"Grace"
in The Desires of the Human Heart:
An Introduction to the Theology of Bernard Lonergan
edited by Vernon Gregson
Mahwah, New Jersey: Paulist Press, 1988
pp.168-181

 
 
 
    "The love of God is poured forth in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who is given to us" (Romans 5:5). This is the key to all of Lonergan's writings on grace.  Here is the ground of that human experience of "falling in love with God," which Lonergan so eloquently describes in Method in Theology. Here is the core of that conversion, the study of which Lonergan makes the center of all significant theology in the future.
    Lonergan's best-known treatment of these points is in the numerous scattered references and asides in Method. There, although not focusing on an integrated account of grace, but exclusively on the notion of method itself, he nevertheless drops frequent intriguing hints about this central religious reality.  He speaks of the added factor in human experience which makes theology a distinct science; of the mystical specialization of consciousness and the meaning of prayer; of conversion and falling in love with God.  Comparing this reality to its Christian technical expression gives him his most prominent example of "basic special categories"and "derived special categories."
    But it would be a mistake to suppose that the unintegrated exposition of Method indicates a "later Lonergan" slowly breaking his way through from sterile intellectualism to an awareness of this important topic.  Lonergan has been writing about this all through his life, and he has treated it in a fully integrated way in three places: the "Gratia Operans" articles, Insight, and the Latin notes "De Ente Supernaturali."
 
I. The "Gratia Operans" articles.

II. Insight.

III. "De Ente Supernaturali."

IV. Relations of the three major expositions in terms of Method in Theology.