Theologians and the magisterium: A proposal for a complementarity of charisms through dialogue

Todd A. Salzman, Michael G. Lawler

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Archbishop Bernardin recommended that, in the relationship between magisterium and theologians, two extremes are to be avoided. On the one hand, there should be no imperialism on the part of the magisterium, co-opting theologians merely as mouthpieces for magisterial teachings. On the part of theologians, on the other hand, there should be no secession from the magisterium that would give theologians absolute autonomy and freedom from accountability. This essay analyzes the diverse charisms of magisterium and theologians and argues that they are complementary and that both parties should relate in the dialogue of charity recommended for ecumenical discussions in Pope John Paul II's Ut Unum Sint. This dialogue of charity, the essay further argues, should not be restricted to only magisterium and theologians but should embrace also, for upbuilding the Church, the entire People of God journeying together to the Holy Mystery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7-31
Number of pages25
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Religious studies


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