CTSA says bishops don't understand Johnson's book

April 25, 2011

The board of directors of the Catholic Theological Society of America has raised concerns about the U.S. bishops' Committee on Doctrine's critical assessment of a theology professor's popular book.

The 10-member board April 8 questioned the process used by the bishops to assess the 2007 book written by Sister Elizabeth Johnson, suggested the bishops misread the book's premise and said the bishops' criticism "seems to reflect a very narrow understanding of the theological task."

The doctrinal committee, chaired by Cardinal Donald Wuerl, said the book, Quest for the Living God, contained "misrepresentations, ambiguities and errors" related to the Catholic faith.

The committee cited seven areas of concern, saying Johnson chose to use standards outside the Catholic faith to "criticize and to revise in a radical fashion the conception of God revealed in Scripture and taught by the magisterium."