On the Side of the Poor
By: Gustavo Gutierrez Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Muller
"In my judgment, the ecclesial and theological movement that began after the Second Vatican Council in Latin America under the name 'liberation theology," . . . is one of the most significant currents of Catholic theology in the 20th century." --Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Muller
For many years the theology of liberation, which emerged from Latin America in the 1970s, was viewed with suspicion and even hostility in Rome. In this historic exchange, Father Gustavo Gutiérrez, one of the original architects of liberation theology, and Cardinal Gerhard Müller, current Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, offer a new and positive chapter. Cardinal Müller, who as a student of Gutiérrez spent many summers working in Peru, writes with deep feeling and conviction about the contributions of liberation theology to church teaching—particularly in its articulation of the preferential option for the poor.
In his own contribution here, Gutiérrez lays out the essential ideas of liberation theology, its ecclesial location, and its fresh enunciation of the gospel for our time.
Gustavo Gutiérrez, a Dominican priest and theologian from Peru, is the author of A Theology of Liberation, On Job: God-Talk and the Suffering of the Innocent, We Drink from Our Own Wells, The God of Life, and many other books. He teaches at the University of Notre Dame.
Gerhard Ludwig Müller was ordained a priest in 1971. After teaching dogmatic theology in Munich, he was appointed bishop of Regensberg. In 2012 he was appointed Prefect for the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. He was named a Cardinal in 2014.