Cross Currents

William Birmingham, Editor, Joseph Cunneen, Foreword by
William Birmingham, Editor, Joseph Cunneen, Foreword by Crossroad Publishing Company $19.95 (327p) ISBN 978-0-8245-0956-9
Reviewed on: 12/01/1997
Release date: 12/01/1997
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Fifteen essays originally published in Cross Currents appear in general support of journal editor Birmingham's startlingly ``unqualified contention'' that the Church and its constituents would benefit from ``meeting the `world' on an equal footing with no privilege of place being given to or claimed by Christianity.'' The strongest advocate of this position here is Raimundo Panikkar, who persuades that the Church cannot simultaneously maintain its status as ``chosen'' and its claims of universality. Similarly, Vincent Harding offers an incisive rebuttal to the common portrayal of Christians as a body of white, middle-class men, showing the damages wrought, the opportunities lost by such narrow thinking. A few essays are fatuously argued--for example, anthropologist Everett H. Hagen offers the novels of Mary Renault as ``proof'' that the ancients were no less happy than we. Others are addressed only to fellow believers: the Church ``is in reality ours because whether we will or no, we belong to her and we have sinned in her'' (Karl Rahner). (Jan.)
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