Blog Template Theology of the Body: Notes from the Fiat Mihi Symposium: Reinhard Huetter on a Renewal of Marian Theology

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Notes from the Fiat Mihi Symposium: Reinhard Huetter on a Renewal of Marian Theology

Reinhard Huetter is Professor of Christian Theology at Duke University.

Professor Huetter describes the enterprise of renewing theology in a Marian key as a project of re-discovering an abandoned palace full of particularities relevant to ecclesiology and soteriology, in lieu of contemporary theology's less fecund abstractions.

In particular, Huetter focused on the doctrine of Mary's Assumption as vivifying the eschatalogical hope of the Church; in Mary we find fulfilled - and already actually anchored in Heaven- what God has promised for all humanity. In this way, the Church's hope for salvation and the particular resurrection of the body is sustained because of Mary, in whom the Church can rejoice that the economy of salvation has been completed.

Huetter invoked Louis Bouyer's own renewal of Marian theology in The Seat of Wisdom of the 1960's. Huetter also referred to and the Scriptural significance of Mary's being the only creature ever greeted by an angel as indicative of her excellence above all creatures in grace and consequent familiarity with her Creator, and as indebted above all for the grace which preserves her, unstained, from original sin.

Favorite Anecdote (s)?

1) The suggestive note that the doctrine of Mary's assumption into Heaven reminds the feminist revolt in modern theology that there is indeed already a woman in Heaven, so they need not worry so much about de-gendering God the Father; we see in Mary that there is a fully, integrated, maternal creaturely life enjoying the Beatific Vision and interceding for the rest of the creation already.


2) A Marian reading of Psalm 138:

1 I will praise you, O LORD, with all my heart;
before the "gods" I will sing your praise.

2 I will bow down toward your holy temple
and will praise your name
for your love and your faithfulness,
for you have exalted above all things
your name and your word.

3 When I called, you answered me;
you made me bold and stouthearted.

4 May all the kings of the earth praise you, O LORD,
when they hear the words of your mouth.

5 May they sing of the ways of the LORD,
for the glory of the LORD is great.

6 Though the LORD is on high, he looks upon the lowly,
but the proud he knows from afar.

7 Though I walk in the midst of trouble,
you preserve my life;
you stretch out your hand against the anger of my foes,
with your right hand you save me.

8 The LORD will fulfill his purpose for me;
your love, O LORD, endures forever—
do not abandon the works of your hands.