Eric Hendry

Defense Date


Graduation Date

Spring 2011


Immediate Access

Submission Type


Degree Name





McAnulty College and Graduate School of Liberal Arts

Committee Chair

Radu Bordeianu

Committee Member

George S. Worgul

Committee Member

Marinus C. Iwuchukwu


Charisms, Ministries, Pneumatology, Renewal, Spirit, Suenens


There is a clearly articulated body of teachings and similarity of experiences within contemporary ecumenical Pneumatology that has been, to a large degree, neglected within the ongoing renewal of the Roman Catholic Church since the Second Vatican Council. In my research, I have come to explore the role of Léon-Joseph Cardinal Suenens - a key progressive leader at the Council - and his promotion of both charisms and the charismatic dimensions of contemporary ecclesial life. Suenens surrounded himself with some of the most talented periti at the Council, whom he continually called upon in order to articulate a theology of charisms following Vatican II. Hans Küng, the ghostwriter of Suenens' conciliar speech, continued to advocate the charisms of each baptized individual, and the specific calling to use these gifts in ministry within the church. Karl Rahner promoted the charismatic dynamic of ecclesiology, which he saw as having a democratizing effect upon ministries. Yves Congar, inspired by dialogue with Orthodox theologians, sought to recover the missing connection between Pneumatology, ecclesiology and spiritual anthropology. George Montague and Kilian McDonnell sought to recover the biblical and patristic understandings of charisms, and articulated the normative expectation of charismatic experiences within the teachings of Church Fathers such as Hilary of Poitiers, Cyril of Jerusalem, Basil of Caesarea and John Chrysostom. I also analyze 119 contemporary ecclesial statements produced by leaders within the Anglican, Lutheran, Methodist, Presbyterian-Reformed, Baptist, Pentecostal and Roman Catholic churches, as well as the International Pentecostal-Catholic Dialogues, and statements by the World Council of Churches - which each advocate wrestling with the charismatic dimensions of Pneumatology through the experiences of the contemporary, world-side Renewal in the Spirit. Finally, by drawing upon overlooked works of Thomas O'Meara, David Power and Leonardo Boff, I have come to articulate a substantiation of all forms of ministry - particularly lay ministries - based upon the charismatic discipleship that is an essential element of a living Pneumatology.