Two great theologians endeavor to recover the centrality of Marian doctrine and devotion for the contemporary Church, offering a spiritually rich approach to Mariology that brings into new relief the Marian contours of ecclesial faith. Ratzinger and von Balthasar show that Mary is both the embodiment of the Church, and the mother who cooperates in giving birth to the Church in the souls of believers.
At once profound and yet readily accessible, Mary: The Church at the Source offers a theologically balanced and biblically grounded presentation of traditional and contemporary thought on Marian doctrine and spirituality.
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Hans Urs von Balthasar (1905–1988) was a Swiss theologian, widely considered to be one of the most important Catholic intellectuals and theological writers of the twentieth century. Incredibly prolific and diverse, he wrote over one hundred books and hundreds of articles. He was nominated to be a cardinal of the Catholic Church, but died two days before his ceremony.
Joseph Ratzinger is one of the most revered Catholic prelates, scholars, theologians, teachers, and authors of our time. He has spoken on many crucial subjects, including sexual consumerism, roles of men and women today, marriage, the priesthood, and the future of the world. On June 29, 1951, Joseph Ratzinger was ordained to the priesthood in the Cathedral of Freising on the Feast of Saints Peter and Paul. He also received his doctorate in theology in 1953 from the University of Munich. Starting in 1959, Ratzinger taught theology at the University of Bonn.
After many years of teaching at several German universities, Ratzinger was appointed by Pope Paul VI as Archbishop of Munich and Freising in March 1977, and was elevated to cardinal in June 1977. In November 1981, Ratzinger was summoned by Pope John Paul II to Rome, where he was named Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, President of the Pontifical Biblical Commission, and President of the International Theological Commission.
On April 19, 2005, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was elected to be the 265th pope. He took the name Benedict XVI, after St. Benedict of Nursia. As pope, he received worldwide respect and was a spiritual influence to Christians and non-Christians alike. In 2013, he resigned the papacy, becoming the first pope to do so in since the fifteenth century. He retired to a monastery in the Vatican Gardens, where he continues to study and write.