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Exploring Catholic Theology: Essays on God, Liturgy, and Evangelization

ISBN: 9781493404131
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Robert Barron is one of the Catholic Church’s premier theologians and author of the influential The Priority of Christ. In this volume, Barron sets forth a thoroughgoing vision for an evangelical Catholic theology that is steeped in Tradition and engaged with the contemporary world.

Striking a balance between academic rigor and accessibility, the book covers issues of perennial interest in the twenty-first century Church: who God is, how to rightly worship him, and how his followers engage contemporary culture. Topics include the doctrine of God, Catholic theology, philosophy, liturgy, and evangelizing the culture. This work will be of special interest to readers concerned about the so-called “new atheism.”

In the Verbum edition, this volume is enhanced by amazing functionality. Important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Perform powerful searches to find exactly what you’re looking for. Take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Verbum Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.

Interested in more Catholic theology? Check out Contemporary Catholic Theology: A Reader.

Key Features

  • Presents an evangelical Catholic theology for the twenty-first century Church
  • Explores how the Church relates to new atheism
  • Covers important issues for the contemporary Church


  • Doctrine of God
    • Augustine’s Questions: Why the Augustinian Theology of God Matters Today
    • Thomas Aquinas and Why the Atheists Are Right
    • The Metaphysics of Coinherence: A Mediation on the Essence of the Christian Message
    • The Trinity on Display in the Economy of Salvation: An Irenaean Meditation
  • Theology and Philosophy
    • To See According to the Icon of Jesus Christ: Reflections on the Catholic Intellectual Tradition
    • A Tale of Two Cardinals: Avery Dulles’s Creative Engagement with the Thought of John Henry Newman
    • John Henry Newman among the Postmoderns
    • Biblical Interpretation and Theology: A Meditation on Irenaeus, Modernity, and Vatican II
  • Liturgy and Eucharist
    • The Eucharist as the Telos of the Law in the Writings of Thomas Aquinas
    • The Liturgical Self: An Exploration of Christian Anthropology in Light of the Liturgy
    • The Eucharist: Sacred Banquet, Sacrifice, Real Presence
  • A New Evangelization,
    • Why Bernard Lonergan Matters for Pastoral People
    • Announcing the Lordship of Jesus Christ: The Evangelical Task within Contemporary Culture
    • From Correlation to Assimilation: A New Model for the Church-Culture Dialogue
    • To Evangelize the Culture

Praise for the Print Edition

Today the Western Church has to proclaim the gospel in a culture that says it has outgrown religion, Christianity in particular. In this new and perilous situation, we have no more honest and reliable guide than Fr. Barron. He shows us how to remember and teach the truths about God and ourselves that our culture once knew but is now trying to forget–and trying to tempt the Church also to forget.

—Bruce D. Marshall, Lehman Professor of Christian Doctrine, Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University

An exceptionally readable introduction to modern theology. Exploring Catholic Theology could be read for pleasure and for profit by undergraduate students, professors, pastors, and lay parish leaders. Barron is recreating apologetics at a more imaginative and challenging level. Everyone who meditates on this book will discover something new about how to witness to the truth of Christianity in a postmodern culture.

Francesca Murphy, professor of systematic theology, University of Notre Dame

In this book, Fr. Barron models the kind of pastoral theology and ressourcement envisioned by Vatican II. His is a theology founded on Scripture, Tradition, and liturgy–but with windows open onto the world, engaging pop culture and high culture, politics and poetics, evangelicals and postmoderns, the new atheism and the old. Highly recommended, especially for pastors, scholars, teachers, and seminarians.

Scott Hahn, William & Lois McEssy Distinguished Professor of Biblical Theology and the New Evangelization, Mundelein Seminary

Product Details

  • Title: Exploring Catholic Theology: Essays on God, Liturgy, and Evangelization
  • Author: Robert Barron
  • Publisher: Baker Academic
  • Publication Date: 2015
  • Pages: 272
  • Christian Group: Catholic
  • Resource Type: Monograph
  • Topic: Theology

About the Author

Robert Barron is a priest in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago and the rector/president of Mundelein Seminary at the University of St. Mary of the Lake. He is the author of Bridging the Great Divide: Musings of a Post-Liberal, Post-Conservative, Evangelical Catholic, The Strangest Way: Walking the Christian Path, and Heaven in Stone and Glass.

Sample Pages from the Print Edition

Top Highlights

“Augustine found a truth in which he could rest, a truth that, he was convinced, had set him free. And this was none other than the conviction that ultimate reality is the Trinitarian God revealed in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.” (Page 3)

“But the point is this: to discover what a society worships is to discover what it values most highly, seeks to imitate, and considers ontologically basic.” (Page 13)

“On Aristotle’s reading, for example, substance comes first, since substance coincides with the basic category of being, and relationships, derivative of substance, come definitively second. But in light of the Trinitarian formula, we see something completely different: at the most fundamental level of existence, substance and relationship utterly coincide. To be is to be in rapport with another, for the Father is the Father only in relation to the Son, the Son is the Son only in relation to the Father, and the Holy Spirit is nothing but the relation between the Father and the Son.” (Page 11)

“God is therefore properly discovered as the deepest ground of the creature’s ontological identity. Thomas Merton was entirely in a Thomist frame of mind when he said that contemplative prayer is finding that place in you where you are here and now being created by God.” (Page 24)

“The young Augustine was devoted to roughly the same idea of God that adepts of the New Age find amenable today: a notion of God as impersonal, intimately tied to the material world, and manipulable through the human will.” (Page 5)


4 ratings

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  1. Glenn Peach

    Glenn Peach


  2. Br Damien-Joseph OSB
    Really enjoying this book.
  3. Eric Hillegas

    Eric Hillegas


  4. Anthony Sims

    Anthony Sims