I have never tried to create a system of my own, an individual theology. What is specific, if you want to call it that, is that I simply want to think in communion with the faith of the Church, and that means above all to think in communion with the great thinkers of the faith. The aim is not an isolated theology that I draw out of myself, but one that opens as widely as possible into the common intellectual pathway of the faith. For this reason exegesis was always very important. I couldn't imagine a purely philosophical theology. The point of departure is first of all the word. That we believe the word of God, that we really try to get to know and understand it, and then, as I said, to think it together with the great masters of the faith. This gives my theology a somewhat biblical character and also bears the stamp of the Fathers, especially Augustine. But it goes without saying that I try not to stop with the ancient Church but to hold fast ot the great high points of thought and at the same time to bring contemporary thought into the discussion.
On conscience and the "primacy of truth over goodness"
There is a willingness to purchase well-being, success, public regard, and approval from the reigning opinion by dispensing with the truth . . . under the pretext of goodness people neglect conscience. They place acceptance, the avoidance of problems, the comfortable pursuuit of their existence, the good opinion of others, and good-naturedness above truth in the scale of values.
On the importance of "[keeping] intact a sense of the joyful beauty of the redeemed creation":
Excerpts from Salt of the Earth: The Church at the end of the Millenium (Ignatius Press: 1997), part of this summer's (re)reading.