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Catholic Voices: Putting the Case for the Church in the Era of 24-Hour News [Paperback]

Austen Ivereigh , Kathleen Griffin
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

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Book Description

19 Aug 2011
Catholic Voices is a new sort of apologetics. It is based on the briefings by media experts that equipped the team of ordinary Catholics whose presence in the media helped make the visit of Pope Benedict to the UK in September 2010 such an extraordinary PR success for the Church, against all expectations. But Catholic Voices not only prepares the reader for media interviews but to be ready to defend their faith from attack by friends or colleagues at work. It combines arguments and facts with practical media skills, hearing the question behind the question and listening for the positive intention behind the criticisms. It gives insider tips on how to present arguments clearly, compellingly and concisely in a quick-fire atmosphere. It is aimed not just at those speaking into a microphone, but at the parish priest, pastoral assistant, catechist, teacher, student every Catholic who is willing to answer questions on topics in the news and give the reasons for what we believe .

Product details

  • Paperback: 250 pages
  • Publisher: Darton, Longman and Todd (19 Aug 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0232528632
  • ISBN-13: 978-0232528633
  • Product Dimensions: 12.6 x 17.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 379,871 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Austen Ivereigh is a former public affairs director for the Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster, a writer and journalist, a regular contributor to the Guardian and America magazine who appears regularly as a commentator on the Catholic Church for radio and TV news programmes. Kathleen Griffin is an award-winning broadcaster, writer and senior lecturer in Broadcast Media at the University of Brighton. For many years a producer and reporter for BBC Radio 4, her many books include The Forgiveness Formula.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jaw-droppingly good 28 Sep 2011
This is simply the best take on modern Catholic apologetics that you will read - it wraps the timeless mind of The Church in the garments of today's language and concerns.

It is direct but considered, succinct yet steeped in historical and theological support and each chapter simply flows off the pages. The good that it's going to do is easy to see. As a resource it may well become the model for other dioceses and provinces to follow and develop, in languages other than English. If so, let's hope they have plans to reprint, as their readers are bound to make the first print run a sell-out.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Catholic Counter-Cultural Perspective 5 Nov 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Since 9/11, the role of religion in the modern world has become a matter of intense debate. Concerns about the rise of religious fundamentalism has led to the rise of the New Atheism movement, characterised not so much by its positive view of atheism as by its strong (some might say fanatical) anti-theism. The Catholic Church has often been the special target for the scorn and contempt of New Atheists, and such a critical view of Catholicism has spread to wider sections of the general public as a result of the child abuse scandal, and the perception that the Church is opposed to effective action against the spread of AIDS in Africa, as well as the view that the Church is, for outdated reasons, in favour of discrimination against gay people and cohabiting couples on issues such as adoption.
This book, arising out of a desire to ensure that Catholic perspectives were fairly represented in the mass media prior to and during the visit of Pope Benedict to Britain in 2010, is a corrective to such views. It deals with nine key issues: the Church's involvement in politics; homosexuality and contraception (considered together since they both concern the purpose and morality of sex); equality and religious freedom (concerning, among other issues, the status of Catholic adoption agencies); euthanasia and assisted suicide; clerical sex abuse; the stautus of religious (Catholic) schools; defending the unborn; Catholics and AIDS; and Catholic policy towards Protestant clergymen wishing to convert.
In dealing with each issue, the authors recognise the degree to which, at root, Catholics and their critics share a common moral base. The Catholic position is then developed.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
This is a `monumental little book' which expresses with unusual clarity the views of the Catholic Church in some social areas of debate, controversy or current social policy agenda particularly in the UK environment. For Catholic people willing to get help and advice on how to position these topics, this is a great point of reference and advise. The book will not give them a menu of what to say but presents with extraordinary clarity the Catholic positions which very often Catholic people themselves may find difficult to articulate. For non Catholics wishing to understand those positions, this is also a great source, particularly if one has an open mind and is willing to discover how much of the traditional social teaching of the Catholic Church may have been misunderstood. The authors are leaders of the Catholic Voices initiative (likely to become `a movement' in its own right) which was self-generated by a group of people in advance of the Pope's visit to the UK about one year ago. As a result of their success in the articulation of messages and the interaction with the media, this `little' book has now come up. Aside from their role at that historical event, for which they were preparing `media-friendly, camera-ready, ego-free' Catholics able to discuss Catholic matters in a 24/7 media environment, they have done a great job in the articulation of the `Catholic logic' in areas such as homosexuality and contraception, defending the unborn, or Catholics and AIDS, to name some of the chapters of the book. It is fresh air in a world of gratuitous confrontation and fundamentalism of any kind, including the so called `humanism' which is unfortunately often shown in the UK as `angrily inhuman'. Read more ›
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant book, thoroughly recommended 26 Sep 2011
The book, like the project that spawned it, is a thoroughly clear and thoughtful guide which I'm sure will be a vital tool for any Catholics who want to learn more about how to put the Church's views across in the public square, with friends, or in any other situation where they feel called to do so. It is aimed at those Catholics who are often put on the spot with questions, and who can struggle to find answers. Speaking as one such person, I found it to be a brilliant resource.

The book gives a clear rundown of the Catholic Church's views on a number of issues, as well as some brilliant tips for how to keep your head above water in a debate. In both, they achieve the illusive goal of being clear and orthodox, without being either too agressive and over-bearing nor too ineffectual and compromising.

The Catholic Voices project began in the UK as a way of providing ordinary, young lay Catholics to be available - and articulate - during the Pope's visit to the country in 2010. They did a great deal to move the Church's communications forward. Hence, this book is interesting both for its (albeit short) description of how the project went about its business, and for the huge resource it provides in putting forward Catholic viewpoints and tackling common objections and questions.

I bought the book expecting great things, and I wasn't disappointed. One of the best books I have read in a long time, and one which I thorough recommend.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars questions teenagers need answers to
Catholic Voices: Putting the Case for the Church in the Era of 24-Hour News

This excellent book offers a way in to a range of topical issues for parents, young adults or... Read more
Published on 3 April 2012 by mrs c.rodger
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow - very useful
Ever felt on the back foot about bring a Catholic or just wondered why the Church takes a certain position? Great book for everyone. Even helps you brush up on your own beliefs! Read more
Published on 2 Jan 2012 by Artmarkit
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb!
This is a fantastic book. It is written clearly and concisely looking at all the relevant issues. Also with great quotes. Read more
Published on 3 Dec 2011 by Francis T
5.0 out of 5 stars Concise, good read
Book provides a great section on the mechanisms of debate and discussion and the art of presenting views in a way that is heard by the listener, before exploring a well-selected... Read more
Published on 31 Oct 2011 by amt
5.0 out of 5 stars Not a "silver bullet" - but....
Maybe not the "silver bullet" to help you win every bar room debate, but this little book is a gem if you want to avoid feeling threatened, or worse still, getting cross when... Read more
Published on 21 Oct 2011 by John O'Brien
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good indeed
I would like to express my unbounded enthusiasm: this replaces Kreeft & Tacelli as the ready reference volume for the Catholic position in the modern world. Read more
Published on 17 Oct 2011 by MediaMan
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