UPDATE 20 March: I am getting emails from people asking how they can get the book I was reading on the airplane yesterday (see that entry). I am reposting this entry for their benefit.
ORIGINAL entry 7 March.
Earlier this week I mentioned in these electronic pages the provocative book by Fr. Aidan Nichols, OP, from Family Publications entitled The Realm: An Unfashionable Essay on the Conversion of England. (Order from Amazon UK click HERE. This doesn’t seem to be available on the USA Amazon now.)
I received a copy of Fr. Nichols’ new work Criticising the Critics: Catholic Apologias for Today, also from Family Publications.
Inexplicably, this is not available through amazon.co.uk … yet. But it is from the aforementioned Family Publications.
Fr. Nichols herein describes and responds to critics both inside and outside the Church.
His chapters are:
- For Modernists (Modernism a Century On)
- For Neo-Gnostics (Challenges to Orthodoxy and Mission)
- For Academic Exegetes (Reading Scripture in the Church)
- For Feminists (How God is Father)
- For Liberal Protestants (How Christ is Priest)
- For Progressive Catholics (The Council and the Gospel of Life)
- For the Erotically Absorbed (on the Nature of Lust)
- For Critics of Christendom (Secularization: A Catholic Response)
This final chapter is a response to the critics of what Nichols proposed in The Realm.
There are end notes, though not extensive, but no index, which is a bit of a drawback.
Led by Pope Benedict we are presently engaged in a struggle concerning our Catholic identity. Those who for the last decades have controlled the narrative about what it means to be Catholic, and controlled it within a very narrow band, are giving way to a new wave of Catholics who are looking at who they are and what they believe in continuity with a far deeper tradition.
This slim book can give Catholics with a growing awareness of who they are a way of identifying both in themselves and in others certain tendencies to which we, as children of our own epoch, are necessarily subject. Framed as a series of brief thematic responses, Nichols’ book will also help us as Catholics in the public square, and no doubt in our families as well, respond to common objections to Holy Church and our membership in her.
Furthermore, it is instructive, far-ranging and amusing. I suspect that you, as I, will read this with pen in hand.
(Of course you may be making your own index as I am doing while I read!)
Another worthy Nichols book:
The Thought of Pope Benedict XVI: An Introduction to the Theology of Joseph Ratzinger
Nichols together with Tracey Rowland’s excellent book will give you a very comprehensive and accurate view of the methodology and thought of Joseph Ratzinger.