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Sex, Priests, And Power: Anatomy Of A Crisis Hardcover – April 1, 1995

ISBN-13: 978-0876307694 ISBN-10: 0876307691 Edition: 1st

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Sex, Priests, And Power: Anatomy Of A Crisis + A Secret World: Sexuality And The Search For Celibacy + Sex, Priests, and Secret Codes: The Catholic Church's 2,000 Year Paper Trail of Sexual Abuse
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge; 1 edition (April 1, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0876307691
  • ISBN-13: 978-0876307694
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.3 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #880,548 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

For more than 30 years, psychotherapist Sipe has been engaged in research on the institution and practice of priestly celibacy. He has reported and interpreted that research before, but this book takes it as background for a more thorough examination of the entanglement of sexuality and power in the historical development of the Roman Catholic Church. Given the pervasiveness of the entanglement, the book becomes a case study of sorts, with implications beyond the boundaries of Roman Catholicism and beyond the practice of celibacy. Among the most interesting and important aspects of the book is its systematic application of sociobiology to a concrete moral--and political--problem. That sociobiology shares with Roman Catholic theology a profound appreciation for the "natural" as an ethical category makes this a promising venture--and it carries it beyond the potential trivialities of expose{‚} or polemic. This is a thoughtful book, informed not only by the headlines but also by a deep respect for celibacy and for the Roman Catholic tradition as well as the "systemic" insights of sociobiology. Steve Schroeder

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

56 of 71 people found the following review helpful By M KIRK-DUGGAN on August 23, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Sipe offers the first quantatative and qualatative look at the cancer on the American Latin Rite Catholic Church. He offers convincing evidence that 50% of the Latin Rite Priests and Bishops are sexually active, despite the Church's teaching that any and all sexual activity outside of marriage is mortally sinful. Anyone who has been affected by a sexually active priest or bishop needs to read this book to learn that they are not alone. Sipe's careful research is not an attack on celibacy: instead he reinforces the correct theological opinion that celibacy is a divine gift; not a command that must be followed at all times and in all circumstances. Unfortunately, the blurbs on the dust jacket of this book would lead one to conclude that this is a "Maria Monk" exposing lurid secret details of the priesthood for the prurient. Instead it is patient and kind to those seeking an understanding as to why a bishop would publicly defend his homoerotic liason with an embezzeling priest, as a "consensual arrangement between adults!" (Santa Rosa, 8/99) One would hope that either or both of his books would be mandatory reading for those enrolled in Latin Rite seminaries, as well as their mentors. This book deserves as much seminary attention as that presently given to penitentials. Sipe notes the failure of the Rite of Reconcilliation (Confession) for troubled priests and their victims. Perhaps this is because the Confessional as practiced today is inherently Manichean: it separates the sinful acts from the human creature's entire being. Many current 12th Step programs remedy this defect of ordinary practice, by requiring complete inventories, assets as well as liabilities.Read more ›
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11 of 15 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 29, 2003
Format: Hardcover
It's not about sex. It's about power according to this author. He backs up his claim with historical evidence: the Church's mistreatment of women, and Jews, for example. Included are chilling quotes from the Malleus Malificarum used as a training book in seminaries for two centuries. The Malleus, used to train priests, sounds like the ravings of a madman, and it no doubt was...
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Anne Lapuh on March 25, 2006
Format: Hardcover
This book contained some very interesting ideals. The philosophy in the book was way over my head. Much of it seemed redundant to me I'm sure because I didn't understand it. It certainly offerred insight into the priesthood from the local parish to Rome.
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