The closing session of Vatican II inevitably signified, among other things, the end of the honeymoon so far as ecumenical...

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ROME: Opponent or Partner?

The closing session of Vatican II inevitably signified, among other things, the end of the honeymoon so far as ecumenical romanticism is concerned. Now begins the proverbially agonizing work of reappraising what has been accomplished in the past few years, of determining which of those accomplishments show signs of durability, and of extrapolating from them to speculate on their future effects. This book is the first such serious work of reconsideration. The author, a Presbyterian theologian, critically examines the teachings of modern Catholic theologians in the light of official Church pronouncements (not only of Vatican II, but also of Vatican I and of Trent). He then compares such teachings with Reformation theology as presented by Luther, Calvin, and Barth, and concludes that, among the most serious obstacles to Christian unity, is the Catholic Church's concept of its own power and authority. As a corollary conclusion, however, Dr. Ehrlich finds that the most encouraging concrete achievement of the dialogue among the Churches has been that Protestantism and Catholicism have come to feel responsible for one another -- certainly a large step forward from the state of affairs, say, ten years ago. Rome: Opponent or Partner? is remarkable for the candor with which its author expresses what must be regarded as an immediately pessimistic, and therefore immediately unpopular, point of view. The book undoubtedly will offend those readers who confuse the desirable with the attainable, but it will be welcomed by those interested in new perspectives in reality. The work is highly recommended to theologians, theological students, and laymen of all denominations.

Pub Date: March 14, 1966

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Westminster

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1966