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Tillard, Jean-Marie Roger


Dominican theologian, ecumenist; b. Sept. 2, 1927, St. Pierre - Miquelon; d. Nov. 13, 2000, Ottawa, Canada. Born Roger Tillard, the son of Fernand Tillard and Madeleine Ferron. He was on his mother's side related to Mon- signor Auguste Diès, editor of Plato in the Guillaume- Budé Collection, and specialist in ancient philosophy. He began his studies at St. Pierre-Miquelon, at the Collège Saint-Christophe of the Holy Ghost Fathers. However, the Second World War interrupted the activities of the College, and he was sent to Canada to the Collège Saint- Alexandre, maintained as well by the Holy Ghost Fathers, at Limbour, near Ottawa. He obtained his B.A. in 1948. He asked to be received in the Dominican order of Canada, Sept. 14, 1949.

Following his novitiate in St. Hyacinthe, Quebec, he made his profession in simple vows Sept. 15, 1950, with the religious name "Jean-Marie." He received a doctorate in philosophy at the Angelicum, in Rome, in 1953, with a thesis entitled: "Le bonheur selon la conception de S. Thomas d'Aquin" ("St. Thomas Aquinas's Conception of Happiness"). He then studied theology at the Saulchoir, where he was ordained a priest, July 3, 1955. The Saulchoir had for some time been applying the historical method to the study of Thomistic texts, attempting to restore to prominence in the reading of St. Thomas his use of Scripture, patristic texts, and conciliar decisions, as well as the events or situations which had led Thomas to his positions. Tillard received the license and lectorate in theology from the Saulchoir in 1957.

Returning to Ottawa in 1957, he was assigned to teach Trinitarian theology, Christology, and Sacramental theology. In 1968 he established the Dominican College's "Theological Saturdays," for which he remained in subsequent years the principal collaborator. His research was directed principally towards two domains of dogmatic theology: from 1961 to 1975, the theology of the religious life; and from 1975 to the end of his life, ecclesiology, in particular ecumenical problems. His publications include 20 volumes and some 250 journal articles. In 1967 the Dominican General Chapter named him Master of Sacred Theology.

Tillard was frequently called upon to participate in theological research groups or to act as a theological advisor. From 1962 to 1967 he was an expert and theological advisor for the Canadian Episcopate at Vatican Council II. From 1965 to 1968 he was president of the Société canadienne de théologie. From 1974 to 1980, he was a member of the International Theological Commission. However, it was on the ecumenical plane that his contribution was most important, through his active participation in diverse commissions: on the national level, from 1969 he was a member of the National Commission for the Union of the Roman Catholic and Anglican Churches, Ottawa, Canada; on the international level, he served in various commissions: from 1969, he was a member of the International Joint Commission for the Organic Unity of the Roman Catholic Church and the Anglican Communion (Rome-London); he was a consultant for the Secretariat for the Unity of Christians (Rome); in 1977, he became a member of the International Commission for Dialogue with the Disciples of Christ (Rome-Indianapolis); in 1978, he was elected vice-president of "Faith and Order," World Council of Churches (Geneva); and in 1979 he was chosen to be a member of the International Commission for the Union of the Orthodox and Roman Catholic Churches (Rome-Constantinople). From 1981 to 1985, he was a member of the directive council of the Ecumenical Institute, Tantur (Jerusalem).

Bibliography: j.-m. r. tillard, L'Eucharistie, Pâque de l'Église (Unam Sanctam 44; Paris 1964); Devant Dieu et pour le monde. Le projet religieux, (Cogitatio Fidei 75; Paris 1974); L'Évêque de Rome (Paris 1982), Eng. tr. The Bishop of Rome (London 1982); Église d'Églises: L'écclésiologie de communion (Cogitatio Fidei 143; Paris 1987), Eng. tr. Church of Churches (Collegeville, Minn. 1992); Chair de l'Église, chair du Christ: Aux sources de l'écclésiologie de communion (Cogitatio Fidei 168; Paris 1992); L'Église locale: Ecclésiologie de communion et catholicité (Cogitatio Fidei 191; Paris 1995); Credo nonostante: Colloqui d'iverno con Francesco Strazzari (Bologna 2000). g. r. evans and m. gourgues, Communion et réunion: Mélanges Jean-Marie Roger Tillard (Bibliotheca Ephemeridum Theologicarum Lovaniensium, CXXI; Leuven 1995), bibliography for 19611994.

[g.-d. mailhiot/

l. dewan]

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