Summer 2003

The Nuptial Mystery: A Perspective for Systematic Theology?

Angelo Scola

“The nuptial mystery offers a systematic perspective—but one never taken for granted or possessed—for the intellectus fidei.”1

1. Beyond a classical prohibition


We have already noted the impossibility of approaching the Holy Spirit except from two directions at once: as the (subjective) quintessence of the mutual love of Father and Son, hence, as the bond (nexus) between them; and as the (objective) fruit that stems from and attests to this love. This impossibility translates into a convergence of the poles. Imagine for a moment that the act of love between a man and woman did not include nine months of pregnancy, that is, the aspect of time. In the parents’ generative-receptive embrace, the child would already be immediately present; it would be at one and the same time their mutual love in action and something more, namely, its transcendent result. . . . In this sense, it is precisely perfect creaturely love that is an authentic imago Trinitatis.2

1. Farewell Lecture, given at the Lateran University, 10 December 2002.

2. Hans Urs von Balthasar, Theologik, vol. 3: Der Geist der Wahrheit (Einsiedeln: Johannes Verlag, 1987), 145–146.