Monday, 27 July 2009

ROBINSON: Confronting Power & Sex in the Catholic Church

Robinson, Bishop Geoffrey.
Confronting Power and Sex in the Catholic Church.
Reclainming the Spirit of Jesus

Bishop Robinson was the lead person in the Australiuan Bishops' response to the scandal of clerical abuse in that country, an experience that he found harrowing. After his retirement from active ministry, he found the freedom to write this reflection on his experience and conclusions - in which he found that part of the problem lies right in the heart of the institutional strucutures of the Catholic church, with its unremitting insistence on compulsory celibacy, and overly centralised, hierarchical power strucutres which fail to implement the clear directives of Vatican II.

This thoughtful and thought provoking book goes right to the heart of the problem, and is strongly recommended.

"Drawing on his own experience in responding to abuse, Bishop Geoffrey Robinson in this explosive work methodically offers a critique of the church's use and misuse of power, from the pope proclaiming infallibly down to the preacher claiming a divine authority for every word spoken from the pulpit. Going back to the Bible and, above all, to the teaching of Jesus, he presents an approach to sexual morality that is profound, compassionate, and people-centered. He stresses the priority of the hierarchy of holiness over the hierarchy of power. He offers nothing less than a vision for a church of the third millennium--a church that wants to see in its members the responsibility appropriate to adults rather than the obedience appropriate to children and wants to help all people to grow to become all they are capable of being. You will love or hate this book but not be able to remain neutral."

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