This image of God in humans was tarnished but not lost in the Fall; it stands in need of restoration. Such restoration begins with a natural response to revelation of the divine reality implanted there by the Creator, but then is sustained by God's ongoing care for creation. The visibility of the Church through its structures is an integral part of the incarnate Christ among us. The dynamic of the Church involves a necessary tension between the divine and human aspects as the Church comes to birth.
The Church is not simply divine; it is also human. Attempts to divinize the Church result in distortions just as the claim that a Christian is divinized through baptism leads to distortions if the human person and human nature of the baptized are not acknowledged as the realities within which the baptismal grace is working. Reason, as a capacity for discerning order within creation, begins with experience and proceeds by demonstration, whereas faith begins with revelation and deals with truths that exceed the grasp of reason.
The issue within the Catholic tradition about the bridge between inner and outer reality has been contextualized within the recognition of the place of love within the human person. The one who loves to observe nature or who loves social gatherings or who loves to work - all of these examples of love indicate a dynamic engagement between the subject with an objective world. Where the reality of love is stronger than that of alienation, then the basis upon which engagement with the world can proceed is laid within the Catholic tradition.
Methodical doubt as a universal practice is not practical and could not be carried out even by the most rigorous of skeptics. Even though questioning and seeking is integral to human life and to the Christian life, there is a difference between a questioner who regards himself as absolutely autonomous and a questioner who seeks truth. The sense that order and structure in nature is malleable and can be reshaped by humans is part of the approach of experimental science. Within its own sphere, such engagement with and reshaping of nature seems to be a legitimate human activity.
But if there is no corresponding effort to discern the order and beauty of the world as it is, then humans have taken over the role of creators who will try to reshape reality in their own image. The sense of wonder and awe at reality outside of them is ignored. In a world governed by technological values, instrumental reason is more important than reason that helps humans to find their place within a larger order given to them. Integration is shortchanged in favor of manipulation.
The form of knowing that comes from contemplation is dismissed in favor of the kind of knowing that comes from making. The Catholic thinker is an embodied human being. This person has been baptized into Christ and so is part of the Body of Christ: The life of the Catholic and the Catholic's search for truth disintegrates if self-centered existence is given full sway. The mystery of the human person, the mystery of the universe, and the mystery of God are focused for the Catholic Christian in the dynamic interplay of the divine and human natures in the person of Christ.
Christ becoming incarnate is the center of reality for the Catholic Christian. This intuition about the meaning of Catholic life provides the context for reason to function creatively in response to the world given to us.
Catholic Healthcare Organizations and the Articulation of Their Identity
The challenge of the Incarnation requires the cooperation of faith and reason. Thinking is indispensable to the full development of the Catholic Christian. Even the tiniest gnat contains within it the inexhaustible mystery of being. The subject is not sovereign in this engagement. The subject who is drawn in wonder and love to an object will allow that object to reveal aspects of its being in a way different than a subject that wishes to exploit the object and wring its secrets from it. The Catholic tradition, with its emphasis upon divine assistance and discipline, calls for paying attention to the body and for directing it.
By analogy, this same challenge of balance and integration of diverse members presents itself to the Catholic Church which is understood as a body through the incorporation of its members into the transcendent, yet immanent body of Christ. The Catholic tradition shapes the vision of the church. This tradition includes both the content of what is handed on and the actual process of handing it on.
Catholic Healthcare Organizations and the Articulation of Their Identity
Since the twelfth century universities in the Western world have come to play an important role in the unfolding of this tradition. To seize on what is partial or to freeze an aspect of what has been handed on and absolutize it as if it captured the entire mystery of God is what von Balthasar refers to as a "scandal" where the finite claims the place of the infinite. The Incarnation points to the manifestation of Christ throughout history into the present.
The engagement with the living Christ lies at the heart of Catholic theology such that the poetry of this encounter challenges the logic of any dogmatic system. The first universities in Europe in the twelfth century were shaped in fundamental ways by the union of professors. The professors were at the beck and call of the students, but gained a measure of stability in their occupation by their connection with the city government that tried to keep the professors from moving to other locations.
When the chancellor made attempts to gain control over the guild of professors, the Holy See intervened and prevented him from doing so. From their inception, universities were independent corporate bodies that needed to communicate and cooperate with the ecclesiastical and political authorities of their time. Academic fields develop methodologies to search for the knowledge needed to understand a particular aspect of nature or society. As each field advances, the growth in data and in the steps of the method result in greater specialization. Such growth has brought great benefits to society, but the shadow side of these positive developments is the fragmentation of knowledge.
The larger view of the connection between various disciplines admits of no easy solutions in the modern university. The slogans of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries that "God is dead" and that "metaphysics has come to end" indicate that theology and metaphysics have been discredited in the academy as disciplines that offer a rational approach to the integration of knowledge. The scientific approach to history, when taken to its logical extreme, results in fragmentation of the type celebrated by postmodernism. Yet it is this effort to understand the level beyond the particular which is reason's contribution to integrating the rich, diverse world given to us.
From the Catholic perspective, faith and love provide an important groundwork within which tradition and reason can operate so as to articulate a dynamic worldview that communicates the truth about the order within nature. Augustine and Aquinas both identified evil as a lack of due good. But if one transfers an existential understanding of evil as an independent force to a metaphysical level, then one has moved into a dualistic view of the world which compromises the Christian belief that Christ has conquered evil through his death and resurrection. The Catholic disavowal of a metaphysical battle between good and evil has profound consequences on the shaping of one's imagination and self-understanding in the world.
A dualistic worldview leads to distortions in the use of time and energy on both an individual and a collective level. The demythologization of evil aims to limit the amount of energy and attention to be devoted to combating evil. On the other hand, the intensity and pervasiveness of evil lends credence to the existential understanding of evil as a demonic force or forces. The ascetical struggles of early monks used the language about demons to describe the forces of disintegration within themselves and their communities.
A person needs to be more vigilant in a world where one can be attacked by demons in the form of temptations, diseases, and calamities. Fragmentation and ideological battles may be lamented as unfortunate dimensions of communal life and, in serious cases, as sinful. Von Balthasar claims that "Love vanquishes its opponent less through acuteness than through fullness. It is such love or other-directedness that will allow the subject to respect one's own experience and the unique experiences of others but at the same time will not see this individuality as disruptive of unity.
Heresy and schism have been regarded as major problems in the Catholic tradition, for Christ has united heaven and earth through his dying and rising and all creatures are called to recognize Jesus as "the way, the truth, and the life" John The place of disagreement, debate, and dissent in the Catholic community is best assessed within this larger commitment to the primacy of love.
The concern for others and the readiness to stay with intractable problems over the long-run are fundamental to the Catholic tradition. Withdrawal and fission are not tactics that find legitimacy in the Catholic tradition -- except as part of specific, tactical maneuvers. The schisms that have split the universal church are a source of scandal and cannot be viewed as legitimate expressions of the particularity of peoples and circumstances. Critical inquiry requires that one follow the data and the argument of the issue at hand and reach conclusions in accord with the evidence.
Any positions in conflict with the data should be reexamined. This freedom to follow the argument in a disciplinary area may come into conflict with the Catholic tradition. From the perspective of the magisterium, the dissenting investigator is out of step with the more inclusive, fundamental truth of the Catholic tradition. The Galileo affair is a well-known example.
Cardinal Ratzinger counsels that published findings should be understandable by the typical member of the congregation. He claims that truth, when properly articulated and rightly understood, is not esoteric but readily comprehensible. So the question of how scholars and researchers can freely pursue their investigations within a Catholic institution of higher learning remains an important concern. Catholic institutions need scholars and researchers in all fields, including theology, to pursue their investigations so that they are attentive to the data and allow reason to guide them.
Who is the voice of these limits? These points provoke much controversy, so much so that some will regard a Catholic university as an oxymoron.
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However, no institution gives a completely free slate to any individual to do as he or she wishes. Critical to this debate over the freedom within an academic institution is an understanding of what constitutes authentic freedom and how such freedom is safeguarded. Such debate will lead opposing sides to become more informed about one another's views and, in the long run, can promote a greater appreciation of the complexity of the created world. The mystery of Christ as revealed in creation and to creatures is a superabundant, all-encompassing reality that is continually unfolding.
Careful research and free debate is essential for advance of knowledge. On some issues which have an immediate pastoral impact, the magisterium will intervene to direct the discussion. Reason is integral to the human person and has played an honorable role in the Catholic intellectual tradition. In our times, radical skeptics discount the possibility of reason's capacity to attain truth. The Catholic tradition, with strong voices such as that of Augustine, honors subjectivity as an arena for the disclosure of important truths, but the objective world is also an area in which truth can be made manifest and known.
The methodical doubt or systematic skepticism of epistemologists and theorists who have severed the connection between the knower and the known are, from the vantage point of the Catholic tradition, alienated seekers of truth who are driven more by abstract questioning rather than drawn by wondering love in their search for truth. The fundamental reality of the incarnate Christ who is both Creator and Redeemer is grasped by the Christian community as a mystery alive in its experience. The depth and richness of this mystery unfolds within the Catholic tradition. This mystery will never be completely disclosed to humans for Christ engages humans in the dynamics of love and thinking that involve both disclosure and retreat.
In the early Christian centuries, the challenge of understanding Christ as both God and man demanded the use of Greek terms, such as that of homoousios, to maintain that Jesus did not forfeit his divinity by becoming human. The view that God the Father was unchanging was axiomatic throughout the formative early Christian centuries.
By contrast, the Hebrew tradition emphasized the constancy and fidelity of God's relationship with the Israelites and so readily referred to God as one who might change his stance in a given particular set of circumstances for the sake of the covenantal relationship. The practice of the Christian community's borrowing from classical culture illustrates that the Christian and Catholic tradition grows up and lives within the cultures of the world. These cultures express important truths about nature and socio-political life that help Christians and Catholics understand their own culture.
In the eleventh and twelfth centuries, the works of Aristotle were reintroduced into the European and western world from the Islamic schools where they had been preserved and studied since they were taken over from the Syriac schools of the eastern Roman Empire of the early Christian centuries.
In , the Church placed a ban on Aristotle's works, which only served to increase the study of them for it was necessary to know what one was condemning.
Love and Knowledge: The Heart of the Catholic Intellectual Tradition
As Aristotle's works gained attention, more credence was given to his theory of knowledge that humans must first sense a reality before they can know it. Through the senses, the human knower can perceive the form of the object. The form of the object is constitutive of knowledge; it is the form that individuals talk about, and it is this which takes shape in the imagination and memory of the individual and is true insofar as it corresponds to the form of the object in creation.
For Aquinas , the true form is in the material object and needs to be perceived by the knower. Furthermore, Aquinas claimed that the matter of an object individualized the object and so gave material reality an important place in his worldview, even though matter itself is unknowable. The truth about the object is found in the correspondence between the image in the mind and the object external to the observer. Aquinas claims that the observer reaches some reality external to his imagination and can say that he knows something beyond than what he makes in his imagination.
It is desired because it is desirable, not vice versa.
Christianity is one of the frameworks of western culture, containing goods that contribute to the morals of modern culture. It lost its dominant position. It cannot be imposed anymore on subjects, but only be made accessible and valued through individual experiences. As shown above from different perspectives, it is relevant for contemporary Catholic HCOs to articulate their identity.
The interviewed persons emphasize that articulating clear missions, visions and values is relevant for organizational-theoretical reasons, and for clearly presenting the organization as a Catholic facility. The Directives apply these teachings to U. From a philosophical perspective Taylor argues that in modern culture articulation is a necessary means to create identity, to restore and preserve the moral goods of modern culture, and critically to assess the way these goods are being realized.
He believes Christianity to be a major moral source for the goods of modernity, but as opposed to earlier times, modern subjects will be inspired by this source only if and in so far as it connects with their individual experience. We called this a modernized concept of articulation.
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From this modernized concept two additional reasons will be discussed to answer the question whether and why articulation of Catholic identity is relevant. First, articulation is a means to contribute to the moral teaching of the Church. Second, articulation is a way for Catholic HCOs to contribute to moral dialogues in contemporary pluralistic society. Above we found several strong reasons for this emphasis. The Directives provide Catholic HCOs with a substantive horizon for their goal to continue the healing mission of Jesus. They empower and oblige them to strive for humane and holistic care.
They offer a critical potential against treating patients only as medical problems, or only according to their ability to pay. In particular, the Directives are valued as a robust moral framework for taking care of the poor and marginalized, despite financial pressures and consequences. Next to these substantive reasons to observe the Directives, there are practical ones. Next, observing the Directives protects their Catholic identity in modes of cooperation with non-Catholic facilities.
Further, there is no reason for not complying with the Directives, because according to the interviewees all employees appear to be willing to accept them, irrespective of their personal moral and religious convictions. Finally, as some interviewees said, any attempt to a less strict identification with the Directives would evoke a vehement debate with rigid religious groups, in which there is nothing to gain, and much to lose, at least in terms of time.
Nevertheless, a modernized concept of articulation allows us to argue that the magisterial teaching can be enriched by taking into account the numerous moral experiences of people within HCOs with illness, suffering and death, with the vulnerability of life, with questions of meaning, and with hard medical-ethical or organizational-ethical choices. These experiences are gained against the backdrops of the complexities of modern western culture, among others pluralism, secularization, high progress in technology and science, strong dominance of economical thinking.
Standing in this culture, experiences gained by and within Catholic HCOs appeal to practical intelligence and conscientious judgments. In many cases the ethics committee represents the forum to discuss the institutional implications of these experiences, and, hence, to develop policies and guidelines. Articulation will show the plurality of goods, and eventually evils, that are at stake: Moreover, because many experiences are gained while standing in caring or governing relations with concrete subjects, the question of what one morally owes to this unique man or woman becomes much more pressing.
Next, by articulating and rearticulating experiences, they mature in the course of time: An experienced physician, for instance, tries to discern the good of a patient by remembering what has proven to be good in previous comparable situations without duplicating them into the present, by making use of his medical knowledge and by looking forward to what should and could be pursued for this patient in this situation. Experience is the cornerstone of practical wisdom, known as the virtue of prudence, or the recta ratio agibilium, the rectified judgment of things to be done Henry, , p.
Medical and governmental prudence can add indispensable knowledge to the goal of both HCOs and the Church: Therefore, Catholic HCOs can be considered as communities which can not only be taught by the Church, but which can also teach something to the Church. This is what Mahoney alludes to when he states that the teaching Church — Ecclesia docens — could learn from the learning Church — Ecclesia discens Mahoney, , p. There is support for this approach also from within Catholic moral tradition. This tradition acknowledges experience as an indispensable source of moral knowledge, in addition to Divine revelation in Scripture and tradition.
As is the case with revelation, experiences ask for explanation: In that sense, the plea of Taylor in favor of articulation is truly Catholic: Generally, natural law is described as: In Catholic tradition, faith is not just passive obedience, but also an active search for intelligibility, fides quaerens intellectum. By our reason we can discover what contributes to our flourishing. Therefore, in Catholic tradition, morality and rationality are closely interwoven. God prohibits some acts because they are wrong, i.
The connection of rationality and morality legitimates what Catholic HCOs actually do. They invite all who enter the organization, irrespective of their beliefs, to articulate what they experience as good, right and meaningful, while all have this rational capacity to search for what contributes to human happiness, and what might not. That is why HCOs can be operative as communities, learning by articulation. To conclude, rationally dealing with concrete experiences provides Catholic HCOs with a source of moral knowledge that is essential to the Church.
This source enables them to bring the Magisterial teachings to life, to make them concrete, but also eventually critically to question them. The articulating of identity by Catholic HCOs does not only consist of following the moral teachings of the Magisterium, but also of contributing the ethical validations of practical experiences.
Catholic HCOs have to bring in these validations with religious assent to the bishops Lumen gentium , nr. If such a debate can be performed in an open and well-argued way, it can contribute to the moral wisdom of the Church. Catholic morality is a living tradition. To sustain that, Catholic HCOs should be considered not only a ministry of the Church, but also as a ministry to the Church. One of the most visible contributions of Catholic HCOs to American society is their practical and effective care for the poor and marginalized.
Two studies, one historical Kauffman, and one sociological Tropman, show how the outreach toward the poor has marked American Catholic healthcare from its beginnings. Interviewees have repeatedly emphasized that: While the Catholic hospitals we visited offer concrete care for individuals, member organizations put great efforts in advocacy and healthcare reform, among others at the political level, resisting strong counter forces in the U. Underlying the differences between opponents and advocates of the present system are different views about what constitutes humane and just healthcare.
While Catholics, inspired by faith, strongly argue in favor of social justice and of the responsibility of a community to its vulnerable members, advocates of the present system show strong adherence to individual responsibility, entrepreneurialism and resistance against too much government interference. Is it possible to reconcile this gap? In his view ethics can only play a regulative function: As also Taylor stresses, the advantage of modernity is, that it protects everyone in his own autonomy and freedom to pursue his self-chosen values.
The disadvantage is the absence of any substantive dialogue between different senses of the moral good, because any particular sense of the good is considered to be not communal by definition, and should, therefore, not be articulated, at least not in the public domain. From their specific background, Catholic HCOs can contribute to substantive dialogues about humanity and justice.
First, as we saw, the Catholic reliance on natural law allows them to argue in rational terms that are, in principle understandable to all people. Reason and faith converge. Faith can empower people to reach out toward the poor and the marginalized. Reason can argue for a concept of justice in which the most disadvantaged people get priority. Thus, the reasonableness of giving this specific meaning to justice can be defended on non-religious terms, but faith can enforce this meaning. Similarly, is it possible to argue on rational and conceivable grounds that the numerous experiences of a hospital with sick and vulnerable people indicate that the humanity of health care cannot be promoted by a one-sided, consumer-driven approach to care, nor with governance of quality by only technological or financial measures.
A HCO does not have to be Catholic to start debates on justice and humanity with their employees. But being Catholic it has a strong motive to stimulate such debates. Moreover, it is by such debates, that Catholic identity is created. Second, a Catholic HCO can be considered as a miniature society, with inside the same moral and religious pluralism as outside: This creates specific possibilities. One is described by Iltis: We consider this an argument in favor of a well-articulated mission and values: A second possibility comes to the fore in the interviews and is supported by Taylor.
Articulation is an ongoing process of trying to explicate what is presupposed. To do this, we need frameworks. Several interviewees emphasized the dialogues between people with different views as an integral part of articulating Catholic identity. Being Catholic at the level of institutions is precisely that: Everybody is challenged to articulate and rearticulate her and his views, or comments on views of others. In a way it is amazing that, as far as we know, Taylor has always pleaded for substantive moral dialogues in modern society, but he has never explored the possibilities societal institutions like HCOs can offer in this regard.
Catholic HCOs are communities where such explorations can take place. What they discuss regarding the meanings of humanity and justice in healthcare and how they discuss these items can play an exemplary role in pluralistic society. We raised the question whether, and if yes, why it is relevant for contemporary Catholic healthcare organizations HCOs to articulate their Catholic identity.
We derived answers to this question from an organizational, an ecclesiastical and a philosophical perspective. Although our focus was on the U. These reasons were grounded on organizational theory; on clearly communicating its Catholic identity inside and outside the organization; on embodying Catholic identity in diverse religious and ethical behaviors areas in coherence with the Magisterial teachings of the Church; and on the necessity of articulation as a means to create identity and to re- vitalize the moral sources of modern culture.
Based on this modernized concept, we discussed two additional reasons to articulate Catholic identity. By explicating the substantial moral sources and moral goods underlying concrete experiences with health, illness, suffering and tough organizational choices, Catholic health care organizations can offer a critical and coherent contribution to the Church and to society. The objective of this contribution is a practice of humane and just care, in accordance with the demands of human dignity. By and within this practice, and the efforts of Catholic HCOs to realize it, their identity comes alive.
Finally, as we emphasized in the beginning, articulation is only one way to embody Catholic identity. It makes people aware of what is done and why it is done. It enables Catholic identity to become a continuously developing characteristic of a healthcare organization, and a source of critical selfawareness. At the same time, it demonstrates that the Catholic tradition is a living tradition. Ultimately, articulation is a means to the end of good care practices. It is in these practices that Catholic identity ought to show itself. For reasons of confidentiality, we removed the names of the HCOs and other information that could lead to identification.
In so far as there is suspicion of a link between the author of a certain interview quotation and a specific HCO, we emphasize that the views expressed are intended only to convey the personal opinions of those persons interviewed, and should not be taken to be indicative of the policy of any particular organization. All documents are available on the website of the Vatican: National Center for Biotechnology Information , U. Published online Apr Pijnenburg , 1 Bert Gordijn , 1 Frans J. Vosman , 2 and Henk A. Introduction This paper deals with the question whether, and if yes, why it is relevant for contemporary Catholic healthcare organizations HCOs to articulate their Catholic identity.
Results We will present the seven considerations, and clarify them by inserting illustrative quotes. They emphasize that articulation of identity is to ensure its integrity, not to outline what makes this organization different from others: Not just of what you are doing, but how you are doing it. It is your moral foundation. It gives meaning to the people within the organization and to the place of the organization in the whole context of the larger society. This is what energizes an organization. It also is the basis of the relationships between and among all the employees.
They are bound not because they like you, but because they are committed to the same mission. The effect on Catholics will be stronger than on non-Catholics, but the latter might be inspired by the stated values, since a Catholic source of inspiration is not a conditio sine qua non for offering care that reflect these values: Hidden UpdatePanel, which is used to help with saving state when minimizing, moving and closing docks. This way the docks state is saved faster no need to update the docking zones.
Positive View of Life The Catholic Church proclaims that human life is sacred and that the dignity of the human person is the foundation of a moral vision for society. Human life should be protected from; Abortion Euthanasia Cloning Embryonic stem cell research Death Penalty War Every person, from the moment of conception to natural death, has inherent dignity and a right to life consistent with that dignity. Human life at every stage of development and decline is precious and therefore worthy of protection and respect.
Community and Common Good Catholic tradition proclaims that every person is not only sacred but also a social being. Freedom from Oppression Since every human person is created in the image of God, they have the natural right to be free and responsible. Search for Truth and Wisdom All human persons have a natural inclination to seek knowledge and to discover truth, which is ultimately, directed to God. Many facets of creation and life such as; The human body physical and spiritual The miracle of life The natural environment Family, human friendships and love Point to a divine and loving God who created everything out of nothing.
Reconciliation Reconciliation is very important for every person, as it draws together what is apart, fractured and unhealed. It celebrates the endlessly forgiving mercy of God It brings about the reconciliation with God It celebrates the change of heart of all those who turn back to God after sin It provides the grace and help to not fracture the relationship with God again There are many areas of life that people need reconciliation with others; With God Within families Within neighbourhoods Among nations Between racial and religious groups Reconciliation brings true happiness within fractured relationships as well as to the person who gives and receives forgiveness.
Sacred Scripture For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you Mt 6: Hope and Resurrection There are many events in the world today that can generate a sense of despair and hopelessness among people. MS Word-like content editing experience thanks to a rich set of formatting tools, dropdowns, dialogs, system modules and built-in spell-check. RadEditor's components - toolbar, content area, modes and modules.