Vol 4, No 1, 2005

Yves Congar: Apostle of Patience

Robert Nugent SDS


Yves Congar, a French Dominican priest, was one of the pioneers in the Church's theology of ecumenism and the place of the laity in the Church. As with most pioneers breaking new ground and exploring new avenues, he encountered suspicion, hostility and active opposition and sanctions from Church authorities. For a time, he was banned for ecumenical work including speaking and lectures and banished from France to Rome and England. During all this he managed to maintain a deep love for the Church and a loyalty to his Order and to his deeply felt insights. His scholarly work has had a profound impact on contemporary theology. Eventually, he was exonerated and became one of the most influential theologians at the Second Vatican Council. Shortly before his death he was made a cardinal of the Church.