...study for my Maryvale degree, I've been reading Henri de Lubac, so when I saw a title by him in a friend's bookcase I pounced. But it was something different - and I'm absolutely fascinated. It's an account of activities in defence of human rights in wartime France - heroic stuff,meetings of underground groups, secretly-distributed newsletters, crucial papers eaten and swallowed by a priest friend while in a room awaiting interrogation from the Gestapo...
Fr de Lubac was part of courageous group that wrote and distributed the secretly-printed Cahiers du Temoinage Chretien and his memoirs were published in the 1980s, by Ignatius Press, so that the events would not be forgotten: "Christian Resistance to Anti-Semitism: memories from 1940-44." What emerges is the heroism of many in the Church in France - and also the shameful reality of the Petain regime.The latter, of course, had its apologists who hailed it as supporting Traditional Catholic France, opposing Communism etc... It helps to explain the situation of the Church in France, and tensions even up to the present day.
It is interesting that de Lubac's theology, which would later have a profound influence on many priests of the rising generation and at the Vatican Council opened by Blessed John XXIII, was forged not in comfortable libraries in easy circumstances but in the more poignant atmosphere of a nation where major issues of right and wrong - on which vulnerable lives depended - were crucial realities for every day. So things like justice,truth, the value of the Church with a consistent teaching , and the essence of a personal relationship with Christ, are all explored alongside brief accounts of difficult wartime communication and the tensions of various Resistance groups.
Although much of the history was known to me, the theological insights are sparkling in freshness. A real find.