The Catholic social tradition is one of thinking and acting. Within this tradition stand the social encyclicals as unique manifestations of the Church's ethical intuition and commitment to the Gospel as lived in society. From the Heart of the Church provides a view of the social encyclical tradition within a broader understanding of Catholic theology.
In From the Heart of the Church, Judith Merkle, SNDdeN, examines the social teaching of the Church since Leo XIII from the perspective of its links to the Church and its life. While the social encyclicals of the popes since Leo XIII form a key expression of the social teachings of the Church in the last century, this book also explores the roots of these teachings in the life and theology of the Church today.
Chapters in Part One: Foundations are "Social Teaching: A Message Lived or Professed?” ”The Faith to Walk,” ”Spirituality for the World,” and ”The Church in Society.” Chapters in Part Two: The Catholic Social Tradition are ”Social Teaching Before Vatican II,” ”Social Teaching of John XXIII and Paul VI,” ”Political Theology,” ”Liberation Theology,” ”Social Catholicism After Vatican II,” and "Social Teaching of John Paul II.” Part Three: The Future of the Catholic Social Tradition includes ”Communities Formed in the Heart of the Church: A Thought Experiment.”
Judith A. Merkle, SNDdeN, PhD, is associate professor of religious studies at Niagara University, New York. She writes and lectures in the area of Church and society, religious life, and Christian ethics. She is the author of Committed by Choice and A Different Touch: A Study of Vows in Religious Life published by Liturgical Press.