By Corneliu C. Simut
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Extra resources for A Critical Study of Hans Küng's Ecclesiology: From Traditionalism to Modernism
Second, Küng draws attention to the fact that Easter Orthodoxy and Western Protestantism have developed religious systems of their own,57 so they now have well-established theological traditions beside and outside Western Catholicism. 58 In other words, true catholicity does not mean the exclusion of Orthodox and Protestant churches from the fellowship of Catholic communities but the integration of all these three major Christian traditions as distinct, genuine, and valuable components of the one and true church of Christ around the world.
This reality points not only to the Christological, theological, and Trinitarian aspects of catholicity but also to its soteriological dimension. Thus, local churches living in history are characterized by catholicity27 if they share the same faith in the exalted Christ 28 and in God who exists as a Trinity beyond history. This, however, is not enough. In order to be truly catholic, historical churches must also share the same conviction regarding their common need for salvation. 33 In order to explain these features of catholicity, Küng uses text from Scripture that is an indication that catholicity is not only Christological, theological, Trinitarian and soteriological but also essentially scriptural: Variety within the church is not an unavoidable evil.
In other words, the church cannot be holy because of the morality of believers. For Küng, the holiness of the church should be understood theologically, Christologically,14 and pneumatologically. The church is holy because of its fundamental connection to God, in Christ, through the Spirit. 18 So, one can speak of a transcendent dimension of church holiness that is always connected to the Trinitarian being of God. Küng is convinced that the holiness of the church can be understood only in terms of the Holy Spirit.
A Critical Study of Hans Küng's Ecclesiology: From Traditionalism to Modernism by Corneliu C. Simut