Friday, March 27, 2009

Theology of Liberation. . .

. . .again?

Names shape how people think and their expectations. The phrase theology of liberation, which arose in Latin America in the 1970s and 1980s, connotes many things and specifies time, place, personalities and actions. Beyond them all Jesus came to liberate people. Indeed, many of the specifics of the Latin American version of the theology of liberation flow from that conviction.

Yet Jesus liberates all people in all circumstances, in all times and all places. Can other versions of theology of liberation exist? Indeed they can. One example comes from Africa. In his column, All Things Catholic, Mr. John L. Allen Jr. expresses the difference between these two: "What African Catholicism has to offer the global church is liberation theology without the hang-up over ecclesiastical authority." Mr. Allen explains his meaning in his column. He focuses on "Health Care," "Lay Attitudes" and "Good Government."

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