Vol 20 No 3 2013

The Debate Over Light in Darkness and the Catholicity of Hans Urs von Balthasar

Neil Ormerod


The publication of Alyssa Pitstick's Light in Darkness has raised questions about the status of von Balthasar's theology, in particular his theology of the descent of Jesus. The paper will consider her claims, and responses to her thesis, and those of others who have raised critical questions about his theology. It will not address the question as to the orthodoxy of his theology, but will ask how his theology can contain so many elements which stretch boundaries yet not attract official concern. It will consider his position on the descent into Hell, divine immutability, his Trinitarian thought and his position on the beatific vision of Jesus. It will compare his treatment with that given to the writing of Sobrino's Christology.