The Catholic Church and "Dissenting" Theologians

A Listmania! list by Steven H Propp (Sacramento, CA USA)
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
The list author says: "Under John XXIII, the legendary "Spirit of Vatican II" was thought to be the beginning of a new era, in which change would be welcomed in the Catholic Church---including theological change.

However, after the 1968 birth control encyclical "Humanae Vitae," some MASSIVE changes in society as a whole, and the ascendancy of the dynamic John Paul II to the Papacy (with Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger as the theological "enforcer"), things changed. There is a Catechism of the Catholic Church, Cardinal Ratzinger has become Benedict XVI, and theological dissenters from the traditional teaching have been disciplined, excommunicated, and otherwise made to feel unwelcome.

(Of course, when one participates in a hierarchical organization such as the Catholic Church, one must grant the hierarchy the power---whether or not one concedes the justification---to exercise its authority; this applies to Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, as well as to Hans Kung.)

Here are some of the theologians who have suffered censure from the Catholic Church, and some books about their battles with the Church; read for yourself, and decide."
Mary and Human Liberation: The Story and the Text
1.  Mary and Human Liberation: The Story and the Text by Tissa Balasuriya
The list author says:
  "Father Balasuriya was excommunicated in 1997, then reinstated a year later, over this book."
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Church, charism and power: Liberation theology and the institutional church
2.  Church, charism and power: Liberation theology and the institutional church by Leonardo Boff
The list author says:
  "Brazilian liberation theologian and priest was  ordered to keep ‘obedient silence’ in 1985 after this book was published, and he resigned from the priesthood in 1991."
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The Path to Hope: Fragments from a Theologian's Journey
3.  The Path to Hope: Fragments from a Theologian's Journey by Leonardo Boff
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The Silencing of Leonardo Boff: The Vatican and the Future of World Christianity
4.  The Silencing of Leonardo Boff: The Vatican and the Future of World Christianity by Harvey Gallagher Cox
The list author says:
  "Prominent Protestant theologian Harvey Cox gives a history of the whole matter."
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Women at the Altar
5.  Women at the Altar by Lavinia Byrne
The list author says:
  "In 1998, Cardinal Ratzinger ordered 1,300 copies of Sister Byrne’s book burned; she has since resigned from her Order, and is now teaching at a Protestant theological school."
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The Modern Inquisition: Seven Prominent Catholics and Their Struggles with the Vatican
6.  The Modern Inquisition: Seven Prominent Catholics and Their Struggles with the Vatican by Paul Collins
The list author says:
  "In this book, Father Collins details his own struggles with the Church over his book "Papal Power," and the struggles of six other theologians.  In 2001, Collins resigned from  active priestly ministry."
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3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

FAITHFUL DISSENT
7.  FAITHFUL DISSENT by Charles E. Curran
The list author says:
  "Father Curran's memoirs, including his conflict with the Church over his support of birth control, etc."
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Curran Vs. Catholic University: A Study of Authority and Freedom in Conflict
8.  Curran Vs. Catholic University: A Study of Authority and Freedom in Conflict by Larry Witham
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Vatican Authority and American Catholic Dissent: The Curran Case and Its Consequences
9.  Vatican Authority and American Catholic Dissent: The Curran Case and Its Consequences by William W. May
The list author says:
  "Covers the Curran case."
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A Violent God-Image: An Introduction to the Work of Eugen Drewermann
10.  A Violent God-Image: An Introduction to the Work of Eugen Drewermann by Matthias Beier
The list author says:
  "Drewermann was prohibited from teaching at his seminary in 1992, and then had his license to preach revoked shortly after that."
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Toward a Christian Theology of Religious Pluralism
11.  Toward a Christian Theology of Religious Pluralism by Jacques Dupuis
The list author says:
  "Cardinal Ratzinger had Dupuis suspended from Gregorian University for this book."
$35.58   Used & New from: $3.75
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

New Inquisition?: Schillebeeckx and Kung
12.  New Inquisition?: Schillebeeckx and Kung by Peter Hebblethwaite
The list author says:
  "Hebblethwaite (author of acclaimed biographies of Popes John XXIII and Paul VI) discusses the situations of Edward Schillebeeckx & Hans Küng."
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The Church
13.  The Church by Hans Kung
The list author says:
  "Küng has been prominent during Vatican II, but this book began the process of  his "investigation.""
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Infallible?: An inquiry
14.  Infallible?: An inquiry by Hans Kung
The list author says:
  "This book was the one that resulted in Kung's losing his status as a "Catholic theologian."  (Ironically, this resulted in an astronomical rise in his popularity and fame.)"
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My Struggle for Freedom: Memoirs
15.  My Struggle for Freedom: Memoirs by Hans Kung
The list author says:
  "First part of his memoirs, covering the pre-censure days."
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Disputed Truth: Memoirs Volume 2
16.  Disputed Truth: Memoirs Volume 2 by Hans Kung
The list author says:
  "Covers the period of censure."
$31.14   Used & New from: $1.86
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

Kung in Conflict
17.  Kung in Conflict by Hans Kung
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The Kung Dialogue: Facts and Documents
18.  The Kung Dialogue: Facts and Documents by United States Catholic Conference
The list author says:
  "Older book that supports the Church's viewpoint."
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God: In Fragments
19.  God: In Fragments by Jacques Marie Pohier
The list author says:
  "This French theologian  had his license to teach theology revoked in 1979, and even his right to celebrate the Mass was removed; then he was pressured to leave the Dominican order entirely."
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Putting Away Childish Things
20.  Putting Away Childish Things by Uta Ranke-Heinemann
The list author says:
  "The first female professor of Catholic Theology in Germany, who was removed from her chair because she taught that Mary’s virgin birth should be interpreted symbolically."
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Jesus: An Experiment in Christology
21.  Jesus: An Experiment in Christology by Edward Schillebeeckx
The list author says:
  "Although far from "radical" in context of, say, the Jesus Seminar, this book got Schillebeeckx in trouble."
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Authority in the Church and the Schillebeeckx Case
22.  Authority in the Church and the Schillebeeckx Case by Leonard Swidler
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The Language of Dissent: Edward Schillebeeckx on the Crisis of Authority in the Catholic Church
23.  The Language of Dissent: Edward Schillebeeckx on the Crisis of Authority in the Catholic Church by Daniel Speed Thompson
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Three Brothers: A Novel about Change and Diversity in the Catholic Church
24.  Three Brothers: A Novel about Change and Diversity in the Catholic Church by Steven H. Propp
The list author says:
  "Three brothers representing three distinct perspectives on the Church debate many issues, including the silencing of theologians."
$26.96   Used & New from: $11.67

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Steven H Propp (Sacramento, CA USA)
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
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Last updated: 2/8/10
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