Encounters with the Dominican Intellectual
and Spiritual Tradition:
20th and Early 21st Centuries

crosslisted as CT9604C

Rev. Dr David Willis OP
Not offered in 2020
The unit will initially focus on three theologians Yves Congar, Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange, and Edward Schillebeeckx. The relationship of each to the Nouvelle Théologie that appeared in the 1930’s and remained influential to the Second Vatican Council will be analysed. Selections from their writing relating to theology and spirituality will be studied (Congar: tradition, lay spirituality, Christ-as-leader; Garrigou-Lagrange: the nature of theology, the ultimate end of human life, the dynamics of the spiritual life; Schillebeeckx: sacraments and religious rituals, the search for God and God’s search for humanity). In a final section, the writings of the English Dominican, Kenelm Foster on Dante’s Divine Comedy and the Dominican tradition, will be explored.



face-to-face 3-hour weekly classes in semester


  • one 7,000-word essay 100%
  • one 2,500-word seminar paper 30%
  • one 4,500-word essay 70%


  • Congar, Yves. Jesus Christ. Translated by Luke O’Neill. New York: Herder & Herder, 1966. 
  • ———. The Meaning of Tradition. San Francisco: Ignatius, 2004.
  • Foster, Kenelm. The Two Dantes and Other Studies. London: Darton, Longman & Todd. 1977. 
  • Garrigou-Lagrange, Reginald. Beatitude: A Commentary on St Thomas’ Theological Summa, 1a 11ae, qq. 1–54. Translated by Patrick Cummins. St Louis: B. Herder, 1956.
  • ———. The One God: A Commentary on the First Part of St Thomas’ Theological Summa. Translated by Bede Rose. St Louis: B. Herder, 1954.
  • ———. The Three Ways of the Spiritual Life. Rockford, IL: Tan Books, 1977.
  • Nichols, Aidan. Reason with Piety: Garrigou-Lagrange in the Service of Catholic Thought. Naples: Sapientia Press of Ave Maria University, 2008. 
  • Schillebeeckx. Edward. Church: The Human Story of God. Translated by John Bowden. New York: Crossroad, 1990.  
  • ———. “The Sacraments: an Encounter with God.” In Edward Schillebeeckx OP, edited by Martin Redfern. Theologians Today: A Series. London: Sheed & Ward, 1972.
  • ———. “Towards a Rediscovery of the Christian Sacraments: Ritualising Religious Elements in Daily Life.” In Collected Works of Edward Schillebeeckx, Vol. 11, Essays Ongoing Questions. Translated by Marcelle Manley. London: T. & T. Clark, 2014.