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Ignatian Spirituality as Ecclesial Spirituality

Koning, Robin (2010) Ignatian Spirituality as Ecclesial Spirituality. In: Inaugural National Symposium of the Australian Ecumenical Council for Spiritual Direction: Exploring Contemporary Spirituality and Its Impact on the Practice of Spiritual Direction , 29-30 October 2010, Centre for Theology and Ministry, Parkville.


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A notable feature of contemporary spirituality is the distinction often made between spirituality and religion. The Spiritual Exercises of St Ignatius Loyola, a major resource for spiritual direction, can seem to confirm this dichotomy with its emphasis on seeking God in the inner movements of the heart. At the same time, Ignatius was very much a man of the Church, who included "Rules for Thinking and Feeling with the Church" (Sentire Cum Ecclesia) within the Exercises.

This paper argues that the Exercises are irreducibly ecclesial. They are not simply a program for personal spiritual growth if this is taken to mean such growth independent of the Church‘s life. The argument does not depend on the Rules for Thinking with Church, which present their own hermeneutic difficulties, but proceeds by a detailed textual analysis of the main body of the Exercises noting the place of ecclesial elements throughout. It does so under five headings: the place of the Church in the Election; the doctrinal specification of the person of Jesus; the role of the sacraments; the communion of saints; and various traditions on which Ignatius draws.

Item Type: Conference Papers (Paper)
Repository Version: Published Version
Keywords: Ignatian spirituality, Spiritual Exercises, ecclesiology
Fields of Research: 22 Philosophy and Religious Studies > 2204 Religion and Religious Studies > 220401 Christian Studies (incl. Biblical Studies and Church History)
Socio-Economic Objective: C Society > 95 Cultural Understanding > 9504 Religion and Ethics > 950405 Religious Structures and Ritual
C Society > 95 Cultural Understanding > 9504 Religion and Ethics > 950406 Religious Traditions (excl. Structures and Rituals)
E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970122 Expanding Knowledge in Philosophy and Religious Studies
Type of Activity: Pure Basic Research
Subjects: D - Spirituality and Spiritual Direction
C - Systematic Theology
College/Association with University of Divinity: UFT-JTC: United Faculty of Theology - Jesuit Theological College
Depositing User: Rev. Dr Robin Koning SJ
Date Deposited: 17 Jul 2011 22:46
Last Modified: 24 Jun 2014 01:54
URI: http://repository.divinity.edu.au/id/eprint/873

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