Latin American Theology: Roots And Branches - A Review
Latin American Theology: Roots And Branches is a book edited by Maria Clara Bingemer and Diego Irarrazaval that offers a comprehensive overview of the history, development and current challenges of Latin American theology. The book consists of 16 chapters written by different authors who are experts in their fields, covering topics such as liberation theology, indigenous theology, feminist theology, eco-theology, intercultural theology and more. The book also includes a bibliography and an index for further reference.
The book aims to provide a critical and constructive dialogue between Latin American theology and other theological traditions, as well as to highlight the contributions of Latin American theology to the global church and society. The book is divided into three parts: the first part traces the origins and sources of Latin American theology, the second part explores the main themes and methods of Latin American theology, and the third part examines the challenges and prospects of Latin American theology in the 21st century.
The book is a valuable resource for anyone interested in learning more about Latin American theology, its history, diversity and relevance. The book is written in an accessible and engaging style, with clear explanations and examples. The book also offers a critical perspective that challenges some of the assumptions and limitations of Latin American theology, as well as invites readers to reflect on their own theological contexts and commitments. The book is a testimony of the richness and creativity of Latin American theology, as well as its prophetic and transformative potential.
One of the distinctive features of Latin American theology is its use of the social sciences, especially Marxism, to analyze the historical and structural causes of oppression and injustice in the region. Latin American theologians adopted a critical and dialectical approach to reality, seeking to unveil the contradictions and conflicts that shape human existence. They also sought to articulate a praxis of liberation that would involve both personal conversion and social transformation, inspired by the biblical message of God's preferential option for the poor and oppressed.
Another characteristic of Latin American theology is its dialogical and contextual nature. Latin American theologians engaged in dialogue with other theological traditions, such as Protestantism, Orthodoxy, and Eastern religions, as well as with popular religiosity, indigenous spirituality, and Afro-American cultures. They also recognized the diversity and plurality of Latin American contexts, such as urban and rural, mestizo and indigenous, male and female, etc. They affirmed the need for a theology that would be faithful to the gospel and relevant to the concrete situations of the people.
A third aspect of Latin American theology is its prophetic and ecumenical dimension. Latin American theologians denounced the injustices and violence perpetrated by oppressive regimes, often at the cost of their own lives. They also advocated for human rights, democracy, peace, and solidarity among the peoples of Latin America and the world. They participated in ecumenical movements and networks that fostered collaboration and mutual support among Christians of different denominations and traditions. They also envisioned a new way of being church that would be more participatory, inclusive, and missionary. 061ffe29dd