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Vatican II: The Battle for Meaning Paperback – 1 Mar 2012


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Product details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Paulist Press (1 Mar. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0809147505
  • ISBN-13: 978-0809147502
  • Product Dimensions: 1.9 x 14 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 434,943 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Massimo Faggioli, who holds a PhD from the University of Turin, is assistant professor of theology at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul (Minnesota). He is author of numerous articles on Vatican II and contemporary Catholicism.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Yvonne Pearce on 26 Nov. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
The writer in clear and very readable English portrayed the tensions within the Roman Church created by those who would backtrack on the reforms of Vatican or even claim that it was not really a Council of the universal church. Throughout the book the writer shews his sympathy with the reforms but ends with uncertainity about the outcome of the present political battle within the church.
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By DK on 22 Feb. 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a brilliant book. Beautifully written in a clear lucid style it surveys the controversy that still surrounds this epochal event with a forensic discernment which is both informed and incisive in its analysis. For a short work it manages an almost magisterial overview of the event of Vatican II and it's subsequent interpretations which is balanced and detached, steering a clear course through some very turbulent waters. Though one may suspect where the writer's sympathies lie - at least he acknowledges there are ongoing 'issues' - he maintains a commendable impartiality in his presentation and assessments. I know of no other work which condenses so much scholarship with such clarity on this topic. All in all a usefult work which does justice to a seminal event of modern times and is a credit to the mentality it pioneered.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By donaloceallaigh on 18 April 2013
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Very good text book. I have enjoyed studying this book. I would recommend it for VII and Year of Faith.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 26 reviews
35 of 40 people found the following review helpful
An Excellent Historical Perspective of Vatican II 16 Jun. 2012
By Dennis J. Koupal Jr. - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Vatican II- The Battle for Meaning is a well written and well informed, well documented chronological treatise of the primary points of view on the meaning of Vatican II. Maintaining a scholarly distance, and not taking sides, Professor Faggioli outlines, and provides pertinent details of the two dominant perspectives on Vatican II- ressourcement, or the desire to understand and return to the pre- Trent sources of Church identity, and aggiornamento, or renewal, bringing up to date, with a spirit of open-mindedness. The author describes both points of view, including ample quotations from theologians, cardinals, and scholars in a way that leads the reader to a well informed understanding of the "change in perspective" begun prior to, yet enunciated by the Vatican II Council.

Whether retrospective or prospective in our approach to the understanding of the nature of His calling, both individually and corporately, it is prudent to know the historical background of the events and thoughts prior to, during and after perhaps the most "unprecedented event" since the first church council (Acts 15).

I highly recommend Vatican II- The Battle for Meaning for those who seek a deeper knowledge of the issues that are "in play" shaping the self awareness of the Roman Catholic tradition of the one Christian faith.
32 of 39 people found the following review helpful
Vatican II The Battle For Meaning 20 May 2012
By mary christopher - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Growing up in the 1960's, attending Catholic schools, including a Catholic university, I thought that I understood the Vatican II Council assembled under Pope John XXIII. Professor Faggioli's recently published book has altered and expanded my understanding. The content of "Vatican II The Battle For Meaning" provides a view of the council and its on-going effects related to change as well as stability within the Catholic church and the surrounding society. The book is a good read for a lay person while remaining deep and comprehensive in its scope.
I highly recommend this book to those who are interested in expanding their understanding of Catholicism, modern church history, theology, and the significant contributors to our modern society.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
A polemic, not a history, nor even a good overview 28 Oct. 2014
By William Meyer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is not in any sense a history, or a report; it is a polemic. The author presents his scholarly credentials, though the list of advisers he credits is disturbing for being all Jesuits from Boston College. Makes for a narrow view.

From the beginning, he presents a very biased view, and makes use of heavily colored language. His preferred sources for citations in respect of the good are uniformly Modernists, and to some extent, dissidents.

A better title would have been "Vatican II: Battling to make it mean what we want"

See Professor Roberto Mattei's excellent history if you want a balanced view.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
An outline of the challenges facing Pope Francis I 28 Mar. 2013
By John - Published on Amazon.com
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Are you interested in why the Roman Catholic Church has not fully met the promise of Vatican II? You might get some answers in this well written history. The author takes you on a tour from the council up to today. After reading this book, I have a much better understanding of how and why the reforms have not been fully implemented. Reuniting this fractured church will be one of the major challenges to Pope Francis I.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Well researched, but not brilliant. 5 May 2014
By Benjamin E. Murphy - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is not a bad book: Faggioli has done his research. But it has been described as essential reading for anyone interested in Vatican II, and as suitable for the general reader. In my opinion, that's too much praise.

There is a chapter on the debate between Augustinians and Neo-Thomists about the meaning of the council. Faggioli never explains the connection between Augustine, Aquinas, and the two attitudes to the council that are associated with each. Of course, if you are already familiar with 20th century Catholic theology, no explanation would be necessary, but a general reader would need some help at that point.

For people who do know about Catholic theology, it is useful to have so much information about the reception of Vatican II gathered together. However, maybe I just read too quickly, but I didn't feel I was gaining any profound insights. I don't find myself considering things afresh in the light of a new perspective. Excessive praise raised my expectations about this book, and I was left unsatisfied.
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