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The Truth of Catholicism: Inside the Essential Teachings and Controversies of the Church Today [Paperback]

By George Weigel (Author)
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Item description for The Truth of Catholicism: Inside the Essential Teachings and Controversies of the Church Today by George Weigel...

A relevatory glimpse into the realm of Catholicism by an acclaimed Catholic commentator and author of Witness to Hope delves into the many controversies incited by Catholicism from inside the convictions that make the teachings of the Church essential and explains the Catholic faith and practice in society today. Reprint.

Publishers Description

The Catholic Church may be the most controversial institution in the world. Whether the question is the uniqueness of Jesus Christ, the relationship of Catholicism to other religious communities, the meaning of freedom, the use and abuse of sex, the dignity of human life from conception until natural death, or the role of women, the Catholic Church has taken challenging positions that some find inexplicable, even cruel.

In The Truth of Catholicism, George Weigel, author of Witness to Hope: The Biography of Pope John Paul II, explores these perennial questions and more, showing Catholicism and its controversies from "inside" the convictions that make those controversies not only possible but necessary. The truths of Catholicism then come into clearer focus as affirmations and celebrations of human life and human love, even as they challenge us to imagine a daring future for humanity and for ourselves.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Harper Perennial
Pages   208
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.02" Width: 5.41" Height: 0.56"
Weight:   0.5 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Nov 5, 2002
Publisher   Harper Collins Publishers
ISBN  0060937580  
ISBN13  9780060937584  

Availability  103 units.
Availability accurate as of Oct 21, 2017 10:19.
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More About George Weigel

George Weigel GEORGE WEIGEL, Distinguished Senior Fellow of Washington's Ethics and Public Policy Center, is a Catholic theologian and one of America's foremost commentators on issues of religion and public life. A Newsweek contributor and Vatican analyst for NBC News, Weigel is the author of fifteen books, including the New York Times bestseller Witness to Hope: The Biography of Pope John Paul II. His work has been translated into more than a dozen languages.

From the Hardcover edition.

George Weigel currently resides in Bethesda, in the state of Maryland. George Weigel was born in 1951 and has an academic affiliation as follows - Ethics and Public Policy Center, Washington, DC the Ethics and Public.

George Weigel has published or released items in the following series...

  1. Library of Religious Biography
  2. Pennsylvania-German History and Culture Series

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Philosophy > Religious
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Catholicism > General
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Catholicism > Roman Catholicism
4Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Catholicism
5Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Theology > Catholic

Christian Product Categories
Books > Church & Ministry > Church Life > Roman Catholic

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Reviews - What do customers think about The Truth of Catholicism: Inside the Essential Teachings and Controversies of the Church Today?

Clear and Succinct  Mar 31, 2007
Mr. Weigel is a gifted author and this book clearly explains the basis for many Catholic practices and beliefs. I highly recommend it for any Catholic, ex-Catholic or critic of the Catholic Church.
A teaching essential for students of Catholicism  Jan 6, 2005
Thank God someone has finally stepped up to the plate and dared to take on the questions of "What do Catholics actually believe and WHY do Catholics believe this?" in a tone that suggests there might actually be some meaning behind the doctrine of this monumental institution. From the first page, Weigel establishes exactly how he will respond to the ever-present critics and cynics who keep the Catholic Church constantly in their sight: truthfully, carefully, and without apology. What a refreshing change in a cultural climate that suggests the Church exists for something other than the mission on which its foundations were originally established.

While I ultimately love and appreciate the content of this book, especially a light but accessible treatment of the true theology behind Catholic doctrine, I give the book four stars and not five because of a specific detail that, for me, detracts a bit from the overall point of the book. Weigel's clear and undying devotion to Pope John Paul II, a figure who was also the focus of a Weigel biography, clouds any attempt at an objective treatment of problematic doctrinal issues. I think some of the problems that create such cynicsm when it comes to the Church today are glossed over in an attempt to "protect" the portrayal of this man. While I completely understand the intention, this fact does seem to taint some of his credibility in reaching the people who may be questioning some of the decisions of the hierarchy of the Church. While Pope John Paul II has been a great positive force in the Church, he hasn't been the sole positive force in the Church which is a claim that Weigel implies at times.

Overall, this is the best book I've found for answers to some very complex questions. For a faith that, at times, appears completely countercultural, often for no good reason, this book gently but surely straightens out any misconceptions and paints a reasonable picture of the thought behind the belief.
Apologetics with Panache  Sep 13, 2004
Weigel explains the ten "controversies" that critics of the Faith usually challenge Catholics to defend, e.g., the all-male priesthood, the Church's teaching on sexuality, and the Church as the sacrament of salvation.

In less than two hundred pages, he provides succinct, faithful explanations footnoted to official documents like the Cathecism of the Catholic Church.

This book is highly recommended to the lightly-catechized as a way to explore the Faith "from the inside", as Evelyn Waugh once put it, and to other Catholics seeking a chartitable way of explaining truths to critics both inside and outside the Church.
Truth if You Already Believe  Aug 21, 2004
Weigel's book is a good introductory book to Catholicism, its assumptions, beliefs and theology. On the other hand, it assumes the answers and then creates a structure and rationalization to support those answers, which in my view sums up both the major strength and weakness of religious thought. By adopting this technique religion lets men and woman step outside of themselves and judge themselves and the world more objectively. Let me suggest an analogy A friend has a personal crises which is eating him up. You give him or her advice which you know is good advice and she knows is good advice. Indeed if the circumstances were reversed, he'd give you the same advice. The problem is that knowing the facts objectively and knowing how one should react objectively doesn't make it happen. The most difficult thing for a person to do is to step outside his or her own skin and then take action as if they were someone else. It is too hard to separate emotions and objectivity. What religion does is help someone to do just this, to look into a mirror and see ourselves as we would see another person facing the same questions and crises.
Where is the gospel?  Apr 21, 2003
Whether you like this book will depend on how central you believe the gospel is to Catholicism. This book struck me as an exercise in apologetics for Pope John Paul II and Cardinal Ratzinger. There was very little of the gospel to be found.

I bought the book on the basis of the welcoming introduction, "An invitation to come inside", which echoed the warmth & welcome of most congregations I know. After a few chapters, though, I felt the doors were clanging shut behind me.

The book is well-written and is a good exposition of the positions of the current leadership of the church and how some of its more controversial positions have developed. Taking that into account, I gave it 3 stars. However, because of its uncritical acceptance of an extremely culture-bound understanding of catholicism, without relating it to the touchstone of the gospels, please read with caution. Read the New Testament instead.


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