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Yves Congar’s Theological Anthropology. P. 99–109

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Section: Philosophy






Hiermonk Ioann (Ivan P. Bulyko)
St. Petersburg Academy of Theology and Church Arts; ul. Mikhaila Dudina 10, St. Petersburg, 193167, Russian Federation;


Yves Congar (1904–1995) is one of the most outstanding theologians in the West. His research interests included pneumatology (the study of the Holy Spirit), ecclesiology (the study of the Church) and anthropology (the study of humans). Congar’s anthropology combines both the study of the Church and the study of the Holy Spirit, which is why he calls it pneumatological anthropology. In Cagar’s teaching of humans, the following aspects are highlighted: the creation of man in the Image of God, the corruption of the Divine Image by the original sin, and the redemption and divinization of man accomplished by Jesus Christ in the Holy Spirit. In his teaching about man as the Image of God, Congar combines the Eastern Orthodox understanding of the Image of God with that by Saint Augustine. Following the philosophy of personalism, Congar teaches that every person carries the Image of God in a unique and inimitable way. Through this uniqueness, the Image of the Triune God is expressed in humans. However, stressing the uniqueness and singularity of a person, Congar teaches about the unity of all humans. For him, man is a microcosm, a being endowed with spiritual, material and sensual qualities. In this regard, Congar speaks about a special mission of man: to unite the entire created world with God. The habitation of the Holy Spirit in our souls paves the way to eternal life in the future, when every man inhabited by the Holy Spirit will see the face of God. A person’s salvation and the habitation of the Holy Spirit in his/her soul are not an individual but a collective endeavour made together with other people comprising the Church. It is in the Church and through the Church (the Body of Christ and the Temple of the Holy Spirit) that every human being becomes the Temple of the Holy Spirit.


Yves Congar, theology, theological anthropology, Holy Trinity, Image of God, God-likeness, divinization
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