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Liberation Theology: An Emerging School

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 February 2009

Monika K. H. Hellwig
Affiliation:
Theology Dept Georgetown UniversityWashington D.C. 20057

Extract

Liberation Theology, a term that may still be quite new to many readers, represents a movement in theology that began to shape itself clearly in Latin America in the year 1970. Five international, but predominantly Latin American, conferences of theologians and biblical scholars in that year established the basic vocabulary, the key questions, the general direction of inquiry, and some agreed assumptions concerning method. These conferences, like the authors who subsequently emerged as leading spokesmen, were ecumenical but with a strong concentration of Roman Catholic scholars and churchmen.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Scottish Journal of Theology Ltd 1977

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References

page 137 note 1 These were: predominantly Catholic supranational theological conferences in Bogota in March and July of 1970; a biblical scholars' conference in Buenos Aires in July of the same year; an ecumenical pastoral and theological congress in Buenos Aires in August; and an inter-continental, ecumenical conference in Mexico in October. What was particularly significant about these conferences was the wide dissemination of the papers that were read, and the immediate widespread interest these papers aroused.

page 138 note 1 The evolution of thought in these official statements is traced and documented with great care in Liberation, Development and Salvation (ch. 7), by Laurentin, René (Maryknoll, N.Y.: Orbis Books, 1972)Google Scholar, revised version of the original French title, Déloppement et Salut, first published 1969.

page 140 note 1 All available in Medellín: conclusiones, published by C.E.L.A.M. from Bogota, Colombia, 1971, as a paperback book—now also available in English and French translations.

page 140 note 2 Liberación, Opción de la Iglesia en la decada del 70, by Gutierrez, G. et al. , and Aportes para la Liberación, by Hernandez, J. A. et al. Both from: Bogota: Presencia, 1970Google Scholar. They are no longer easily available, but the papers are constantly quoted in Opresión-Liberación, by Assmann, Hugo (Montevideo: Biblioteca Mayor, 1971)Google Scholar.

page 141 note 1 A clear explanation is given in A Theology of Liberation (ch. 9), by Gutierrez, Gustavo (Maryknoll, N.Y.: Orbis Books, 1973; London: S.C.M. Press, 1974).Google Scholar

page 143 note 1 ‘The Future in the Memory of Suffering’, in Church and World: The God Question (Concilium, Vol. 8, no. 6) (New York: Herder, 1972).Google Scholar

page 144 note 1 Perhaps most clearly explained by Gutierrez, G. in ‘Liberation, Theology and Proclamation’, The Mystical and Political Dimensions of the Christian Faith, ed. Geffré, Claude and Gutierrez, G. (Concilium, Vol. 6, no. 10) (New York: Herder, 1973).Google Scholar

page 145 note 1 Explicitly, the distinction is most clearly made by Bonino, Jose Miguez, Doing Theology in a Revolutionary Situation (ch. 5) (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1975)Google Scholar. (Also published in London by S.P.C.K., 1975, under the title, Revolutionary Theology Comes of Age.)

page 145 note 2 ibid.

page 147 note 1 Vide: G. Gutierrez, op. cit., p. 59, for brief, clear exposition and footnote listing Spanish language texts relevant to the question.

page 148 note 1 For the formulation of a definition of salvation as here given, the author is indebted to an unpublished paper of Dr Leroy Friezen, working in the occupied West Bank territory of the Holy Land for the Mennonite Central Committee.

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