Karl Rahner

Karl Rahner, SJ (5 March 1904 – 30 March 1984) was a German Jesuit priest and theologian who, alongside Henri de Lubac, Hans Urs von Balthasar, and Yves Congar, is considered to be one of the most influential Roman Catholic theologians of the 20th century. He was the brother of Hugo Rahner, also a Jesuit scholar.


Karl Rahner

Portrait of Rahner by L. M. Cremer
Born(1904-03-05)5 March 1904
Died30 March 1984(1984-03-30) (aged 80)
Innsbruck, Tyrol, Austria
Alma mater
Era20th-century philosophy
RegionWestern philosophy
SchoolTranscendental Thomism
Main interests
Notable ideas
Anonymous Christian

Rahner was born in Freiburg, at the time a part of the Grand Duchy of Baden, a state of the German Empire; he died in Innsbruck, Austria.

Before the Second Vatican Council, Rahner had worked alongside Congar, de Lubac, and Marie-Dominique Chenu, theologians associated with an emerging school of thought called the Nouvelle Théologie, elements of which had been condemned in the encyclical Humani generis of Pope Pius XII. Subsequently, however, the Second Vatican Council was much influenced by his theology and his understanding of Catholic faith.[2]