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Bishops' committee repeats caution on Elizabeth Johnson book

October 28, 2011

The US bishops’ conference has repeated its criticism of a book by Sister Elizabeth Johnson, saying that it is “seriously inadequate as a presentation of the Catholic understanding of God."

The doctrinal committee of the US bishops’ conference issued a new statement about Quest for the Living God after the author had submitted a lengthy response to their original criticism. In a 21-page critique issued in March, the bishops’ committee had found that the Johnson book “contains misrepresentations, ambiguities, and errors that bear upon the faith of the Catholic Church as found in Sacred Scripture, and as it is authentically taught by the Church’s universal magisterium.”

While Sister Johnson insisted that “nothing in this book dissents from the Church’s faith,” the bishops’ committee said that the work could mislead readers because “it does not sufficiently ground itself in the Catholic theological tradition as its starting point."


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  • Posted by: Defender - Oct. 30, 2011 4:05 PM ET USA

    Interesting that Sr. Johnson refuses to meet with the cardinal and the committee. It seems an ideal way for her to explain herself more fully. This whole matter could have been precluded if priests and religious return to the requirement of obtaining a nihil obstat and imprimatur from their bishop, but that would interfer with the more important "academic freedom."