Care for the Church and Its Liturgy: Studies of Summorum Pontificum and the Liturgical Thought of Joseph Ratzinger  -     By: William H. Johnston
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Care for the Church and Its Liturgy: Studies of Summorum Pontificum and the Liturgical Thought of Joseph Ratzinger

Liturgical Press / Paperback

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Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 200
Vendor: Liturgical Press
ISBN: 0814662692
ISBN-13: 9780814662694
Availability: In Stock

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Publisher's Description

In July 2007, Pope Benedict XVI issued Summorum Pontificum, designating two "uses" or "forms" of the Roman Rite, declaring the Missal of Paul VI to be the "ordinary form" and the 1962 Missal of John XXIII to be its "extraordinary form." On the same day, the pope also published a letter to bishops, Con Grande Fiducia, to accompany and offer commentary on this motu proprio.

In Care for the Church and Its Liturgy, William H. Johnston offers analysis and commentary on both documents, exploring their meaning, context, purposes, implementation, and implications. Johnston carefully attends to the multiple purposes of the documents themselves and to the various questions related to their implementation, as well as to the complex postconciliar dynamics in the Catholic Church. His approach throughout is appreciative, critical, and constructive.

Johnston’s study embodies respect for dialogue, unity, and charity. It will provide much food for thought and discussion among both academics and pastoral leaders in the years ahead as the church discerns its liturgical way forward, and all those with educational or pastoral responsibility for the liturgy will find it an informative resource and valuable guide for understanding and assessing this still constitutive feature of the Roman Rite.

Author Bio

William H. Johnston is associate professor of pastoral ministry in the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Dayton. He has contributed chapters to Catholic Identity and the Laity (Orbis Books, 2009) and Lay Ecclesial Ministry: Pathways toward the Future (Sheed & Ward/Rowman & Littlefield, 2010). He has worked for many years in parish and liturgical ministry.

Editorial Reviews

"Pope Benedict’s controversial permission for a broader use of the pre–Vatican II Mass receives a pacific treatment in this book. You may not always agree with what William H. Johnston has to say, but he will sit you down and get you to listen."
        Paul Turner
        Pastor, St. Anthony Parish, Kansas City, Missouri
        Facilitator for the International Commission on English in the Liturgy


"The method of the Second Vatican Council in engaging every issue is dialogue.  The issue of the relationship between the ordinary and extraordinary forms of the Roman Rite of eucharistic celebration is addressed in William Johnston’s book by placing in dialogue all the partners in the liturgical reform, alive and dead.  He does this to achieve a balance in the worship of the Church, not allowing it to be captured by a single viewpoint or argument.  Care for the Church and Its Liturgy is a much-needed contribution to liturgical renewal."
Francis Cardinal George, OMI
Archbishop of Chicago


As I studied the author's commentary and reflections on the documents, I was amazed by the evenhandedness with which he covered this contemporary contentious material. Throughout the work his approach is irenic, discursive, and thought provoking. . . . Johnston's objective is dialogue, not confrontation; mutual understanding, not competition. Throughout the book he demonstrates his personal care for the church and its liturgy.

Thomas A. Krosnicki, SVD, Mount Grace, St. Louis, Missouri, Worship

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