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Call of God, The

Women Doing Theology in Peru

Based on conversations with women in one of the poorest neighborhoods in Lima, Peru, The Call of God explores how their faith provides them with an understanding amidst extreme poverty, violence, and displacement. Peru was the birthplace of liberation theology and the poor women of that country were instrumental in its original elucidation. This book introduces the women of El Agustino, where a diverse, dedicated and eloquent group have set out to answer questions, solve problems, and rebuild a society stricken with rampant inflation and terrorism, all in response to the call of God. Without much formal education, these women possess and espouse complex theological propositions with a high degree of independence and proficiency. A careful reading reveals an education of a different sort—one rooted in life’s changing experiences; one directed toward a different liberation.

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Can Only One Religion Be True?

Paul Knitter and Harold Netland in Dialogue

edited by Robert B. Stewart

This volume highlights points of agreement and disagreement on the subject of religious pluralism. The dialogue partners in the discussion are Paul F. Knitter, Paul Tillich Professor of Theology, World Religions, and Culture at Union Theological Seminary, and Harold A Netland, professor of Mission and Evangelism and director of Intercultural Studies at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois.

A transcript of the March 2009 Point-Counterpoint event between Knitter and Netland allows the reader to see how each presents his position in light of the others, as well as their responses to selected audience questions. The balance of the volume is comprised of substantive essays on various facets of the question of religious pluralism from a diverse set of scholars. The Greer Heard Point-Counterpoint series takes pride in presenting a fair and balanced case for both sides of complex issues, and in providing the tools for students and scholars to form their own conclusions.

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Capital Punishment and Roman Catholic Moral Tradition, Second Edition

E. Christian Brugger

Why is the Catholic Church against the death penalty? This second edition of Brugger’s classic work Capital Punishment and Roman Catholic Moral Tradition traces the doctrinal path the Church has taken over the centuries to its present position as the world’s largest and most outspoken opponent of capital punishment. The pontificate of John Paul II marked a watershed in Catholic thinking. The pope taught that the death penalty is and can only be rightly assessed as a form of self-defense. But what does this mean? What are its implications for the Church’s traditional retribution-based model of lethal punishment? How does it square with what the Church has historically taught? Brugger argues that the implications of this historic turn have yet to be fully understood. In his new preface, Brugger examines the contribution of the great Polish pope’s closest collaborator and successor in the Chair of Peter, Pope Benedict XVI, to Catholic thinking on the death penalty. He argues that Pope Benedict maintained the doctrinal status quo of his predecessor’s teaching on capital punishment as self-defense, with detectable points of reluctance to draw attention to nontraditional implications of that teaching.

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Carnal Knowledge of God

Embodied Love and the Movement for Justice

by Rebecca M. M. Voelkel

Theologian, pastor, and seasoned activist Rebecca Voelkel offers a theological vision of embodied love, informed by her own experience, research, and pastoral and organizing work with gay, lesbian, transgender, and gender-queer persons. Voelkel lays out a theological vision interwoven with wisdom from social change “movement building,” offering principles that will enable allies to work strategically in the coming “progressive wave.”

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A Case for Character

Towards a Lutheran Virtue Ethics

by Joel D. Biermann

Over the last several decades, perceptive observers of Western civilization have documented what virtually everyone has perceived: as the old foundations of society have toppled, morality and personal character have been set adrift and often vanished altogether. How can character be cultivated when it seems no one is willing or able to provide a definitive description of character to which humans should aspire?

Equipped with explicit texts and a rich heritage detailing the content of human character, it would seem that Christianity is ideally positioned to address this problem.

Yet even the church has often been complicit in undermining and eviscerating a rich, meaningful account of character.

While the reasons for this are many and complicated, one of the more potent singular factors is actually theological. Contemporary Lutheranism, in particular, has struggled with the appropriate place of morality and character formation, as these pursuits often have been perceived as at odds with the central Christian doctrine of justification.

A Case for Character explores this problem and argues that Christian doctrine, specifically as articulated within a Lutheran framework, is altogether capable of encouraging a robust pursuit of character formation while maintaining a faithful expression of justification by grace alone through faith alone.

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Catholic Identity or Identities?

Refounding Ministries in Chaotic Times

Gerald A. Arbuckle

How can Catholic leaders effectively train and form members of our institutions in the Gospel values that are the ultimate foundation of Catholic identities?Internationally recognized author, educator, and facilitator Gerald A. Arbuckle argues that it is time to acknowledge that the programs and processes used in the past are inadequate to our postmodern age. The systems previously used to educate the staffs of our hospitals, universities, schools, and other institutions rarely succeed today. Although didactic teaching and discursive learning have their place, they cannot be the primary method for forming identities.Catholic Identity or Identities? will assist a wide range of people- bishops, theologians, pastoral workers, institutional leaders and staffs, and more-in their various ministries. Arbuckle draws on several disciplines, including Scripture, theology, and history, but in particular cultural anthropology, to explain the importance of refounding adult formation for Catholic ministries and the practical ways to achieve it.

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Catholic Social Teaching and Pope Benedict XVI

Charles E. Curran

Celebrated moral theologian Charles E. Curran examines and critiques Pope Benedict XVI's contribution to Catholic social teaching in this Georgetown Digital Short, available exclusively in this concise digital format. In his eight-year pontificate (2005-13) Pope Benedict XVI wrote two encyclicals that are significant for Catholic social teaching: Deus caritas est (God Is Love) in 2005, and Caritas in veritate (Charity In Truth) in 2009. Curran analyzes and compares the teaching proposed in these two encyclicals, given that these two documents reflect differing approaches. He explores presuppositions found in Caritas in veritate within the tradition of Catholic social teaching and discusses the theological, ethical, and ecclesial methodologies of the encyclical. Examining the substance and content of Caritas in veritate and its relationship to Catholic social teaching, Curran focuses on its approach to the person, political and civil society, and specific issues and topics. This is the first exploration of Pope Benedict XVI's impact on Catholic social teaching.

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Catholicism and Citizenship

Political Cultures of the Church in the Twenty-First Century

Massimo Faggioli

The beginning of the twenty-first century has provided abundant evidence of the necessity to reexamine the relationship between Catholicism and the modern, global world. This book tries to proceed on this path with a focus on the meaning, legacy, and reception in today’s world of the ecclesiology of Vatican II, starting with Gaudium et Spes: “This council exhorts Christians, as citizens of two cities, to strive to discharge their earthly duties conscientiously and in response to the Gospel spirit.” Catholicism and Citizenship is a call for a rediscovery of the moral and political imagination of Vatican II for the Church and the world of our time.

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Changing Horizons

Explorations in Feminist Interpretation

by Elisabeth Schüssler Fiorenza

Changing Horizons is the second of two volumes highlighting the ways in which Elisabeth Schüssler Fiorenza’s work constructs a critical feminist theory and praxis of liberation, in relation to the biblical text and its legacy, and in relation to the theological and ecclesial setting of today. In these essays collected from her extraordinary career, Schüssler Fiorenza attempts to free both biblical studies and theology from disciplinary constraints and assumptions that have allowed them to acquiesce and even perpetuate forms of oppression—from racism and poverty to colonialism and gender equality.

While Schüssler Fiorenza’s feminist critical approach begins with the experience of women, that experience is appropriated through the lens of critical theory and a critical understanding of social and religious oppressions. It is, further, political in its aim to dethrone kyriarchal structures and foment genuinely egalitarian community in church and society.

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