From Publishers Weekly
In 1970, the Jesuit priest Robert Drinan was elected to Congress after famously running as an antiwar candidate; he served for a decade, opposing the encroachment of U.S. military forces into Cambodia and actively calling for President Nixon's impeachment. Schroth's workmanlike biography carefully and lovingly chronicles Drinan's life and work, from his childhood and youth in Massachusetts through his development into a passionate advocate for civil rights and ecumenical dialogue, especially between Christians and Jews, and as a moral architect for change in America. Although Drinan left public office in a controversy over his stated beliefs about abortion, he continued to be involved deeply in affairs that involved politics and religion. In his last major book, Can God and Caesar Coexist? (2004), Drinan reminded us that the right to practice the religion of one's own choice is very new in human history and asked, if this right were enforced, whether or not the world would be spared the violent wars caused by the clash of religious beliefs. Schroth's loving tribute to Drinan restores the late priest-legislator's thoughtful and forceful voice to contemporary religious life.
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Pioneering the path of priest-as-politician during a turbulent era on the modern American political and social landscape, Father Robert F. Drinan, S.J., was elected as a U.S. representative from Massachusetts in 1970. Serving in Congress for 10 years, he managed to stir up controversy on both sides of the aisle and among both Catholics and non-Catholics. An uncompromising social advocate, he vehemently opposed the Vietnam War, vocally called for the impeachment of Richard Nixon, and, perhaps most startling of all for a Catholic priest of his era, supported abortion rights on legal, rather than moral or spiritual, grounds. Whether one agrees or disagrees with his political views, stances, or methods, there is no doubt that the late Drinan was a dedicated priest and a tireless advocate for the socially disenfranchised. Written by a friend and fellow Jesuit, this intriguing portrait in courage provides an intimate glimpse into the heart and soul of a deeply textured spiritual and political groundbreaker. --Margaret Flanagan