Item description for Catholic & Ecumenical: History and Hope by S.M. Frederick M. Bliss & Frederick M. Bliss S. M....
Ecumenical consciousness has not always been part of the Catholic experience. Father Bliss traces how the concern for ecumenism came about from uneasy tension to confidence in the true grace of catholicity. From the emergence of the medieval Papacy to Trent and the open spirit of Vatican II, the history of the Church continues to shape contemporary dialogue. Catholic and Ecumenical is a solid work that also gives an up-to-date and accurate view of Catholic participation in ecumenical dialogue among the churches and with people from other faith traditions."
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Studio: Sheed & Ward
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.44" Width: 5.54" Height: 0.65" Weight: 0.8 lbs.
Release Date Oct 1, 1999
Publisher Sheed & Ward
ISBN 1580510566 ISBN13 9781580510561
Availability 0 units.
More About S.M. Frederick M. Bliss & Frederick M. Bliss S. M.
Frederick M. Bliss, S.M., teaches ecumenical theology at the Angelicum in Rome where he also coordinates the work of the ecumenical section of the university. He is the author of Anglicans in Rome and Understanding Reception: A Background to its Ecumenical Use.
Frederick M. Bliss has published or released items in the following series...
Reviews - What do customers think about Catholic & Ecumenical: History and Hope?
An effective presentation of flawed doctrine, insufficiently self-critical in the end Jan 24, 2008
The Roman Catholic Church was anti-ecumenical for most of its history. It believed that it was right in all respects, and if you were not Catholic, then you were wrong. Ecumenism therefore meant that the Church would enter into dialogue only in order to convince others that they were wrong, and should become Catholic.
Times have changed, but less than meets the eye. The Roman Church now believes that it is right, but admits that others may be right in some respects, and may approach being right in other respects. As a result, the Church is more respectful of others - - though, at root, it enters into ecumenical dialogue only in order to convince others that the Roman Catholic Church is completely right while others are only incompletely right.
This book is designed for use in Catholic seminaries and similar settings. It assumes that its reader is Catholic, an assumption that is incorrect in my case at least. If you are Catholic and you want to study past doctrine, current doctrine, and the extent to which that doctrine has changed, this would be a good book for you. Bliss presents the material clearly. He stays within accepted doctrine, earning his imprimatur and nihil obstat, but he signals in various ways that he would like to see further evolution of Catholic ecumenical doctrine.
Bliss would go so far as to argue that the Church can learn from other traditions - - it cannot learn any truth, since it already holds all truth, but it can learn from others in areas of practice, pastoral care of mixed marriages, and perhaps liturgy, among other things. Fr. Bliss is an open and likable sort, and that comes through.
My summary reaction, then, is that the book is pretty good but the substance of what it presents is fundamentally flawed. Discourse and dialogue require opening your mind to the possibility that someone else might be right. It requires humility. Bliss has that humility, I think, but has not yet met the other requirement of dialogue. If you're a non-Catholic looking for Catholic ecumenism, you'll find this book both enlightening and frustrating.