Why Priests?: A Failed Tradition

Why Priests?: A Failed Tradition

by Garry Wills


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780143124399
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 01/28/2014
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 517,126
Product dimensions: 8.90(w) x 5.90(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Garry Wills is an adjunct professor and cultural historian in the Department of History at Northwestern Universityand the author of Lincoln at Gettysburg, for which he won a Pulitzer Prize.

Michael Prichard has recorded well over five hundred audiobooks and was named one of SmartMoney magazine's Top Ten Golden Voices. His numerous awards and accolades include an Audie Award and several AudioFile Earphones Awards.

Date of Birth:

May 22, 1934

Place of Birth:

Atlanta, GA


St. Louis University, B.A., 1957; Xavier University, M.A., 1958; Yale University, Ph.D., 1961

Table of Contents

Key to Brief Citations xi

Introduction 1

I Priest Power: The Eucharist 5

1 A Priestless Movement 7

2 Holy Men 20

3 The Eucharistic Miracle 34

4 Explaining the Miracle: Aquinas 43

5 Explaining the Miracle: Augustine 54

II Jesus the Non-Priest 69

6 Killer Priests 71

7 The Melchizedek Myth 82

8 Higher Melchizedeks 96

9 Melchizedek and Jesus 107

III Letter to Hebrews 117

10 What Is It? 119

11 What Does It Mean? 130

12 A New High Priest 142

IV Jesus as Sacrifice 159

13 Human Sacrifice 161

14 Who Killed Jesus? 173

V Jesus as Rescuer 189

15 The Saving Trinity 191

16 Christ as Comrade 203

VI Monopoly on the Sacred 215

17 Priestly Imperialism 217

18 The Lord's Supper(s) 241

Envoi 256

Acknowledgments 261

Appendix I Translating Hebrews 263

Appendix II Letter to Hebrews 271

Index 291

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"Clearly a thought-provoker destined to inspire debate." —-Library Journal

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Why Priests?: A Failed Tradition 2.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 13 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
All catholocs should read this with an open mind , mosyt what we have been taught about the catholic church has come from the institutional church, in which we are made to believe all we learn is the true word of God and we may be in a state of sin if we think otherwise, As an 80 year old Catholic, i welcome scholarly disussion such as prposed in this book, I too have known many priest's whohave had a major positive impact onmy life. And i sincerely thank them,
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Gary Wills' newest book," Why Priests?", is a work of courage and erudition. While many of the points have begun to be discussed in the past 40 years, he brings them together in a clear and compelling format. This format should be a "jumping off" place for all scholars and hierarchs concerned with Christian survival. About 25 years ago, the Jesuit theologian, Bernard Lonergan, stated that what was troubling the Catholic Church was not a crisis of faith, but a crisis of culture. Professor Wills shows how the Church departed from its founding principles under the stress of late Roman Empire and medieval pressures. Since that time it can be shown that the ordinary lay Catholic was not provided with very many facets of spirituality. This ordinary Christian simply attended what had become a clericalized liturgy as an observer and listener. Gary Wills has accepted the renewal challenge of Vatican II and laid it at the feet of the present day leaders. Will they accept it?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Mr. Wills does an excellent historical presentation of priesthood, especially from the Letter to the Hebrews. Overall there appears a mild axe grinding however. I did not feel this in any of his other books. In a way he attacks the clerical culture throughout.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Unless you're a theologian, or in divinity school, or something like that... this is not the book for you. You can't get much drier than this book! He spends too much of the book diving DEEP into the book of Hebrews. I am still reading this, if for nothing else, but just to see when he will get back to his point (or get back to it, as the case may be; frankly, I've forgotten.) He spends an entire section (three chapters) on the book of Hebrews; that is in addion to the 3 of 4 chapters in the previous section. Also be aware that most of the bibical quotes are his own traslation from greek.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Habakkuk More than 1 year ago
Despite his seminary training Wills has a paucity of knowledge about othodox Cathocism. He as a moral issue with the Church and in this pseudo intellectual vent inflicts his revenge on the Chrch he does not really know
beenblessedx5 More than 1 year ago
He really needs to study the faith he professes to know.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am Catholic and proud of it. Dont bash a religion because some people might actually practice it in a different way than you. Everyone is different. Lets just embrace it instead of bashing it people. I love being different! Just a philosophy for the day...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
More anti-Catholic junk. A thorough reading of scripture and the Church Fathers demonstrates the priesthood has existed from the beginning, although it may have been called by a different name. Again, we are assaulted by shoddy scholarship and told it's "the truth". Furthermore, I offended that it's in the "Catholicism" category. Don't waste your time reading this collection of personal bias.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The author supports every argument with an of ease of greatness, belonging to both writer and scholar. 
Papabile More than 1 year ago
For an author who "seemingly" write from the Roman Catholic perspective, this particular volume of his really "sucks"! It doesn't take much to hear his "let's get back to go" and forget everything that has happened in between. It could have been a good "development-of-doctrine" ... but NOT with his "ass-backwards" presentation and conclusions separate from our Church's practice. Regrettably, the RATING DISTRIBUTION doesn't have a negative number.