Read Anthony Sacramone's moving First Things post and was struck by the ardor at which he, not a Catholic, longs for doctrinal unity and integrity. He is unwilling to settle for a watered-down, lowest-common-denominator doctrine.
Earlier this week I saw a page from Martin Luther's bible, and it made me think how odd it is that a love for, and deep familiarity with, Scripture is not enough to unify. I assume that's because Jesus is revealed in the Scriptures but He isn't Scripture itself.
Perhaps I emphasize too much the importance of doctrine compared to the practice of charity and the virtues, but it's still sad to see the marginal notes of Martin Luther - and all the meditation and sweat over Scriptures that that implied - on a page from the book of Ephesians (see below).
Proof again of our fallenness I suppose; he loved Scripture and yet he hated it didn't he? For he didn't love all of it. He famously wanted to exclude some books, like James and Revelation. But I think we have to love all of it, just as we have to love all of the doctrines of the Church, even the ones we don't like.
I've been lately interested in the early Church Father Origen. He was an interesting and deeply admirable fellow wasn't he? Origen had some heterdox notions (such as Universalism) and I suppose that's why he was never declared a saint but he sure loved and studied Scripture. Yet even to be called a Father of the church is sometimes disputed (from Aquilina's Fathers of the Church):
Not everyone agrees that Tertullian, Origen, and Eusebius should be called Fathers... B. Schmid's Manual of Patrology denies them the title, as does Yves Congar's The Meaning of Tradition. However, the Catechism of the Catholic Church cites Tertullian explicitly as a Father of the Church and nine times invokes Origen as an authority. Cayre says, "The valuable services that these men have rendered to the Church explain these exceptions."I'd like to read more about Origen. This book by de Lubac looks interesting although likely challenging and not really a biography.
Origen by Joseph Trigg looks like a good biographical sketch.
My favorite Jesuit, Fr. Edward Oakes, says that "of all the Church Fathers none has been more misunderstood than Origen."
UPDATE: Bill Luse writes: "I believe Universalism remained speculative with Origen, and not something he would have wanted in any creed."