THE COMMUNAL CATHOLIC: A Personal Manifesto by Andrew M. Greeley


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Fr. Greeley, a fight industry in the hard and soft sociological analysis of American Catholicism, is fed up with the institutional church, which he declares bankrupt of ideas and leadership, and with the effete Catholic elite, wallowing in an anti-intellectual romanticism of knee-jerk radical politics, self-hatred, and spiritual therapy. Hope and strength lie with ""communal Catholics"" (Greeley declines to give a sample list, but Pat Moynthan, Richard Daley, Jimmy Breslin, Eugene Kennedy, George Meany, and David Tracy might be prominent examples)--people committed to the Catholic symbol system, proud of their heritage, and professionally involved in the real world of journalism, politics, business, education, labor unions, and urban problems. This no-nonseuse Catholic community (analogous to the Jewish or black communities in having strong religious ties but an influence transcending them) constitutes a powerful, neglected national force and offers unique resources to the nation: its realistic ethic, sense of family and neighborhood, delight in ethnic diversity and cultural pluralism, and strong school system. Greeley's manifesto is sprawling, intemperate, often unfair, but flush with bold opinions worth listening to--even if he shouts them at you.

Pub Date: June 1st, 1976
Publisher: Seabury