the Church and the
world. A scholar whose many encyclicals sought to make religion accessible and
relevant to the modern world, John Paul combined the moral courage of the
Russian Nobel-winning author Aleksandr I. Solzhenitsyn with a major French
Catholic philosopher Jacques Maritainís personalism that emphasized human
dignity and universal spiritual yearnings, bridging East and West. Personal
experience as a witness to Nazi and communist dictatorships in his native Poland
sharpened his vision and prayer life, and contributed to his formation and
pastoral calling rooted in Christian humanism. But it was his friendly demeanor,
approachable personality, openness to all seekers, and bearings under physical
afflictions that appealed to all and made John Paul II everyoneís Pope across
geographical and cultural divides, prompting the call for his sainthood ("santo
subito"). The question, thus, arises: What are the prospects for John Paulís
quest for the evangelization of culture and the future of religion in a world
that embraces a commercial ethos with highly atomized, self-referential
individuals in a postmodern global society in search of common bonds? Can such a
world experience re-enchantment by rediscovering St. Paulís cardinal
virtues--faith, hope, and love--as the road energized by Christís promise of
grace, mercy, and redemption?
THE FUTURE OF RELIGION:
Re-Enchantment of the World?
1, 2017. Send
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