The Church: The Evolution of Catholicism
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The Church: The Evolution of Catholicism

by Richard P. McBrien
     
 

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“The Church is a lucid, balanced, and readable book—a work of integration that is always reasonable, well informed, honest, and deeply hopeful.”
Commonweal

 

In The Church, renowned religious historian and Vatican expert Richard P. McBrien offers a sweeping history of the evolution of the Roman Catholic

Overview

“The Church is a lucid, balanced, and readable book—a work of integration that is always reasonable, well informed, honest, and deeply hopeful.”
Commonweal

 

In The Church, renowned religious historian and Vatican expert Richard P. McBrien offers a sweeping history of the evolution of the Roman Catholic Church, its influence  and power in an ever-changing world.  From Jesus’s apostle Peter to Pope Benedict XVI, The Church is a remarkable achievement that delves deeply into the past and the future of Christianity’s largest branch—in fact, the largest religious institution in the world—exploring its politics, doctrines, and the way the Roman Catholic Church views itself.

Editorial Reviews

CBA Retailers and Resources
Catholicism expert Richard McBrien offers the first modern history of the Roman Catholic Church. Encyclopedic in scope but accessible and written in laymen’s terms...
Neil Ormerod
As always McBrien’s work is clear, concise and comprehensive in scope. Undoubtedly this book will become a standard ecclesiological reference point for students and teachers alike.
Mary C. Boys
With characteristic clarity, Richard McBrien artfully tells the story of how Catholic theology developed over two millennia. In tracing the insights, conflicts, and fundamentals of Catholic thought, he has provided a superb resource for readers of all traditions.
Neil OrmerodNeil Ormerod
As always McBrien’s work is clear, concise and comprehensive in scope. Undoubtedly this book will become a standard ecclesiological reference point for students and teachers alike.
Sr. Joan Chittister
This is a superb book, as usual. What would we do without this great honest man and his great honest writing?
Commonweal
The Church is a lucid, balanced, and readable book-a work of integration that is always reasonable, well informed, honest, and deeply hopeful.
Christian Bookseller
Catholicism expert Richard McBrien offers the first modern history of the Roman Catholic Church. . . . Encyclopedic is scope, but accessible and written in layman’s terms.
National Catholic Reporter
A work breathtaking in its scope and yet manageable in its presentation.
America Magazine
This distinguished scholar and professor of theology at the University of Notre Dame, candidly sketches out the pastoral challenges to, and the internal tensions within, the church today.
Publishers Weekly

McBrien's outspoken media commentaries on Catholic polity and pronouncements have earned him a loyal following and not a few critics. A theology professor at the University of Notre Dame, he has written 25 books including Catholicism, a 1,344-page theological survey. His newest study looks at one branch of theology, ecclesiology, which he defines as "theological reflection on the nature, mission, ministries, and structures of the Church." In good academic fashion, McBrien organizes his material thoroughly, with frequent introductions, summaries, lists and cross-references that make this an ideal textbook. At the same time, he writes clearly and passionately on topics of general concern such as papal authority, the church's social and political involvement, interfaith relations and the role of the laity. An ardent admirer of the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965), McBrien sets its documents and discussions at the heart of his presentation. Much of the rest of the book, including one breathless 30-page romp through 18 centuries, is either historical context for the Council or a discussion of its effects on the contemporary church. (Sept.)

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Library Journal

McBrien's (theology, Univ. of Notre Dame) encyclopedic text examining Roman Catholicism from both a historical and a pastoral perspective is destined to be the definitive theological work on the topic. McBrien provided a solid base for this balanced and critical treatment of church life in several of his earlier titles, among them Catholicism, Lives of the Popes, and Lives of the Saints. Here, drawing from biblical and patristic sources, he lays out the fundamental issues appropriate to our understanding of ecclesiology, then specifically engages the various historical epochs (e.g., the schism between East and West, the Protestant Reformation, the Counter-Reformation, and issues of papal primacy and infallibility during Vatican I and Vatican II). Monumental in scope, the work clearly articulates the evolving self-understanding of this unique religious body's role and mission. Complete with 70 pages of detailed notes, a helpful glossary, a select bibliography, and a useful index, this superlative, splendidly written text is accessible not only to students and scholars but to anyone interested in understanding the Catholic Church's history and theology from a modern global perspective. Recommended for all libraries.
—John-Leonard Berg

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061245251
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
11/03/2009
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
496
Sales rank:
779,599
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.50(d)

What People are saying about this

Neil OrmerodNeil Ormerod
As always McBrien’s work is clear, concise and comprehensive in scope. Undoubtedly this book will become a standard ecclesiological reference point for students and teachers alike.
Mary C. Boys
With characteristic clarity, Richard McBrien artfully tells the story of how Catholic theology developed over two millennia. In tracing the insights, conflicts, and fundamentals of Catholic thought, he has provided a superb resource for readers of all traditions.
Sr. Joan Chittister
This is a superb book, as usual. What would we do without this great honest man and his great honest writing?

Meet the Author

Richard P. McBrien is Crowley-O'Brien Professor of Theology at the University of Notre Dame. Educated at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, he has also served as president of the Catholic Theological Society of America. A leading authority on Catholicism, he is the bestselling author of Catholicism, Lives of the Popes, and Lives of the Saints, as well as the general editor of The HarperCollins Encyclopedia of Catholicism. Most recently a consultant for ABC News, McBrien offers regular commentary on all the major television networks. He is also a prizewinning syndicated columnist in the Catholic press.

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