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Karl Rahner (1904-1984): A Theology in the Service of Proclamation
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Karl Rahner continues to be discussed even 40 years after his death. Born on March 5, 1904, in Freiburg, Breisgau, Germany, he entered the Society of Jesus on April 20, 1922, and died on March 30, 1984, in Innsbruck, Austria, a few weeks after turning 80.

Arriving in the Tyrolean capital in the summer of 1936, he taught there as a lecturer from 1937 to 1939, and from 1948 to 1963 as professor of dogmatics, until he was called to occupy the Romano Guardini chair in Munich (1963-67) and then again in Münster, Westphalia (1967-71). In autumn 1981 he returned to Innsbruck, to spend his old age there.

But what did “old age” or “retirement” mean to him? Rahner in fact continued publishing, lecturing, preaching and giving interviews. Throughout his life he was intensely active and thus in every way a Jesuit of the “old school.” Always ready to serve, he made his knowledge and expertise available not only to colleagues and students, but also to ordinary people who asked him for advice. One of his confreres wrote, “He hated the word ‘genius.’ Rahner’s productivity is due to his consistent application.”
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