The contributors to this volume propose constructive directions for Christian theology on the eve of the 21st century. Focusing on the imperative for dialogue that is deeply felt in contemporary theology, these original essays chart new ground in the constructive dialogue of theology with the whole Christian community, with its environing cultures, and with other religious traditions. The book's topical focus is suggested by the work of George A.Lindbeck, to whom it is dedicated. Lindbeck has contributed substantially to Christian theological dialogue in all three areas, and the essays engage in different ways the themes and issues raised by his proposals. The essays in Part One deal with the question of how the present task of theology should be conceived, given a context in which it is especially important to clarify the relationship between what is distinctive to Christianity and the wider array of human belief and practice. Contributors to this section include David H.Kelsey, David Tracy, and Bruce D.Marshall. In Part Two, the essays by David B.Burrell, C.S.C.Nicholas Lash, and the late Hans W.Frei examine historical and contemporary cases of the dialogue between theology and the wider culture in which theology is done.
Michael Root and S.W.Sykes propose ways of handling crucial problems in the current dialogue between divided Christian communities. Peter Ochs and J.A.DiNoia, OP, attend from the Jewish and christian sides respectively, to issues central to dialogue between Christianity and other religious traditions. The volume concludes with an epilogue by Hans W.Frei in whcih Lindbeck's lifelong colleague offers his own reflections on Lindbeck's work and on their theological friendship.