Fortress Press

Foundational Theology: A New Approach to Catholic Fundamental Theology

Foundational Theology

A New Approach to Catholic Fundamental Theology

Neil Ormerod (Author), Christiaan Jacobs-Vandegeer (Author)


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  • eBook coming soon

Fundamental theology is traditionally viewed as the starting point for the various disciplines within Catholic theology; it is the place where solid foundations are established for further research and engagement with the vast terrain of historical, systematic, philosophical, and sacramental/liturgical theology.

In Foundational Theology, a landmark new study, Neil Ormerod and Christiaan Jacobs-Vandegeer seek to ground foundational theology in the normative drive toward meaning, truth, goodness, and beauty, appropriated by the theologian through religious, moral, intellectual, and psychic conversions. In doing so, this work maps out the implications of those fundamental orientations to the specific questions and topics of the Catholic theological tradition: God, Trinity, revelation, and an array of doctrinal points of investigation.

The authors in this work provide a comprehensive approach to theological foundations for theologians while employing a new, groundbreaking approach to the discipline through the application of the insights of Bernard Lonergan, one of the foremost Catholic theologians of the modern era. 


  • Format Paperback
  • ISBN 9781451480412
  • eBook ISBN 9781506401881
  • Dimensions 6 x 9
  • Pages 450
  • Publication Date December 1, 2015


"This is a very welcome book, especially at a time when an international group of theologians is collaborating on a new systematics in the Lonergan tradition. The renewal of theology that Lonergan hoped and worked for has perhaps finally begun to take place."

Robert M. Doran, SJ | Marquette University

"This work is a lucid, sophisticated, and persuasive reformulation of the venerable discipline of fundamental theology. It issues from the conviction that the authentically converted subjectivity of the theologian provides the grounds for the truly compelling objectivity of theology. As such, it is an attractive—and challenging—invitation to theology for newcomers (not to mention a salutary reminder for old hands). Its collaborative spirit is evident not only in its composition, but also in its provision of a secure base from which other theological approaches can advance their distinct contributions with methodological clarity and effectiveness. By this generous and integrative approach, Foundational Theology allows theologians spread out across diverse specialties to see their work as part of a shared enterprise, one that seeks to give a coherent account of all the breadth and richness of Christian hope."

Dominic F. Doyle | Boston College

"This clear and convincing book demonstrates how conversion is at the heart of theology no less than of redemption itself. I recommend it highly to anyone searching for the language to build common ground among diverse groups, particularly those interested in promoting fruitful collaboration among theologians."

Mark Miller | University of San Francisco

"This is the book that many of us have been waiting for. Its appeal to a notion of conversion, using both Lonergan and Doran, helps us treat what is truly foundational and, for Roman Catholics, to move beyond a pre-Vatican II attitude of 'apologetics' where we offer merely rational arguments to defend the credibility of the faith. Furthermore, clarifying notions such as the meaning of meaning, the scale of values, and how to treat the situation as a source of theology, helps us all negotiate the plethora of different styles of doing theology today, from Thomism, to theologies of aesthetics, to post-colonial feminist and liberation theologies."

Gerard Whelan, SJ | Pontifical Gregorian University