Scribe of the Kingdom: Essays on Theology and Culture
Aidan Nichols opens his major two-colume study of theology and culture with a powerful statement of the 'intelligent conservatism' which he sees, not ... Show synopsis Aidan Nichols opens his major two-colume study of theology and culture with a powerful statement of the 'intelligent conservatism' which he sees, not as one way of being Catholic among others, but as the very teaching of Jesus Christ. The 'intelligent conservative' is, indeed, the 'scribe of the Kingdom' described in our Lord's parable; 'Every scribe who has bene trained for the kingdom of heaven is like a housekeeper who brings out of his treasure what is new and what is old'. (Mt 13:52.) Fr Nichols distinguishes three elements in thsi approach. First, it combines openned to the new with fidelity to the old, and in this sense its enemies are, on the one hand, the followers of the late Archbishop Lefebvre, for whom nothing valuable emerged in the Church after the opening of the Second Vatican Council; and, on the other those progressives who in effect claim that there is nothing of value in the pre-conciliar Church which needs to be preserved.Secondly, intelligent conservatism, in contradistinction to theological liberlism, adheres to the principle that the special historical revelation given in Jesus Christ and his Church takes epistemological precedence over any other claimants for this exalted position.And thirdly, the conserver dedicated to the kingdom of heaven is not 'a simple Simon; he is, precisely, a scribe, a learned man, a skilful man, an artful man'. Intelligent conservatism, in short, is guided by an habitual sensibility built up in preceding generations and constituting a kind of practical wisdom with which the Catholic tradition and its theological exploration must be creatively continued today.