Hans Urs von Balthasar's
Truth is symphonic. Balthasar compared his work as a publisher with an orchestra: You yourself can't play more than one instrument in a concert, and the tutti, the full orchestra, is what counts. In addition to his literary work as an editor of collections, he went in search of other "musicians and artists" in order to let us listen to the symphonic sound of the truth.
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"Klosterberg. European Series"
The series appeared from 1942 until 1952, a remarkable 51 volumes. The series’ goal: “To gather together the cornerstones for a spiritual Europe”. If one considers the time in which the series appeared, one recognizes how fundamentally relevant his concern was.
2. Menschen der Kirche
in Zeugnis und Urkunde
"Men of the Church in Witness and Deed"
In the second collection, which appeared in the years 1942 to 1951 and from 1955 to 1967, a personal view of the Church dominates, which has its archetype in Mary. Three main themes emerge: the theology of the saints, the evaluation of the Council, and objective mysticism.
3. Christ heute
"In this collection Balthasar utilizes for the first time "Johannes-Verlag", the publishing house which he founded. Together with the authors, he engages in a committed dialogue with the questions of the times. Looking back, one can see how he preludes the major themes of Vatican II. Above all, the position of the church towards the world is reflected again and again.
The spirit that animates the dialogue is the basic will "to show the Christian as the unsurpassable greatest, id quo majus cogitari nequit, since it is God's human word for the world, God's most humble service, which overcomes all human striving, God’s final love in the glory of his death, so that all beyond themselves may live for him."
The fourth collection seeks to imprint the mark of the ecclesiastical abundance of holiness in people who live in the passing time. While the "Christ Today" collection is extroverted, so to speak, Sigillum gathers inner strength for dialogue.
The Church “ is the unity of those, who are gathered around the immaculate, therefore boundless, therefore christified ‘Yes’ of Mary, and consequently those who, formed by it, are ready to let God’s salvific will be done to them and for all their brethren.
This primal act means 'hearing the word'; it justifies and demands 'contemplative prayer' not only in the Greek, but significantly in the biblical sense of the opening of faith of the whole person to the ever-greater meaning of God's word; it also justifies the preparatory delving of the scriptures for this act.”
The Adoratio Collection was published in the years 1955-1956.
Horizons a more cultural, theological-philosophical and time-critical series, was published between 1956 and 1960.
7. Horizonte. Neue Folge
"Horizons. New Series"
Renewal and continuation of the series in 1968.
8. Lectio Spiritualis
In this series, the attempt is made to present the Tradition so well sifted through and inspected
that today's reader sees it as essential, even indispensable.
Lectio Spiritualis was published from 1958 to 1974.
9. Der neue Weg
"The New Way"
A series of publications on Communities in World
"This series has set itself the goal of addressing and clarifying all questions that arise in the face of the new ways of life approved by the Church: Connection of a life in the evangelical counsels with a life in the world and in a profession.
What is the new way of life, when contemplated biblically, theologically, spiritually? In which documents has the Church affirmed them, and what meaning does she give to them? How does this way of life compare to the other ecclesial states? These questions are among the most exciting and momentous in the area of the church today."
The series began in 1963 and continued after Balthasar's death.
Criteria are strewn far and wide. They provide current material of quality, mingle what is demanding with what is lighter, and always offer in their title, however, a handbook for the discernment of spirits.
Up to Balthasar’s death, the series which was to continue afterwards numbered 84 volumes.
11. Theologia Romanica
In 1973 the series Theologia Romanica was created to make the living world of theology and spirituality in roman countries accessible to the reader.
12. Beten Heute
Praying Today expressly shows the variety of approaches to Christian prayer and its forms that are recommended today, using authors amply proven and avoiding some of the advertised, yet dubious, methods.
The series, which began in 1972, was to continue after Balthasar's death in 1988.
13. Christliche Meister
“Christian Masters consciously strives to present something that is truly formative, partly through a selection accessible to non-theologians, partly through first-time translations, partly through a critically clean text format, with the addition of important works by contemporary authors.”
Publication of the collection began in 1979 and has continued after Balthasar's death.