Thursday, May 28, 2009

Moral Theologian Says Christopher West's Work is 'Completely Sound'

Dr. Janet Smith holds the Father Michael J. McGivney Chair of Life Ethics at Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit. In her article at, she responds to Dr. David Schindler's critique of Christopher West's approach to the Theology of the Body. For his article, click here. For the origin of this debate, click here!
Here, I want to offer a brief, partial, response to Prof. David Schindler’s assessment of West’s work. The fact that Nightline got a lot wrong about West’s work is not surprising. In fact, it is surprising how much it got right. Those of us who work with the media know that potential martyrdom awaits us at the hands of an editor. West has likely been suffering a kind of crucifixion over the past week. What is puzzling is that an influential scholar chose this moment to issue a weeping, negative critique of West in such a public forum. I have great respect for the work and thought of Schindler and realize that it must be difficult to be on the receiving end of criticisms of the work of one of their most high profile graduates. I wish, however, he had found another occasion to express his reservations about West’s work.... (continue reading)
For the latest response from Dr. Michael Waldstein, click here. He is the Max Seckler Professor of Theology at Ave Maria University. He previously served as founding president of the International Theological Institute in Gaming, Austria, and was the St. Francis of Assisi Professor of New Testament there. He is a member of the Pontifical Council for the Family and is a Distinguished Fellow of the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology. He holds the degrees of B.A. from Thomas Aquinas College in California, Ph.D. in Philosophy from the University of Dallas, S.S.L. from the Pontifical Biblical Institute in Rome, and a Th.D. in New Testament from Harvard Divinity School. His published works include his definitive translation of John Paul II's Man and Woman He Created Them: A Theology of the Body, The Common Good in St. Thomas and John Paul II (Nova et Vetera), and Dietrich von Hildebrand and St. Thomas Aquinas on Goodness and Happiness (Nova et Vetera).

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