In Beyond the Visible Church, theologian Florian Klug investigates the Abel motif hermeneutically throughout Christian church history. By showing how the biblical motif of Abel was read and used by representative theologians like Augustine, Bonaventure, Martin Luther, Yves Congar, and others of each epoch, Klug builds the story of the Church’s self-conception and shows how it has evolved over time. By tracing this theological and ecclesiological history and how the motif formed theologians and the Church over time, Klug shows readers a new way to conceive and understand God’s universal will for salvation.
By deconstructing and reconstructing the historical occurrences of these ideas, Klug demonstrates that the Church’s self-conception is not yet complete. This unique and ground-breaking study opens new ways forward for Catholic ecclesiology—hope for today’s universal Church.
Florian Klug, STD/STL, is a researcher and lecturer at Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, Germany.