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What God allows : the crisis of faith and conscience in one Catholic church

Author: Ivor Shapiro
Publisher: New York : Doubleday, ©1996.
Edition/Format:   Print book : English : 1st edView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
"One typical parish, one pivotal year. A religious educator weighs her feminist views against her duties as a teacher of Catholic doctrine. An orthodox layman launches an attack on what he sees as a wave of moral anarchy. A young priest chooses between his vow of celibacy and his burning need for intimacy. These are some of the people we come to know in What God Allows, journalist Ivor Shapiro's chronicle of a year
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Genre/Form: Church history
Papal documents
Additional Physical Format: Online version:
Shapiro, Ivor, 1953-
What God allows.
New York : Doubleday, ©1996
(OCoLC)605165108
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Ivor Shapiro
ISBN: 0385472935 9780385472937
OCLC Number: 33667033
Description: 307 p. ; 25 cm.
Responsibility: Ivor Shapiro.

Abstract:

"One typical parish, one pivotal year. A religious educator weighs her feminist views against her duties as a teacher of Catholic doctrine. An orthodox layman launches an attack on what he sees as a wave of moral anarchy. A young priest chooses between his vow of celibacy and his burning need for intimacy. These are some of the people we come to know in What God Allows, journalist Ivor Shapiro's chronicle of a year in the life of St. Paul's Church in Kenmore, New York. Among others we encounter: a seventy-year-old divorcee, as devoted to the Mother of God as she is skeptical about the celibate elite that rules her church; a seven-year-old boy, conquering new Nintendo worlds while preparing for his first sacramental confession; a young professional couple, living in the shadow of grief and finding in the church reasons to hope - and to fight." "One parish, one year. Squabbles over authority, quests for inner peace, small victories of faith. In Rome, Pope John Paul II launches a renewed assault on liberal thought and instruction in the church he leads. In Kenmore the much-loved pastor of St. Paul's prepares to end his twelve-year tenure. By year's end, two disillusioned ministry staffers quit the St. Paul's payroll. But beyond the clash of personalities in one parish, the events of this year display the ambiguous power balance that marks today's Catholic Church."

"In these pages, the church is neither target nor stereotype. What God Allows weaves real-life human dramas into a highly readable narrative, vividly portraying a seasoned church's cheerful tenacity in a time of trial. The story touches on (without obsessing over) the issues that divide parishioners from one another and, sometimes, from their sacraments: birth control, divorce, and abortion; celibacy and scandal; orthodoxy and freedom of thought. The author paints a gentle but sardonic portrait of ordinary people with foibles both amusing and annoying - people who seek meaning in a puzzling world, and find it through their decision to believe and to belong." "Through their stories, a picture emerges of what it means to be Catholic in North America at the end of the twentieth century, and of what the church of tomorrow - a church largely without priests - might look like. The author seems in no doubt that the church will survive its current trials in some way. He paints a picture of a faith and sensibility that keep generations of Catholics coming back - or at least keep them (long after they quit showing up at Sunday Mass) Catholics for life. What God Allows helps us understand why, as Jimmy Breslin once said, "there's no such thing as a lapsed Catholic.""--Jacket.

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