Sacramentum Mundi Online

Get access Subject: Religious Studies

Edited by: Karl Rahner with Cornelius Ernst and Kevin Smyth.
Advisor for the online edition: Karen Kilby, Durham University

Sacramentum Mundi Online is the online edition of the famous six volume English reference work in Catholic Theology, edited (in 1968-1970) by Karl Rahner, one of the main Catholic theologians of the 20th century. Sacramentum Mundi: An Encyclopedia of Theology was originally published by Herder Verlag, and is now available online at Brill.

For more information: Brill.com

Sacramentals

(2,313 words)

Author(s): Magnus Löhrer
1. Concept and regulations of canon law. Though the magisterium has paid little attention to the sacramentais (except insofar as the ceremonies of the Church are defended in general, e.g., D 665, 856, 943, 954, 965 and Vatican II, Sacrosanctum Concilium [on the liturgy], arts. 60ff.), the Code of Canon Law reflects the practice and the theology of the sacramentals as hitherto in vogue. They must now be examined in the light of the Constitution on the Liturgy and the questions posed by present-day theology, dogmatic and pastoral. a) Notion. According to Sacrosanctum Concilium, art. 60, t…

Sacraments - Mystery Theology

(1,666 words)

Author(s): Burkhard Neunheuser
Part of Sacraments: 1. The Sacraments in General 2. Mystery Theology Mystery theology is the attempt at a synthesis of all the doctrines of faith from the point of view of the mysterium, i.e., of God’s action by which he has effected our salvation in Christ and which is transmitted to us in the Church, particularly in its sacraments and liturgical celebrations. The initiator of this synthesis in contemporary theology was Odo Casei, a monk of Maria Laach, who died in 1948. At first he met with much opposition, but in the long r…

Sacraments - The Sacraments in General

(5,259 words)

Author(s): Raphael Schulte
Part of Sacraments: 1. The Sacraments in General 2. Mystery Theology A. Introduction and Historical Survey The sacraments, in the sense here understood, and as defined in the theology of the Church, are the seven vital actions of the Church in its liturgy which are efficacious for salvation: Eucharist, baptism, confirmation, holy orders, matrimony and the anointing of the sick. The theology of the sacraments, which began in Scripture, was constantly developed in the course of history and was mainly stimulated b…

Sacred Times and Places

(1,230 words)

Author(s): Eberhard Simons
1. History of religions. The misunderstanding of the holy and also of everything to do with the spirit meant for rationalism and inferior types of Idealism that the divine mdash if spoken of at all — was as an idea beyond the realm of the concrete human history and that its divinity consisted precisely in being always and everywhere unrelated to earthly reality. In contrast to this position the religions down through the history of man have, in spite of all their differences in detail, been unanimo…

Sacrifice - Concept of Sacrifice

(2,023 words)

Author(s): Otto Semmelroth
Part of Sacrifice: 1. Concept of Sacrifice 2. Substitution (Representation) 3. Sacrifice of Christ In the technical sense, sacrifice designates the attitude of man before God. The significance is twofold. Sacrifice is the expression of man’s duty of total dedication to God, but it is only possible with regard to God. And again, sacrifice makes the special relationship of man to God visible in a way which excludes any one-sided humanization or secularization of the notion of God. While it is true that sacrific…

Sacrifice - Sacrifice of Christ

(1,812 words)

Author(s): Otto Semmelroth
Part of Sacrifice: 1. Concept of Sacrifice 2. Substitution (Representation) 3. Sacrifice of Christ 1. That Christ redeemed us through a sacrifice is most explicitly attested in the NT in the Letter to the Hebrews. Here its cultic sense is characterized as an expiatory sacrifice, as also appears from the description of the life and death of Christ as obedience to the Father and from the fact that Christ gave his life for the sins of men. In the other parts of the NT the sacrifice of Christ appears in the sayin…

Sacrifice - Substitution (Representation)

(1,021 words)

Author(s): Leo Scheffczyk
Part of Sacrifice: 1. Concept of Sacrifice 2. Substitution (Representation) 3. Sacrifice of Christ This notion derives in part from juris- prudence, where substitution (“proxy”) means acting in another’s stead. Reflection on this reality in human law shows that it has metaphysical implications which shed light on the primal religious value of the notion. Comparative religion shows that the idea of substitution is familiar not only at the (later) stage of magic (primitive totemism) but also in the sacrificial …

Saints - Canonization

(1,473 words)

Author(s): Paolo Molinari
Part of Saints: 1. History of Saints 2. Veneration of Saints 3. Canonization 4. Hagiography 1. History of canonisation. The certainty that by dying For Christ the martyrs had entered into the glory of God, and the conviction of the power of their intercession now that they were united with Christ led the early Church to venerate the martyrs, to beg their intercession, and to commemorate them in the sacrifice of the Mass. For the same reasons, this cult was extended to “confessors” (those who had suffered for the …

Saints - Hagiography

(1,869 words)

Author(s): Ekkart Sauser
Part of Saints: 1. History of Saints 2. Veneration of Saints 3. Canonization 4. Hagiography 1 . Definition and theological relevance. In general, hagiography is the story of the lives of the saints. In the stricter scientific sense it is the critical discussion of the hagiographical tradition, of the veneration and the history of the saints (see Saints I, II). The Church sees itself presented in the work of the saints. “Hagiography is a major realm of the Church’s self-presentation in literature” (B. Kötting in LTK, IV, col. 1316). Christ is seen there as he who lives on and con…

Saints - History of Saints

(3,170 words)

Author(s): Jörg Splett
Part of Saints: 1. History of Saints 2. Veneration of Saints 3. Canonization 4. Hagiography 1. In the history of religions. Among those forms in which the holy can be present, man has a central place: men in general, men in special circumstances or situations (children, the dying), men in special offices and functions (priest, prophet, warrior, king), and finally any individual, the saint, in whom the divine power is experienced in some special way (especially through miracles). This presence of divine power seems …

Saints - Veneration of Saints

(2,349 words)

Author(s): Ernst Niermann
Part of Saints: 1. History of Saints 2. Veneration of Saints 3. Canonization 4. Hagiography The veneration of the saints is an element of Church spirituality which can be shown to be present in the whole of tradition. At one time it dominated the liturgy and the practices of the faithful so strongly that it was regarded as a hall-mark of Catholic piety. 1. The magisterium of the Church expressly approved the practice at Trent, seeking both to explain itself to the Reformers and to eliminate abuses and excesses on the Catholic side. ( D 984–8). The doctrine of the Council is not given as …

Salvation - Biblical Concept

(1,488 words)

Author(s): Ingrid Maisch
Part of Salvation: 1. Universal Salvific Will 2. Biblical Concept 3. History of Salvation (“Salvation History”) 4. Theology 1 . The Hebrew expressions corresponding to the English word “salvation” show that the ОТ concept of salvation had its roots in concrete experiences and situations. Salva- tion for the psalmist is deliverance from mortal danger, healing in sickness, liberation from captivity, ransom from slavery, help in a law-suit, victory in battle, peace after political negotiations (Ps 7:11; 18:28; 22:22…

Salvation - History of Salvation (“Salvation History”)

(11,892 words)

Author(s): Klaus Berger | Adolf Darlap | Karl Rahner
Part of Salvation: 1. Universal Salvific Will 2. Biblical Concept 3. History of Salvation (“Salvation History”) 4. Theology A. Theological Analysis 1. Biblical approach: The genesis of “history of salvation” as a scriptural concept. a) An exegetical investigation of the concept of “history of salvation” must examine the relationship of a purely political interpretation of events to a theological one, in the various biblical traditions. No event is “chemically pure”, but presents itself with various meanings. Since this is so, in…

Salvation - Theology

(10,422 words)

Author(s): Karl Rahner | Franz Lakner
Part of Salvation: 1. Universal Salvific Will 2. Biblical Concept 3. History of Salvation (“Salvation History”) 4. Theology A. Redemption 1. The fundamental problem, a) Redemption objectively presupposes a need of redemption and subjectively the admission (the acceptance) by man of his need. The startingpoint must therefore always be the question whether there is such a need of salvation, what constitutes it and how man can be brought to take an honest attitude to this fundamental fact of existence. (i) In the first place this need for deliverance signifies the condition i…

Salvation - Universal Salvific Will

(3,234 words)

Author(s): Karl Rahner
Part of Salvation: 1. Universal Salvific Will 2. Biblical Concept 3. History of Salvation (“Salvation History”) 4. Theology 1, Introduction. The Christian doctrine of God, his infinite goodness and holiness (D 1782f.) and that of the total origin of all other reality from God by creation imply the fundamental Christian conviction that in itself the whole of reality is (objectively) “good”, i.e., that it must be positively accepted as meaningful and worthy of love, in that fundamental act of our existence (in knowledge and lo…

Scandal

(3,118 words)

Author(s): Waldemar Molinski
1. The notion of scandal. a) Functional definition. The personal development of the individual, like the cultural evolution of groups, is affected both by endogenous impulses, like creative ideas and the force they generate, and by exegenous impact, such as example and scandal. So the development of spiritual existence and culture is hindered not only by innate incapacity or failure but also by faulty upbringing and education and by scandals. Scandal, then, plays an ambivalent psychological and social role which religion and morality must take into account. We speak of scandal whe…

Scepticism

(1,160 words)

Author(s): Werner Post
1. Concept. The term “scepticism” in its classical sense comes from σϰέπτομαι, “to inspect”. One may distinguish between total (radical, absolute) scepticism and partial (moderate, relative) scepticism, the latter appearing as religious, ethical, aesthetic, etc., scepticism; there is also methodical scepticism or methodical doubt. 2. History. A partial scepticism appears in the West as early as the pre-Socratic philosophers (Xenophanes, Parmenides) and was built up to one of its first high-points by the Sophists, as a criticism of the naiv…

Schism - Concept of Schism

(1,329 words)

Author(s): Christophe Dumont
Part of Schism: 1. Concept of Schism 2. History of Schism 3. Eastern Schism 4. Western Schism The word “schism” means “a deliberate separation from ecclesiastical communion; it is also the state of being separated, or the Christian group which is in such a state. The schismatic is one who causes schism, who favours or bears responsibility for it, or who simply adheres to it through conviction or in fact” (Y. Congar). In classical Greek, σχίσμα means a crack or tear. St. Paul uses it in a moral sense for differences of opinion or of inclination which endanger the pea…

Schism - Eastern Schism

(3,975 words)

Author(s): Francis Dvornik
Part of Schism: 1. Concept of Schism 2. History of Schism 3. Eastern Schism 4. Western Schism Political events and policies did more to bring, about the Eastern Schism than the dogmatic differences to which it is often attributed. The roots of the process must be sought in the political ideology of the early Christian Church. The first political philosophers of Christianity, Clement of Alexandria and Eusebius of Caesaraea, adapted the political outlook of Hellenism, the only system then in existence, to the doct…

Schism - History of Schism

(2,432 words)

Author(s): Victor Conɀemius
Part of Schism: 1. Concept of Schism 2. History of Schism 3. Eastern Schism 4. Western Schism 1. General. The NT speaks of divisions in the local Churches in consequence of differences in the explanation and assimilation of the apostolic kerygma (1 Cor 11:9; Gal 5:19; Rom 16:17). They endanger the fellowship ( koinonia) of the Church as established by Christ (one God,· one Lord, one Spirit, 1 Cor 12:4-6; one gospel, 1 Cor 1:10-13; Gal 1:6-9; one baptism and one bread, 1 Cor 12:13; 10:17; Gal 3:27). Nothing is known of a division which led to a bre…

Schism - Western Schism

(1,905 words)

Author(s): Johann Baptist Villiger
Part of Schism: 1. Concept of Schism 2. History of Schism 3. Eastern Schism 4. Western Schism The period from 1378 to 1417 (or 1449) is known in Church history as the great Western Schism. It was essentially a schism in the papacy, involving the simultaneous claim to and actual exercise of supreme Church authority by two and later three Popes. The Church has never officially pronounced on the question which of the two (or three) papal successions was the legitimate one. Nor did the choice of the papal name of Jo…

Scholasticism - Evolution

(11,955 words)

Author(s): Zoltan Alszeghy | Richard Heinzmann | Elisabeth Gössmann | Reinhold Weier | Otto Muck
Part of Scholasticism: 1. Nature and Approaches 2. Evolution A. Pre-Scholasticism Pre-scholasticism is the term used to describe the theology and philosophy of the 7th to the 11th century, to distinguish it from the preceding patristic theology (see Patrology II, III) and the subsequent period of early scholasticism. A number of spiritual trends are combined, of which the common element may be said to be the effort to make use of an imperfectly mastered classical culture in the understanding of faith, while trying to do justice to the special nature of religious knowledge. 1. In most of…

Scholasticism - Nature and Approaches

(3,145 words)

Author(s): Eberhard Simons
Part of Scholasticism: 1. Nature and Approaches 2. Evolution Scholasticism is a philosophy, theology and jurisprudence which in the Middle Ages stood for all known science. From the 7th century on, scholasticism developed through the stages of pre-scholasticism and early scholasticism to the classical period of the 12th and 13th centuries, setting up then a tradition lasting for seven hundred years, down to the present day. Post-classical or later scholasticism again reached high-points in Baroque schola…

Science - General

(5,325 words)

Author(s): Alois Haider | Max Müller
Part of Science: 1. General 2. Theory of Science 3. Science and Theology 1. General problems of definition. There are difficulties about establishing a precise definition of the term “science”. The definition itself has to be established scientifically. Moreover, it has to cover not just “science as such”, in the singular, but also the various different branches of science. Hence the tendency to try to derive the common features of the various branches of science from one particular science selected as prototype…

Science - Science and Theology

(2,326 words)

Author(s): Gernot Eder
Part of Science: 1. General 2. Theory of Science 3. Science and Theology The subject-matter of science is virtually unrestricted, in the region of the observable. But it is mainly concerned with systems (the atom, the solar system, the biosphere, etc.) which are more or less isolated from outside interference. The framework of its method is functional causality, that is, the relation of cause and effect is expressed as the regular connection between successive states of an isolated system (see Matter II). The features which characterize a system are restricted to measurable…

Science - Theory of Science

(2,671 words)

Author(s): Otto Muck
Part of Science: 1. General 2. Theory of Science 3. Science and Theology Reflection on science has always formed part of philosophy. It is only in modern times, and especially since Kant, that light on the specific character of human cognition has been looked for from the logical analysis of science. For Kant, this raised the question of the possibility of synthetic a priori judgments, which he regarded as an in-dispensable basis of the universal statements of natural laws made by mathematical natural science; that these are justified is placed beyond all d…

Scotism

(1,675 words)

Author(s): Carlo Balić
Scotism is the term applied either to the doctrine of Duns Scotus or of his school. 1. Origin. The controversy among Aristotelians was at its height during the teaching career of Duns Scotus ( c. 1300), with the ancient Franciscan school (St. Bonaventure etc.) of the Augustinian type opposed to the Thomistic (see Scholasticism II C). On 7 March 1277 the Bishop of Paris, Stephen, along with the University, had condemned 219 philosophical theses, including some of St. Thomas’s. Archbishop Kilwardby, O. P., declared some theses of St. Thomas to be da…

Scripture and Tradition

(2,946 words)

Author(s): Karl Rahner
A. Introduction 1. The question of the relationship between Scripture and tradition seemed to have been cleared up for Catholic theology by the declaration of the Council of Trent ( D 783 f.), which affirmed that the pure gospel was Contained and handed on “in libris scriptis et sine scripto traditionibus”, and that both modes of the presence of revelation were to be greeted “pari pietatis affectu ac reverentia". tia”. (This was repeated by Vatican II, Dei Verbum, art. 9, though “Sacra Traditio” was substituted for “traditiones’’.) In post-Tridentine times, the declaration of Tren…

Sects, Christian

(2,730 words)

Author(s): Johannes Gründler
This article simply aims at listing the minor divisions attached in one way or another to the Christian Churches. The word “sect” is not used (as so often) in a disparaging sense, but simply to exemplify groupings which either arrived late on the scene, or are of small numerical size, or are only loosely attached to Christianity in its orthodox forms. For a discussion of the theological interest of the latter, see Protestantism I, ad fin. A. Churches and Sects in the East See Eastern Churches D. B. Churches and Sects in the West (For the general historical background, see Reformation.) 1. Mennon…

Secular Institutes

(1,941 words)

Author(s): Jean Beyer
The “secular institutes” ( instituta saecularia), as defined by Pius Xll in the Apostolic Constitution Provida Mater Ecclesia of 2 February 1947 ( AAS 39 [1947], pp. 114-24), are the third public state of perfection in the Church, consisting of societies of priests and laity. Their members consecrate themselves to God by binding themselves to perfect charity through the observation of the three evangelical counsels. The object is the exercise of a fruitful apostolate in the world. There are three types of such institu…

Secularization - Concept

(4,989 words)

Author(s): Albert Keller
Part of Secularization: 1. Concept 2. Laicism A. Defining the Notion “Secularization” comes from the Latin saecularis, meaning “worldly”, “temporal” or “age-old”, and forms a group with “secularity” and “secularism”. Since all these words indicate a theory or process whereby things or persons are assigned to the realm of the world, they are often used indifferently. But it is useful and now becoming more common to distinguish them. (i) Secularization has mostly been used for the confiscation of Church property …

Secularization - Laicism

(1,292 words)

Author(s): Ernst Niermann
Part of Secularization: 1. Concept 2. Laicism The term “laicism” was coined in France during the struggle for spiritual power under the Third Republic and introduces the problems of the “Church and the World” as they were understood in the 18th and 19th centuries. It is only against this historical background that the attitude of laicism to the relationship of Church and State, for instance, can be properly understood. Laicizing thought was given its classical form in France, though it also played an important role in other countries down to the present century. The spiritual roots of l…

Sermon on the Mount

(1,367 words)

Author(s): Jacques Dupont
1. St. Matthew. The Sermon on the Mount, Mt 5–7, is the first and most important of the discourses of Jesus which mark this gospel. It gives a general picture of the “justice” which should characterize the disciples of Jesus and give them access to the Kingdom of God. In the introduction, the beatitudes (5:3–12) constitute a first presentation of the conditions to be fulfilled by the disciples to possess the Kingdom of God. The metaphors of salt and light (vv. 13–16) insist on the good example whi…

Sex - Sexual Education

(1,739 words)

Author(s): Johannes Gründel
Part of Sex: 1. Sexuality 2. Sexual Education 3. Sexual Morality 1. Its nature and problems, a) Sexual education can be fruitfully given only in a general framework of moral and personal education. It can neither be value-free nor independent of a determinate view of life, and it pre-supposes a right attitude to human sexuality. In this there is question, not so much of a moralizing enunciation of the relevant norms, but rather of every form of assistance needed by young people in process of coming to maturity…

Sex - Sexuality

(3,392 words)

Author(s): Johannes Gründel
Part of Sex: 1. Sexuality 2. Sexual Education 3. Sexual Morality For centuries the prevailing theological teaching attributed no more than a functional character to human sexuality; corresponding to the sexuality of the animal world, it was evaluated chiefly or entirely from the point of view of procreation (see Birth Control). On the basis of an anthropology which is concerned with the totality of the person, new points of view for the understanding and evaluation of sexuality present themselves nowadays, leading to changes of emphasis and add…

Sex - Sexual Morality

(5,921 words)

Author(s): Johannes Gründel
Part of Sex: 1. Sexuality 2. Sexual Education 3. Sexual Morality Sexual morality is to be regarded as part of Christian ethics and moral theology; it attempts to explain the purpose and task of human sexuality as well as the moral significence of interpersonal relations, insofar as they affect man in his sexual nature and are of an erotic and sexual character. Human sexuality, cannot, however, be rightly explained in terms of finality, but rather from a personal evaluation of man and his relationships. The…
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