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Towards an Empirical-ideal Ecclesiology

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On the Dynamic Relation between Ecclesiality and Locality

This essay explores the ecclesiological methodological divide between the study of the church from a Platonic (idealist) philosophy and from an Aristotelian (realist) philosophy. In response, it examines the dynamic relationship of ecclesiality (ideal ecclesiology) and locality/contextuality (empirical ecclesiology) of the church that are closely interrelated. This essay attempts to articulate an empirical-ideal perspective of a robust corrective to ‘blue-print ecclesiology’ (Healy); while at the same time contributes an idealistic perspective to the study of the visible ecclesial gathering. To illustrate this ecclesiological framework, it attempts a re-reading of the marks of the church through the lens of the ‘preferential option of the poor’.

Affiliations: 1: Kantonsstrasse 1, 8863 Buttikon, Switzerland,


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