Item description for One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic: The Early Church Was the Catholic Church by Kenneth D. Whitehead & K. D. Whitehead...
Overview Very often in the history of Christianity, "reformers", by whatever name, have aspired to return to "the early Church". The Church of their own day, for whatever reason, fails to live up to what they think Christianity should be: in their view there has been a falling away from the beautiful ideals of the early Church. Kenneth Whitehead shows in this book how the early Church has, in fact, not disappeared, but rather has survived and persisted, and is with us still. "Reformers" are not so much the ones needed by this Church as are those who aspire to be saints-to follow Christ seriously and always to fulfill God's holy will by employing the means of sanctification which Christ continues to provide in the Church. Whitehead shows how the visible body which today bears the name "the Catholic Church" is the same Church which Christ established to carry on and perpetuate in the world his Words and his Works-and his own divine Life-and to bring salvation and sanctification to all mankind. Despite superficial differences in certain appearances, the worldwide Catholic Church today remains the same Church that was originally founded by Jesus Christ on Peter and the other apostles back in the first century in the ancient Near East. The early Church, in other words, was always!-nothing else but-the Catholic Church.
Publishers Description Very often in the history of Christianity, "reformers", by whatever name, have aspired to return to "the early Church". The Church of their own day, for whatever reason, fails to live up to what they think Christianity should be] in their view there has been a falling away from the beautiful ideals of the early Church.
Kenneth Whitehead shows in this book how the early Church has, in fact, not disappeared, but rather has survived and persisted, and is with us still. "Reformers" are not so much the ones needed by this Church as are those who aspire to be saints -- to follow Christ seriously and always to fulfill God's holy will by employing the means of sanctification which Christ continues to provide in the Church.
Whitehead shows how the visible body which today bears the name "the Catholic Church" is the same Church which Christ established to carry on and perpetuate in the world his Words and his Works -- and his own divine Life -- and to bring salvation and sanctification to all mankind. Despite superficial differences in certain appearances, the worldwide Catholic Church today remains the same Church that was originally founded by Jesus Christ on Peter and the other apostles back in the first century in the ancient Near East. The early Church, in other words, was always -- nothing else but -- the Catholic Church.
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Studio: Ignatius Press
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.53" Width: 4.78" Height: 1.04" Weight: 0.95 lbs.
Release Date Oct 7, 2000
Publisher Ignatius Press
ISBN 0898708028 ISBN13 9780898708028 UPC 008987080282
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More About Kenneth D. Whitehead & K. D. Whitehead
Kenneth D. Whitehead is a former career diplomat who served in Rome and the Middle East and as the chief of the Arabic Service of the Voice of America. For eight years he served as executive vice president of Catholics United for the Faith. Later, after rejoining the government in the Reagan Administration, he rose to become a United States Assistant Secretary of Education for Postsecondary Education. He now works as a writer, editor, and translator in Falls Church, Virginia. He is the author of dozens of articles on political, moral, social, and theological issues; and of eight books, including, most recently, One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic: The Early Church Was the Catholic Church (Ignatius Press, 2000) and Political Orphan: The Prolife Cause after 25 Years of Roe v. Wade (New Hope Publications, 1998). His latest book, What Vatican II Did Right: Forty Years after the Council and Counting, is forthcoming from Ignatius Press.He is also the co-author of Flawed Expectations: The Reception of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (Ignatius Press, 1996; co-authored with Msgr. Michael J. Wrenn); and he is the translator of twenty books from French, German or Italian. He is also the editor of a number of volumes, including, most recently, The Catholic Citizen (2004) and The Church, Marriage, and the Family (2006), both published by Saint Augustine's Press, South Bend, Indiana. Educated at the University of Utah and the University of Paris, Mr. Whitehead holds an honorary doctorate in Christian letters from the Franciscan University of Steubenville. He is a recipient of the Cardinal Wright Award from the Fellowship of Catholic Scholars and of the Blessed Frederick Ozanam Award from the Society of Catholic Social Studies. He is married to the former Margaret O?Donohue, a professional parish Director of Religious Education (DRE), currently serving at Holy Spirit Church in Annandale, Virginia. They are the parents of four grown sons.
Reviews - What do customers think about One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic: The Early Church Was the Catholic Church?
A Good Introductory Apologetic Jul 7, 2006
Whitehead aspires to write for the common believer who wishes to have an introduction into the validity of the Church's claim to be "One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic" according to the Niceno-Constantinopolitan Creed. The text is a good introduction into this material, its development and history in Church thought.
The number of names and heresies is nearly head-spinning if one does not have a great grasp on early Church history. Because of this, I think that an extra index should exist with the names of the individuals written about along with a brief explanation of their stance (with textual cross references). Such cross-references would be nicely added to the already existing heresy index. This is mostly a nice addition, as an index does exist for the text.
I must also agree with the complaints of other reviewers about the lack of footnotes. However, this is a minor issue, as the text is not meant to be technical but to be an apologetic help.
I think the text is good for all who want to have a better view of the early Church and do not have a thorough knowledge thereof. It is an easy read, although a bit factually overwhelming for the non-historians, even if you are somewhat-experienced in theology. The author can be a bit pedantic, reminding the reader that what he is writing supports his thesis and also is a bit heavy on the proof for the primacy of Rome in the early Church, while neglecting other topics related to the creedal formula. Nonetheless, I suggest this book highly, as stated above!
Informative for me Nov 21, 2005
I had purchased this book when it first came out, but just now got around to reading it. I thought it was going to be a rehash of Catholic apologetics that I pretty much have a handle on. This book would more appropriately be placed in the history section of your library. I already had a rudimentary knowledge of Church Councils and the various heresies, but after reading this book I am now more knowledgeable of how and why the Councils came about and why the heresies were so dangerous. Whitehead goes into quite a bit of detail on the Arian heresy and just how close Christianity came in denying Christ's divinity.
Only if your mind is closed or you have axes to grind with the Catholic Church will you NOT come away reading this with a better understanding of what the early Christian Church was and give you a better appreciation of what the Church is now.
Well-Structured Apologetics Dec 30, 2004
The central premise of Kenneth Whitehead's 300+ page work is that, despite the protestations of "reformers," the early church was indeed the Catholic Church. The author carefully takes the reader through the early centuries of the Church, exploring the development of the institution and hierarchy from the time of the apostles and the early church fathers through the four great councils, establishing the primacy of Rome from the earliest of times.
The author's arguments are carefully laid out and full developed in a flowing narrative3, offering the reader a systematic exploration of doctrinal developments as well as evidence of papal primacy. One weakness, particularly for those of a more critical bent or for those with a greater intellectual curiosity, is the lack of footnotes to accompany the extensive bibliography. However, given the intended audience, this is a minor criticism, detracting only slightly from what is well-crafted prose. The combination of scriptural, doctrinal and traditional exposition provides a good overview of the Catholic Church's apostolic roots.
Destined to be a classic despite bias reviews of it Oct 14, 2003
Keneth Whitehead historically based apologetic work on the early church, uses history to show the early church was in fact the Catholic church in all essential respects. I am writing this review to show how previous reviewers that maligned this book, on the basis of lacking footnoting is total bogus and has more to do with their own biases. I'm a former Graduate student in Political Science at the University of Central Oklahoma. Political Science scholarship often used Parethical text citation instead of footnoting. While it is true Mr. Whitehead's book does not use footnoting, his sources are well documented. The structure of the book is composed of four chapters and a conclusion. Chapter One is "Church of the Apostles". I hardly think footnoting is necessary when quoting the Apostle Paul the author merely documents this as (1 COR 10:17). Anyone even remotely familar with the Bible can recognize this. Chapter two is the "Church of the early Fathers" in which sources are identified in the text such as the classic historians like Eusebius Ecclesiastical History and early church fathers such as Ignatius. Ignatius only wrote seven letters around 107 A.D which are well known even among Protestants, and the book identifies which letter he is quoting from in each case. Anyone with even most limited knowledge of early church fathers can look up the author's references. Similarly when Emperor Constantine Edict of Milan is quoted from, the parethical reference is sufficient. Chapter three is on the "Church of the Four Great Councils" It includes lengthly quotes from Great Church council offical documents. Consider on Pg. 84 of this book being reveiwed, the author quotes a statement made by the Arian Emperor Constantius in 355 A.D as saying "take my will for a canon". This source is cited in the text as (St. Athanasius, History of the Arians, 33). There are many similar examples to this one. This argument about footnoting to attack this book is totally bogus and without foundation. It is made by people with their own biases and agendas. The reason is clear. The final chapter of book and much of the meat of the book on the "Primacy of Rome" in the early centuries is filled with historically damaging information. In particular, the documentary evidence is overwhelming (w/ Page Numbers!) of Eastern Christianity putting themselves to writing in Ecumenical councils recognizing the formal primacy of the Bishop of Rome despite what they and Protestants assert today.
The Development of theOne, Holy, Catholic & Apostolic Church May 10, 2002
Mr. Whitehead provides a convincing case that the early Church was indeed the Catholic Church. Although lacking in footnotes or endnotes, Whitehead adequately describes his sources for his material. Further, he offers a fair critique of many of his sources in both their weaknesses and strengths.
To understand Whitehead's approach, the reader should have an understanding of the development of doctrine for the "kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed - when it is full grown, it becomes a tree."
In its essence, doctrine is not corrupted simply because it develops. Earch Church history is replete with instances whereby the early Church came to understand revelation largely as a result of reproofing heresies that developed in the early Church.
Whitehead's theme is largely developed on the primacy of the Bishop of Rome. Because doctrine develops as men gain a greater understanding of revelation (the Trinity is an excellent example) Whitehead does not make the mistake of arguing that what we know as the papacy today was fully understood or developed in the first four centuries of the Church. However, he provides a highly convincing argument that all the elements of what the Catholic Church claims were there from the beginning and accepted by the universal Church, both East and West.
For anyone seeking to understand the early Church, or the Catholic case for the papacy, this is an excellent resource. Following a read of this work, I encourage the reader to read the source documents themselves.