Communio: International Catholic Review
COMMUNIO: INTERNATIONAL CATHOLIC REVIEW
Communio, an international federation of journals that now includes editions in Germany, Italy, North America, France, Croatia, Belgium, Spain, Poland, Brazil, Portugal, Slovenia, Hungary, Chile, Argentina, and the Czech Republic, began publication in 1972. In the late 1960s, Hans Urs von balthasar had planned a small book of essays by prominent Catholics that would address the essentials of the faith in light of the controversies following the Second Vatican Council. When it became clear that an anthology would not suffice, but that a continuing conversation with different currents was necessary, he turned to the idea of a journal. The journal began to take concrete form in a conversation arranged during a session of the International Theological Commission in Rome in 1970, followed by a second meeting in Paris in 1971. Theologians called together for the first conversation were Balthasar, H. de lubac, L. Bouyer, J. Medina, M. J. Le Guillou, and J. ratzinger. Balthasar was made father of the joint project with special responsibility for the German branch. Le Guillou was charged with responsibility for the French. Because of Le Guillou's subsequent illness, the French edition was delayed. An Italian partner then emerged, made up partly of members of the movement Comunione e Liberazione. Communio thus was finally launched in 1972, with two editions, German and Italian, followed in 1974 by the North American and the French. With the help and encouragement of then-archbishop of Krakow, Karol Wojtyła, a group of Polish theologians eventually secured government permission and founded an edition some ten years later in 1983 and 1984.
In the words of Balthasar, the purpose of Communio is "negatively: to resist at all costs the deadly polarization brought on by the fervor of traditionalists and modernists alike; positively: to perceive the Church as a central communio, a community originating from communion with Christ ('given from above'); as a communio enabling us to share our hearts, thoughts and blessings." The journal is theological in nature, intended for specialists as well as for all those concerned with fundamental questions of the faith in its engagement with contemporary culture. In keeping with the spirit embodied in the review's title, the editors sought from the beginning to form a community among themselves and their authors that would proceed on the basis of communio. In North America, this has led to the formation of study circles. For the same reason, the editors chose a federated rather than centralized administration for the review, allowing for the coincidence of unity and difference among the many language areas. The different editions frequently publish translations of each other's articles.
Bibliography: h. urs von balthasar, "Communio: International Catholic Review," Communio 19 (1992): 507–8 NC; "The Mission of Communio," Communio 19 (1992): 509 NC. john paul ii, "Address to the Group Representing the Journal Communio," Communio 19 (1992): 433–435. a. sicari, "A Reflection on the Ideals of Communio," Communio 16 (1989): 495–498. j. ratzinger, "Communio : A Program," Communio 19 (1992): 436–449.
[d. l. schindler]