About our research
Through its research, the Center for Catholic Studies (CCS) places itself at the heart of the Catholic tradition of Radboud University—named after Radboud, the bishop of Utrecht (b. 850 -- d. 917). The CCS takes up Radboud’s Catholic heritage in an ecumenical and interdisciplinary way through academic research and education, by articulating how religious traditions can become more self-reflexive. Such self-reflexivity continues to serve as the strongest bulwark against any form of sectarianism or fundamentalism. In this way, the Center for Catholic Studies makes an indispensable contribution to the development of society at large. In a post-secular age, the solution to economic, political, or cultural problems is hardly conceivable without taking into consideration the enduring value and importance of religious literacy.
Interdisciplinary and International
The current work done by researchers affiliated with the CCS explores past and contemporary problems related to the historical and systematic formation of Catholicism. The historical and the systematic sections work closely together in an attempt to understand and to accompany processes of Catholic self-reflection. An interdisciplinary cooperation with other departments and research groups is also characteristic of the research output of the CCS.
Church History & Canon Law
The historical section of the CCS researches exemplary forms of ecclesial practices, by investigating different modes of the development of heterodoxy and heteropraxy—noting the complex interactions in traditional discussions about concepts like ‘heathendom’ or ‘heresy’.
The systematic section researches issues related to ‘Public Theology’, which explores the possible ways of finding and communicating Catholicity in a public square that is not always prepared to foster or be hospitable toward such communication.
Radboud University offers many resources for visiting researchers in Theology and Religious Studies, including the Titus Brandsma Institute for Spirituality, and various archival materials available at the Catholic Documentation Center, which is also home to the Edward Schillebeeckx archives.