This article first appeared in Fall 1992.
Communio International Catholic Review, intends:
- negatively: to fight at all costs against the deadly polarization brought on by the fervor displayed by traditionalists and modernists alike;
- positively: to perceive of the Church as a central communio, a community that originated from communion with Christ, who presented himself as a gift to the Church; as a communio that will enable us to share our hearts, thoughts, and blessings.
Experience teaches us that leading a Catholic life today is only possible where the mystery has retained its complete depth, where dogmas are not perceived as problems, are curtailed in their essential dimensions and reduced to purely human understanding, or where secondary forms of tradition are not selected as criteria for affiliation with the Church. Both extremes engender fanaticism, while genuine communion will only thrive based on the serenity shared by the children of God.
Only by assuming a non-polemic role of tranquility in the center will it be possible to assume genuine responsibility for the whole.
Here the tensions can be addressed that are characteristic of all living things -- including the Church of Christ-- which are not necessarily cause for alarm: tensions between the spirit of Pentecost and the institution, between personal and ecclesial conscience, and the like.
Communio does not present the mysteries of our faith as intellectual riddles for specialists; Communio does not treat theology as a purely academic subject. All that Communio wishes to accomplish is merely to help clarify the issues that confront the contemporary Christian by utilizing the shining depths of our common faith and, in so doing, to counteract widespread feelings of uncertainty.
Like the Catholic Church itself, Communio is essentially international in scope, though without disregarding the peculiarities of various cultures. Thus Communio's national editions deal with common themes and exchange basic articles, while individual editorial policy will pay close attention to the needs of a given language area.
Hans Urs von Balthasar
Translated by Albert K. Wimmer
Copyright 1992 by Communio: International Catholic Review