Hans Küng dies on the age of 93

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Hans KungLeisure / Wikipedia

Hans Küng, a controversial Swiss Catholic theologian, professor and priest who was once censored by the late Pope John Paul II, has died at the age of 93.

Küng, who was known to be critical of Catholic theology, died on Tuesday in his home in Tübingen, according to a report by the Vatican News.

Pope emeritus Benedict XVI, who himself was the subject of criticism by Küng, published a statement quoted by the Vatican News in which he praised the late theologians for "reviving the dialogue between faith and science and with regard to scientific thought To assert reasonableness and the necessity of the right to vote in God (the question of God). "

Roger Haight, a Jesuit and scholar at Union Theological Seminary in New York, wrote Tuesday that Küng was "not a passive pietist, nor is he lacking in self-confidence."

"Like the course of emerging complexity in evolution, one can see a growing capacity in the tasks that Hans Küng took on in the course of his astonishingly productive career as a theologian, ecumenist, religionist and ultimately as the moral leader of humanity." wrote Haight.

"… the Catholic Church, Christianity, other religions and all of humanity in recognizable ways are its beneficiaries."

Küng was born on March 19, 1928 in Sursee, Switzerland. In 1954 he became a priest and then professor for Catholic theology at the University of Tübingen.

He took part in the Second Vatican Council, where he first spoke with Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who later became Pope Benedict XVI. Has been.

Küng has been the subject of much controversy in the Catholic Church because he criticized certain doctrines, in particular the concept of papal infallibility, which states that the Pope cannot err on matters of faith, as well as the obligatory spiritual celibacy.

In December 1979, not long after Pope John Paul II became head of the Catholic Church, Kung was censored by the Holy Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

"In his writings, Küng deviated from the integral truth of the Catholic faith, and therefore he can no longer be viewed as a Catholic theologian and can no longer function as such in a teaching role," declared the Congregation at the time.

Despite differences with high-ranking ecclesiastical authorities, Küng continued to write, teach, and criticize the Catholic Church while remaining a priest.

"Many Catholic theologians have no longer critically examined the infallibility ideology for fear of threatening sanctions, as in my case, and the hierarchy has tried to avoid the topic unpopular in church and society as much as possible," wrote Küng for the National Catholic Reporter in the year 2016.

"Therefore the following question is more urgent than ever: where is the church – which is still fixated on the infallibility dogma – going at the beginning of the third millennium?"

In 2017, when the beginning of the Reformation was 500 years old, Küng campaigned for reconciliation between the Catholic Church and the Protestant denominations.

This included a call to overthrow the excommunication of Protestant leaders from the Reformation period, to officially recognize Protestant services and to promote "mutual Eucharistic hospitality".

"May the pressure exerted by theologians, grassroots Christians, Christian communities and many committed men and women, help the church leadership in Rome and elsewhere, who hesitate and fear so often, not to miss this historic opportunity, but to wake up", said he wrote as quoted by The Tablet.

"In today's world, Christianity will only appear credible if it is presented in a truly reconciled diversity."

With the kind permission of Christian Post

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