Review: “Why Be Catholic?” by Richard Rohr

Thumbs up for Why Be Catholic?: Understanding Our Experience and Tradition by Richard Rohr and Joseph Martos. Religion.

Read for character research. I don’t usually read research books cover to cover, and therefore don’t review them, but this one was slim. I don’t think the authors present a convincing case for answering the title question in the positive; they are too fair-minded and honest, never discussing an ideal without also talking about its failures of execution. Which really makes this a far, far better book than if it had been one-sided. Readable and interesting though I imagine some (who have more involvement in the subject than I) might find Rohr’s point of view divisive.

The Catholic tradition, which is reflected both in its theology and in its worship, is incarnational and sacramental. It takes the world seriously and encourages us to find God in the world. It takes human activity seriously and encourages us to be like Jesus in the world. The Church has consistently taught social justice because it believes that God’s righteousness should be not just talked about but incarnated in the world of human affairs.

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