How do Christian beliefs and practices interrelate? What is the nature and task of theology? These questions have reemerged in the contemporary discussion with new vigor. In this book Reinhard H]tter explores the link between Christian theory and action, rigorously arguing for a renewed understanding of theology as a distinct church practice. Using "pathos"-"suffering" God's saving activity-as a powerful theological motif, H]tter offers fresh insight into the relationships between the Holy Spirit and the church, doctrine and theology, and beliefs and practices. In addition, H]tter shows how reclaiming "pathos" as a central motif for theology challenges modern and postmodern views focused on human identity, agency, and creativity as definitive of theology's nature and task. Throughout, H]tter remains acutely aware of recent trends in theological discourse and develops his argument in conversation with leading contemporary thinkers from North America and Europe. His constructive work promises to reclaim theology's crucial role in the life and mission of the church.