‘Communication, Communion and Conflict in the Theologies of Gregory Baum and Patrick Granfield’

This is the abstract of the dissertation which I submitted for my Ph.D. in systematic theology from The Catholic University of America. It examines the understandings of the church in the writings of two contemporary North American Roman Catholic theologians, Gregory Baum (b. 1923) and Fr. Patrick Granfield, OSB (1930-2014). The work analyzes the complementary scholarship of Baum and Granfield with respect to the understanding of the church as communion as it emerged in the teaching of the Second Vatican Council of the 1960s and their related efforts to encourage fresh examinations of the church’s engagement with the world in dialogue and action. I also analyze their proposals for the updating of the Catholic Church’s internal governing structures in ways which reflect that ecclesiology of communion. articulated by the Council.

‘Apostolicity and Episkopé in U.S. Ecumenical Dialogue’

In this essay, which won the peer-reviewed 2008 Ecumenism Essay Award from the Washington Theological Consortium, I examine the well-known Baptism, Eucharist, and Ministry document of the World Council of Churches with respect to the related issues of apostolicity and episkopé (or “oversight”). I then indicate significant advances and shifts in the dialogue by evaluating more contemporary sources, namely, the insights of theologians from different Churches of the Reformation in the U.S., working on the “Churches Uniting in Christ’s “Consultation on Episkopé,” and an independent, though related, presentation of a Catholic theologian John Burkhard.