Professor Stephan van Erp

Professorial Fellow
Religion and Theology

Areas of expertise: fundamental theology; philosophical theology; theological metaphysics, modern catholic theology; theological aesthetics, development of doctrine, theology of religious life

ORCID ID: 0000-0002-6568-7494

Phone: +61(03)99533307



Stephan van Erp is Professor of Fundamental Theology, Ladies of Bethany Chair, and the Head of the Research Unit Systematic Theology and the Study of Religions at KU Leuven. He is also the Director of the Research Group for Fundamental and Political Theology, and of the Interfaculty Centre for Catholic Thought at KU Leuven, and of the KUL/AdMU Research Centre for Catholic Theology and Social Justice, based at Ateneo University in Manila.

He studied theology at the Theological Faculty of Tilburg and at the University of Oxford, and philosophy at the Catholic University of Nijmegen. He has been a Visiting Fellow at the University of Oxford and King's College London. He taught Fundamental Theology, Dogmatic Theology and Ethics at the universities of Tilburg, Nijmegen, and Groningen in the Netherlands. Currently, he also holds the Edward Schillebeeckx Chair at the Radboud University Nijmegen.

His research interests concern the fields of philosophical and fundamental theology, in particular the relationship between faith and reason, and between metaphysics and theology. He also explores the connection between Christian doctrine and political theology, in particular the challenges of global Catholicism for the content of faith and theology. His specific expertise concerns 20th and 21st-century Catholic systematic theology, especially the theologies of Edward Schillebeeckx and Hans Urs von Balthasar. Currently he is working on research projects on the biography of Edward Schillebeeckx, and on the theology of revelation. For the IRCI, he is the Chief Investigator of Theologies of Catholicity, together with Philip McCosker and Judith Wolfe.

Stephan van Erp is an editor of Concilium: International Journal for Theology, the Managing Editor of Tijdschrift voor Theologie, Editor-in-chief of Brill Research Perspectives in Theology, Series Editor of T&T Clark Studies in Edward Schillebeeckx (Bloomsbury Press) and of Studies in Philosophical Theology (Peeters Publishers), and on the editorial boards of Philippiniana Sacra and of Crossing: The INPR Journal. He is also Chair of the jury of the Edward Schillebeeckx Essay Prize, and organiser of the annual Edward Schillebeeckx Lecture.

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Select publications

Authored books - selection

  • The Art of Theology. Hans Urs von Balthasar’s Theological Aesthetics and the Foundations of Faith, (Studies in Philosophical Theology, 25), Leuven: Peeters Publishers, 2004.
  • De onvoltooide eeuw. Voorlopers van een katholieke cultuur, Nijmegen: Valkhof Pers, 2015.
  • A Happy Theologian. A Hundred Years of Edward Schillebeeckx, Nijmegen: Valkhof Pers, 2014.

Edited books - selection

  • T&T Clark Handbook of Edward Schillebeeckx, London - New YorkT&T Clark, 2019.
  • God de levende. Essays over geloof, cultuur en politiek, (Theologische klassiekers), Utrecht, KokBoekencentrum.,2019
  • Identité et visibilité. Conflits de générations chez les dominicains, (Collection Spiritualité), Toulouse: Domuni Press, 2019.
  • Salvation in the World: The Crossroads of Public Theology, (T&T Clark Studies in Edward Schillebeeckx, 2), London - New York: Bloomsbury Press, 2017.
  • Grace, Governance and Globalization, (T&T Clark Studies in Edward Schillebeeckx, 1), London - New York: Bloomsbury T&T Clark, 2017.
  • Met nieuwe ogen en een nieuw hart. Religieuze dienstbaarheid in beweging, Antwerpen: Halewijn, 2017.
  • Conversion and Church. The Challenge of Renewal, (Brill's Studies in Catholic Theology), Leiden - New York: Brill Publishers, 2016.
  • Tussen Credo en Amen. Geloven als opdracht en overgave, (LOGOS. Leuvense ontmoetingen rond geloof, openbaring en spiritualiteit, 11), Antwerpen: Halewijn, 2016.
  • Het habijt weer uit de kast. Botsing of ontmoeting tussen generaties in dominicaans perspectief, Leuven: Dominicanen.
  • Edward Schillebeeckx and Contemporary Theology, London - New York: Continuum/T&T Clark, 2010.

Articles and Chapters - selection

  • Nulla Proportio in Concordantia. Catholic Political Theology and the Mystery of Consensus, Modern Theology, 2020, 124-137.
  • Schillebeeckx's Metaphysics and Epistemology: The Influence of Dominicus De Petter. In: S. van Erp, D. Minch (Eds.), T&T Clark Handbook of Edward Schillebeeckx, London – New York: Bloomsbury, 2019, 29-44.
  • Kenosis, Unity, and Kingdom: Christology and Ecclesial Renewal at Vatican II. In: A. Mayer (Eds.), The Letter and the Spirit: On the Forgotten Documents of Vatican II, (Bibliotheca Ephemeridum Theologicarum Lovaniensium), Leuven: Peeters, 2018, 247-266,
  • Creation, Civil Authority and Salvation. Edward Schillebeeckx's Political Theology After Vatican II, Archivum Fratrum Praedicatorum, 3, 293-316, 2018.
  • Seeing Christ on the Battlefield. Sign Making, Sacrament and Conversion. In: S. van Erp, K. Schelkens (Eds.), Conversion and Church. The Challenge of Renewal, Leiden - New York: Brill Publishers, 2016, 65-86.
  • Holiness in the Making. Labor and Sacrament in Twentieth Century Catholic Theology, Journal of Religious Ethics, 45, 2017, 274-286.
  • World and Sacrament. Foundations of the Political Theology of the Church. Louvain Studies, 2016, 102-120.


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