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George A. Lindbeck Papers

Call Number: RG 172

Scope and Contents

These papers document in a thorough way Lindbeck's work as a student, professor, and participant in ecumenical dialogue - his writings, lectures, courses taught at Yale, ecumenical activities, and work related to theological education. There is considerable overlap between the various series and sub-series described below.

The Correspondence of Series I dates from 1937 to 1996 and is primarily related to Lindbeck's academic and ecumenical work, rather than personal in nature. The series is organized chronologically, with undated letters at the end. The first sub-series of Series II, Writings, contains writings from Lindbeck's student days. The second part of Series II contains articles and reviews arranged according to the various topics of interest to Lindbeck. Series III, Material related to The Nature of Doctrine, contains response to the book by others, and Lindbeck's responses to the responses. Series IV, Notes, is grouped in broad topical categories. Series V, Course-Related Materials, documents Lindbeck's teaching activity at Yale. The material is organized by class number, with classes without a given number organized alphabetically. Series VI, Conferences/Lectures, contains drafts and finished products for Lindbeck's many speaking and conference engagements. The materials are arranged chronologically, with undated material arranged alphabetically by title. Series VII, Collected Materials: Theological Education, is organized into topics which are alphabetically ordered. Series VIII, Collected Materials: Ecumenism, is broken into subsections, including Lutheran, Roman Catholic, and Lutheran-Roman Catholic Dialogues. Within these subsections, materials are organized by topics which are alphabetically ordered. Series IX, Collected Materials: General, is organized by topics which are alphabetically ordered. Series X, Personal Items and Memorabilia, is organized by topics which are alphabetically ordered. An eleventh series, Addendum, was added in 2011 but with the receipt of additional documentation in 2014, the material from the Addendum series has now been integrated as subseries of the original series structure in order to provide better access.


  • 1912-2007
  • Majority of material found within 1937 - 2001


Conditions Governing Access

The materials are open for research.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of George A. Lindbeck


  1. I. Correspondence, 1912-2007, n.d.
  2. II. Writings, 1941-2006, n.d.
  3. III. Materials related to The Nature of Doctrine, 1976-1988, n.d.
  4. IV. Notes, 1965-1999, n.d.
  5. V. Course-related Materials, 1952-1994, n.d.
  6. VI. Conferences/Lectures, 1942-2006, n.d.
  7. VII. Collected Materials: Theological Education, 1958-1992, n.d.
  8. VIII. Collected Materials: Ecumenism, 1958-1992, n.d.
  9. IX. Collected Materials: General, 1959-1992, n.d.
  10. X. Personal Items and Memorabilia, 1940-2004, n.d.


38.5 Linear Feet (92 boxes)

Language of Materials


Catalog Record

A record for this collection is available in Orbis, the Yale University Library catalog

Persistent URL


Correspondence, writings, notes, course-related material, and collected material document the life and work of George Lindbeck, noted Yale theologian. The collection is a rich source of information about Lutheran-Roman Catholic dialogue and Vatican II. Lindbeck, the Pitkin Professor Emeritus of Historical Theology, served on the faculty of Yale Divinity School and the Yale University Religious Studies department after graduating from the Divinity School in 1946 and receiving his Ph.D. from Yale in 1955. He is the author of six books, including The Nature of Doctrine: Religion and Theology in a Postliberal Age and Challenge and Response: A Protestant Perspective on the Vatican Council. Lindbeck's many awards include several honorary degrees and a Guggenheim Fellowship. He was a delegate to the second Vatican Council in Rome in the 1960s and has long been active in ecumenical dialogue, particularly between the Lutheran and Roman Catholic Churches. Lindbeck's "Report on Ecclesiastically Independent Theological Education" released by the Rockefeller Foundation in 1976 was also a notable contribution.

Biographical / Historical

George A. Lindbeck born in China on March 10, son of Lutheran missionaries.
Received B.A. from Gustavus Adolphus College in Minnesota.
Studied at Augustana Theological Seminary.
Received M.Div. from Yale Divinity School.
Completed two years of study, partially at the Pontifical Institute of Medieval Studies in Toronto, and partially at University of Paris (Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes).
Named an Instructor at Yale.
Received his Ph.D. from Yale University; named Assistant Professor at Yale.
Completed Morse Research Fellowship from Yale in Tubingen, Germany.
Completed two years as Delegated Observer of the Vatican Council in Rome.
Named Associate Professor at Yale.
Received honorary degrees from Notre Dame University and Augustana College.
Published Challenge and Response: A Protestant Perspective on the Vatican Council.
Published The Future of Roman Catholic Theology: Vatican II, Catalyst for Change.
Fellow at the Center of Cultural and Ecumenical Research, St. John's University at Wolfson College.
Fellow at Cambridge University, England.
Release of Rockefeller Foundation "Report on Ecclesiastically Independent Theological Education."
Fellow at the Tantur Ecumenical Institute, outside of Jerusalem.
Received honorary degree from University of Munich, Germany.
Named Pitkin Professor of Historical Theology at Yale.
Received honorary degree from Upsala College.
Published The Nature of Doctrine: Religion and Theology in a Postliberal Age.
Received honorary degree from Gustavus Adolphus College.
Held Guggenheim Fellowship.
Visiting Professor of Ecumenics at the Gregorian University in Rome.
Professor Emeritus
Received honorary degrees from Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley and Virginia Theological Seminary
Received Wilbur Lucius Cross Medal by Yale Graduate School Alumni Association
Received Paul Wattson Christian Unity Award from Franciscan Friars of the Atonement and honorary degree from Wartburg Seminary
Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences
Guide to the George A. Lindbeck Papers
Compiled by Adam Eckhart, Christine Luckritz, George Keddie, and Martha Lund Smalley
2002, 2010, 2011, 2014
Description rules
Finding Aid Prepared According To Local Divinity Library Descriptive Practices
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

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