Hospitality as Holiness: Christian Witness Amid Moral Diversity

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Ashgate Publishing, Ltd., 2006 - Religion - 215 pages
We live amid increasing ethical plurality and fragmentation while at the same time more and more questions of moral gravity confront us. Some of these questions are new, such as those around human cloning and genetics. Other questions that were previously settled have re-emerged, such as those around the place of religion in politics. Responses to such questions are diverse, numerous and often vehemently contested. Hospitality as Holiness seeks to address the underlying question facing the church within contemporary moral debates: how should Christians relate to their neighbours when ethical disputes arise? The problems the book examines centre on what the nature and basis of Christian moral thought and action is, and in the contemporary context, whether moral disputes may be resolved with those who do not share the same framework as Christians. Bretherton establishes a model - that of hospitality - for how Christians and non-Christians can relate to each other amid moral diversity. relationship between reason, tradition, natural law and revelation in theology, and more specifically to those engaged with questions about plurality, tolerance and ethical conflict in Christian ethics and medical ethics.

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Contents

Introduction
1
THE PROBLEM OF MORAL PLURALITY
7
Alasdair MacIntyres diagnosis of the contemporary context
9
Virtue tradition and the recovery of moral reason
17
Truth Thomism and discerning the moral order
20
Natural law and the conditions for free and just relations
25
Incommensurability and the resolution of moral disputes
26
Summary
30
Local politics and resisting modernity
96
MacIntyres conception of relations between Christians and nonChristians
99
Ecclesiology and resolving ethical disputes
101
Eschatology and the nature of Christian distinctiveness
110
Summary
115
The practice of hospitality
121
Hospitality and the shape of relations between Christians and their neighbours
126
A theologically specified account of hospitality
128

Germain Grisez and the shared rationality of all moral traditions
34
Grisez and the new natural law account of ethics
36
Grisez and MacIntyre compared
39
The challenges Grisez poses to MacIntyre
47
A critique of Grisez and the new natural law theory
51
Summary
56
Oliver ODonovan and the distinctiveness of Christian ethics
61
ODonovans evangelical ethics
64
ODonovan and MacIntyre compared
69
Ad hoc commensurability or a clash of traditions?
74
MacIntyres openness to theological specification
80
Incommensurability and the resolution of moral disputes revisited
87
THE NATURE AND SHAPE OF CHRISTIAN HOSPITALITY
93
Local politics ecclesiology and resisting modernity
95
Hospitality and tolerance contrasted
147
Summary
150
Hospitality hospice care and euthanasia a case study in negotiating moral diversity
160
Defining euthanasia
161
The practice of medicine and euthanasia
165
Philosophical defences of euthanasia
168
Relating autonomy death and suffering within a theological account of good care
172
MacIntyres response to the care we owe the sufferingdying
178
Grisezs understanding of the care we owe the sufferingdying
180
Hospice care as an embodiment of Christian hospitality
183
Conclusion
196
Bibliography
199
Index
211
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About the author (2006)

Luke Bretherton is Lecturer in Theology and Ministry at King's College London.

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