Item description for Leadership in the Church: How Traditional Roles Can Help Serve the Christian Community Today by Walter Kasper...
Overview This is a timely and profound look at the enduring meaning of church office, and the guidance it is called to provide to the church in light of a changed world and a changing future. Includes essays on how the church offices arose, how they are defined, and how they relate to one another. Major themes include: the universal vs. local church, the ministry of the bishop, priest and deacon, apostolic succession and the practical application of canonical norms.
Citations And Professional Reviews Leadership in the Church: How Traditional Roles Can Help Serve the Christian Community Today by Walter Kasper has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
Commonweal - 01/16/2004 page 28
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Studio: The Crossroad Publishing Company
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.64" Width: 5.48" Height: 0.84" Weight: 0.85 lbs.
Release Date Aug 1, 2003
Publisher Herder & Herder
ISBN 0824519779 ISBN13 9780824519773
Availability 0 units.
More About Walter Kasper
Cardinal Walter Kasper is a German cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church. He is president Emeritus of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. Since the death of Carlo Maria Martini, he has become one of the main figures of the liberal wing of the Catholic Church.
Reviews - What do customers think about Leadership in the Church: How Traditional Roles Can Help Serve the Christian Community Today?
Tradition and Renewal of Catholic Church Leadership Aug 25, 2004
Difficulty and scandal are nothing new in God's church. This latest scandal of child abuse is especially troubling and threatens to injure the credibility of the U.S. Catholic church for generations to come.
No serious thinking person will deny that a measure of reform and renewal is needed to restore confidence and integrity to the Catholic community. What should we do? Where should we look? Can traditional roles and the wisdom they offer help us or must we change the church radically as we know it?
In Leadership in the Chirch, Cardinal Walter Kasper, (a distinguished theologian, Bishop and now President of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity), argues that traditional roles properly understood can continue to serve the Christian community well today. He makes these arguments in a series of 7 essays that collectively ride under the title of his book.
In the essay "The Diaconate", Kasper reviews the history of the Diaconate noting its rise, its lapse after the Council of Trent and its renewal at Vatican II. Kasper calls for greater understanding and use of this ancient and important office to relieve priests and bishops of certain duties given the worldwide shortage of priests.
His advice and insights on priestly and episcopal office are the second and third essays. Kasper calls on priests and bishops to remember that they are representatives of Christ and servants rather than officeholders and power-seekers. If you want to know what should be expected of a shepard--be he bishop or priest--these essays are required reading for all.
The essay on apostolic succession breaks no new ground, nor should it. While it is an ecumenical problem, the recent ordination of a gay man as an Episcopal bishop makes a common understanding very difficult.
Canon law is for most an arcane topic and only a tiny fraction of laypersons have any understanding of its use. But this essay is important reading in light of the child abuse scandals and abuse of authority by some American bishops. Kasper rightly critizes its overly legalistic use since the 1300's. The true purpose of Canon Law is to promote mercy and justice. As bad as the sex abuse scandals were in selected churches across the United States, a strong argument can be made that some priests (those guilty of only an isolated incident many years ago), were treated unfairly. Canon law is being applied unjustly to them. What happened to mercy?
Most reviewers will seize on the famous essay number 6 titled "The Universal Church and the Local Church" because of Kasper's disagreement with Cardinal Ratsinzer regarding the relationships between the local and the universal church. Kasper questions Ratsinzer's claims regarding the degree to which the universal church is primary over the local church.
Finally, Kasper sums up with reflections on the future of ecumenism and its implications for Catholics, Jews, Protestants and others.
German theologians can be difficult to read but Kasper's writing is clear and elegant and Brian McNeil's English transalation from the original German is superior.
A well-reasoned discourse reflecting a lifetime of piety Dec 7, 2003
Written by theologian Walter Cardinal Kasper (University of Tubingen), and ably translated into English by Brian McNeil, Leadership In The Church: How Traditional Roles Can Serve The Christian Community Today forthrightly addresses many of the most pressing questions facing Catholic Church leadership today. Walter Cardinal Kasper is the bishop of the German diocese of Rottenburg-Stuttgart, and has been named to the College of Cardinals by the Pope. Therefore he brings a special expertise to Leadership In The Church when he examines problems in apostolic succession, the application of justice and mercy in canon law, ecumenical points of view concerning the future, and a great deal more. A welcome contribution to Contemporary Catholic Studies reading lists and reference collections, Leadership In The Church is commended as being an especially well-reasoned discourse reflecting a lifetime of piety.