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The Seven Big Myths About the Catholic Church: Distinguishing Fact from Fiction [Hardcover]

Christopher Kaczor

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Book Description

16 Oct 2012
The Roman Catholic Church has long been the target of suspicion and hostility. But how much of this is based on ignorance and prejudice and how much is the fruit of thoughtful consideration of the facts? This book separates fact from fiction. Without excusing or justifying wrongdoing, author Christopher Kaczor clarifies official Catholic teaching and demonstrates that much popular opinion about Catholicism is based on misunderstanding and misinformation. He also provides robust and lucid arguments for Catholic belief and practice. No one book can answer everyone's questions or objections about Catholicism, but this work examines seven of the most controversial and most common myths about the Catholic Church. The Seven Myths: - The Church Opposes Science: The Myth of Catholic Irrationality - The Church Opposes Freedom and Happiness: The Myth of Catholic Indifference to Earthly Welfare - The Church Hates Women: The Myth of Catholic Misogyny - Indifferent to Love, the Church Banned Contraception: The Myth of Opposition between Love and Procreation - The Church Hates Gays: The Myth of Catholic "Homophobia" - The Church Opposes Same-Sex Marriage Because of Bigotry: The Myth That There Is No Rational Basis for Limiting Marriage to One Man and One Woman - Priestly Celibacy Caused the Crisis of Sexual Abuse of Minors: The Myth of Priestly Pedophilia

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Customer Reviews

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Amazon.com: 4.6 out of 5 stars  27 reviews
64 of 66 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Helpful clarifications of the Church's most misunderstood teachings 6 Nov 2012
By Brandon Vogt - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Over the last few years, I've had many discussions with Protestants, Mormons, atheists, and agnostics. If there's one thing they all share in common, it's a profound confusion about what the Catholic Church actually teaches. Venerable Fulton Sheen was right: "There are not more than 100 people in the world who truly hate the Catholic Church, but there are millions who hate what they perceive to be the Catholic Church."

Dr. Christopher Kaczor agrees, and in his new book The Seven Big Myths about the Catholic Church: Distinguishing Fact from Fiction about Catholicism (Ignatius Press, hardcover, 164 pages) he clears up seven of the biggest misunderstandings. The chosen myths include:

- The Church opposes science
- The Church opposes freedom and happiness
- The Church hates women
- The Church is indifferent to love because she rejects contraception
- The Church hates gays
- The Church opposes same-sex marriage for irrational reasons
- The Church's abuse crisis was due to priestly celibacy

In each chapter, Kaczor untwists the objection by combining Church teaching with historical, psychological, and social data. For example, when proving that the Church supports science, he provides several excerpts from papal teachings that hold reason and research in high regard. Even more, he highlights many great scientists who were either Catholic or educated in Catholic institutions. Finally, he explains how the Catholic Church is one of the biggest proponents of science today through her astronomy labs, research funding, and universities. He deals with controversial subjects, like the Galileo case, but shows how these outliers fit into a much larger, pro-science narrative.

Besides the chapter on science, Kaczor's chapters on contraception and homosexuality are especially sharp. I agree with Dr. Peter Kreeft who says, "The chapter on contraception is the most simple, commonsensical, winsome, and persuasive I have ever seen...The chapter on same-sex marriage has the clearest and the completest logic I have ever read on the subject." If you're looking for straightforward, rational explanations for why the Church opposes both contraception and same-sex marriage, these will help.

My only critique surrounds the second chapter, which deals with the myth that says Catholicism opposes freedom and happiness. The chapter stuck out to me both for its length and its topic. The chapter is twice as long as some of the others, and it addresses an objection which, in my experience, is uncommon among non-Catholics. Like all the others, the chapter is convincing and well-written but I wonder whether another "myth" could have been substituted, perhaps "Catholicism is built on pagan mythology."

In a religiously illiterate world, evangelization is about clarification as much as proclamation. That makes Dr. Kaczor's Seven Big Myths about the Catholic Church a real winner. It's a valuable tool for the New Evangelization and will help clear away the biggest roadblocks people have to the Catholic Church.
56 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Why you shouldn't hate the Catholic Church 19 Oct 2012
By Lover_of_Truth - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
The opening quote from Fulton Sheen best summarizes this book: "There are not more than 100 people in the world who truly hate the Catholic Church, but there are millions who hate what they perceive to be the Catholic Church." Much of what the culture-at-large thinks is true regarding the Catholic Church, its doctrines, and its practices is mistaken! With great clarity and charity, Kaczor gives common sense explanations that cut through some of the most controversial myths about the Church and exposes the truth. A must-read for all those looking for the truth about the problems plaguing our culture.
27 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good stuff! 27 Oct 2012
By A. Best - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
"Clarity and charity" really sums up the quality of Kaczor's defense. The chapters on contraception and homosexual "marriage" are invaluable. The dispelling of the myths is well done, and he provides solid explanations for every one of them. He is correct on all counts.
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Clear and Concise; Full of interesting information 25 Oct 2012
By urworthwaiting4 - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Chris Kaczor's new book lives up to the hype. Full of interesting facts about Catholicism. Clear discussion of controversial issues like same sex marriage. Even if you are familiar with these issues, you'll probably get something out of this book.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great book for Catholics or those who want to know about Catholics 27 Nov 2012
By lakegirl - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Love this book. I will be using it with my Bible Study ladies to help them learn more about the Catholic faith. Can't defend the faith when one doesn't know the faith...a big help for those Catholics who want to learn more about being Catholic and why She teaches what She does.
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