Seminary/School of Divinity



Degree Name

Master of Arts in Theology (M.A.)

Type of Paper/Work



Stephen Hipp

Second Advisor

Christian D. Washburn

Third Advisor

John Martens


It is our conviction that the reason the doctrine of predestination is largely avoided in Catholic circles/institutions is two-fold. First, it is not understood in its proper historical context as a Catholic doctrine, derived from the sources of revelation and explicated by virtually all of the great theologians of the Church. Instead, it is often seen in some Catholic circles as an anomaly of Reformed theology. Secondly, that there are two underlying theological errors which distort the doctrine itself: 1. That God is just one agent (albeit the most powerful one) among many in the universe. 2. That human liberty requires a radical autonomy, even from the very causal ground on which it stands. If one’s theological landscape does not include a proper understanding of divine providence and the creature’s dependence on God for every free act, whether natural or supernatural, then God’s predestination becomes an obstacle to freedom and an arbiter of mercy for some, and strict justice for most.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.