The major themes in Joy of the Gospel (as I see them)

Here’s a rough road map of where I hope to head with these posts. As I studied the Joy of the Gospel, I found myself agreeing with the commentators who complained that this is a tough document to summarize. The themes I’m focusing on are really interrelated, but I will do my best to tease out what I see in the document that makes each one worth talking about separately. Here’s my list:

    The joy of the gospel vs. the anguish of the world

    A call to focus on mercy/grace/forgiveness over sin/law/judgement

    The Church should be local, personal, externally focused, communal (& poor)

    The value of diversity

    Renewing the preferential option for the poor


    Peace and unity

These are major themes, some of them overtly so. There are also a couple of trends, motifs, whatever you want to call ’ems that I noticed and wanted to share:

    Francis and the devolution of Church power from the papacy to the people

    “All things new” – while Francis draws heavily upon and writes within the context of Catholic doctrine, there is a theme of God working to make all things new that needs to be culled out.

    What Francis asks of us

And then there are a couple leftovers that I may throw in at the end: “Haters gonna hate” and great quotes that didn’t fit elsewhere.

2 responses to “The major themes in Joy of the Gospel (as I see them)”

  1. beth schwarzmueller Avatar
    beth schwarzmueller

    Logistics question…how will we know when you have added to the posting?

    1. If you follow the blog, you get an e-mail!

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