What Makes Us Catholic: Eight Gifts for Life

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9780060633998: What Makes Us Catholic: Eight Gifts for Life

What makes a Catholic a Catholic? According to Thomas Groome, an expert on the essential ingredients of Catholic Christianity, Catholics share certain vital features of life and identity. What Makes Us Catholic explains and illuminates that character, and invites Catholics of all kinds to connect more deeply and imaginatively with their own culture and spirituality.

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Lawrence Welk, Babe Ruth, and Madonna have at least one thing in common. They're Catholic. But what does it mean to be Catholic? Thomas Groome, in What Makes Us Catholic, offers some answers. An expert on Catholic religious education, Groome says that all Catholics, regardless of their religious involvement in the Church, share a common sense of spirituality. Inviting readers "to critically consider and deliberately choose what could be life-giving from their faith tradition," Groome describes eight spiritual qualities that he believes are distinctively Catholic. These include sacramentality ("finding the infinite in the finite"), a sense of community, a commitment to work for justice, a reverence for tradition, and a disposition toward faith and not despair.

Short essays--blending personal reflection, stories from Scripture and Church history, and exercises for prayer and reflection--define each ingredient of Catholic spiritual identity. The book's tone is accessible and nonjudgmental, and will likely help many readers eager to find a way of believing that "religion and spirituality are two sides of the same coin, and they badly need each other." --Michael Joseph Gross

About the Author:

Thomas H. Groome is chair of the Department of Religious Education and Pastoral Ministry and professor of theology and religious education at Boston College’s School of Theology and Ministry and author of What Makes Us Catholic?

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