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The same year that Pope John XXIII surprised the Catholic world with his call for an ecumenical council, Cozzens began his ...
The same year that Pope John XXIII surprised the Catholic world with his call for an ecumenical council, Cozzens began his formal study of theology. As a seminarian he felt the shaking of the priesthood’s foundations. The very face of the priesthood was evolving even as he arrived at his first parish assignment. A generation later, the face of the priesthood continues to reveal new contours, fascinating features, and sadly, some tragic blemishes.
In The Changing Face of the Priesthood, Cozzens takes a long, honest look at the present state of the priesthood. He provides this examination not merely from an empirical, scientific perspective but also from a personal, pastoral perspective. Drawing on clinical data, church documents, and his nearly forty years of pastoral experience, Cozzens gives shape and form to the changing face of the priesthood. Through his reflections he leads readers to both concern and hope for the priesthood of the twenty-first century.
Chapters are “Discovering an Identity,” “Guarding One’s Integrity,” “Loving as a Celibate,” “Facing the Unconscious,” “Becoming a Man,” “Tending the Word,” “Considering Orientation,” “Betraying Our Young,” and “The Changing Face of the Priesthood.”
About the Author: Reverend Donald Cozzens is currently a resident scholar at the Institute for Ecumenical and Cultural Research at St. John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota. He will be joining the religious studies department at John Carroll University, University Heights, Ohio, in the fall of 2002. He is editor of the best-selling and award-winning book The Spirituality of the Diocesan Priest, also published by The Liturgical Press.
Posted October 11, 2003
Cozzens speaks the truth in this work. One cannot but feel for the contemporary Catholic priest and his predicament. One would hope that Church leaders will read this and take its message to heart. The Church could only benefit from Cozzens' analysis.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 24, 2000
Donald R. Cozzens reveals the thoughts and fears of the contemporary Roman Catholic Priest (and Religious). Despite public statements to the contrary, there is a melt-down taking place in the contemporary living and the spiritual life of men and women engaged in the life and ministry of the Church, especially the priest. The problem emmanates from the conflict between aurthority/obedience and conscience/authenticity. Cozzens compares the 'man of the Church' with his 'own man'(page 58). Using comtemporary studies on the subject of the oepdiphal complex, he examines a major flaw in the present day clerical culture of the Church. A similar flaw exists in contemporary business and political culture of any other contemporary non-religious organization. In this writing Cozzens is attempting to help us acknowledge and cope with this cause for melt-down in the Church and in many of society's structures.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 4, 2000
This book, by a respected priest and formator of future priests, is filled with the courage of a man who loves the Church so much that he must speak the truth that he knows. He tackles a subject that has always been spoken of in hushed tones and behind closed doors: the sexuality of the Catholic priest.He is not afraid of confronting the phenomenon of homosexuality among priests and his fears of how this will eventually affect the Church's mission. He draws on his background as a psychologist to suggest ways of helping priests and seminarians to deal in healthy and creative ways with their sexuality...and being celibate at the same time. My only criticism is that the author, although he shows such courage and love, seems reluctant (1) to admit that a priest resigning to marry is actually making a healthy decision, and (2) to admit that the Church needs to make celibacy optional for its priests.His stopping short at this issue, for me, is a mediocre conclusion to a boldly truthful call for honesty among the leadership of the Church. I recommend the book to anyone who is interested or has a stake in the future of the Catholic priesthood.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.