Joseph Ratzinger's Understanding of Freedom

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Peter John McGregor


The concept of ‘freedom’ is one of the ‘cardinal points’ of the theology of Joseph Ratzinger/Pope Benedict XVI.  Beginning with what he considers to be some false understandings of freedom, and the contemporary ‘loss of faith’ in freedom, we examine his critique of how the idea of freedom is presented in Gaudium et Spes.  Following this, we attempt to demonstrate that Ratzinger has developed a theology of the freedom of God, as well as an anthropology of human freedom, which find their consummation in a Christology of the freedom of Jesus.  We are called to participate in this freedom, and this participation constitutes our divinisation.  The climax of our participation in this freedom comes about through our communion with Christ in the Eucharist.

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Author Biography

Peter John McGregor, Australian Catholic University

Doctoral Student in Theology
School of Theology
Faculty of Theology and Philosophy