HONESTY IN THE CHURCH by Daniel Callahan
Kirkus Star


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The associate editor of Commonweal continues here the penetrating scrutiny of the Roman Catholic church that he began in his earlier Mind of the Catholic Layman. As in that book, however, much that he has to say is equally pertinent to the Protestant situation; and he draws upon Protestant thinkers--Barth, Tillich, Bultmann, Bonhoeffer--and especially Bishop John Robinson--for some of his argument. The issue of ""honesty in the Church"" confronts the Church in two critical forms: (a) in the question whether the Church can be honest in the public sphere about its past and present faults, its need for reform, and its unfulfilled promise; and (b) in the private realm, in the question whether the Church can allow its members to bring into the open their anxieties, doubts, and diele in matters of faith and doctrine. The current Vatican Councils are seen as raising the whole issue of freedom in the Church, versus submissive obedience, with a new urgency. The critical situation confronting the Church today arises from the way in which modern man is, being shaped by the contemporary, secular world and is disposed to reject the conventions by which honesty is forestalled. Although brief, the book should stimulate provocative discussion not simply among Roman Catholics, but among all concerned with the form and relevance of Christianity to contemporary culture. ""The Church must teach men to be honest; men must teach the Church.

Pub Date: March 30th, 1965
Publisher: Scribners