Religion Past and Present

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Practical Theology
(3,867 words)

[German Version]

I. Definition

In the Middle Ages, it was common to call theology practica in contrast to speculativa (e.g. Thomas Aquinas, Summa theologiae I/I q. 4f.; but contrast Luther, WA.TR, 153). In German Protestantism today, the termpractical theology (Praktische Theologie) denotes a discipline within academic theology that was established in the early 19th century. Introduced encyclopaedically by F.D.E. Schleiermacher for the “proper…

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Grethlein, Christian and Meyer-Blanck, Michael, “Practical Theology”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 18 July 2024 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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