Inside the Vatican : The Politics and Organization of the Catholic Church
Thomas S.J. ReeseISBN: 0674932617;
In his exhaustive treatment of the world's most complex religious organization, Reese, a Jesuit priest who has written about the U.S. Catholic hierarchy (Archbishop: Inside the Power Structure of the American Catholic Church, Harper San Francisco) approaches his subject from a sympathetic yet critical perspective and manages to accomplish two tasks. He describes what is, based on more than 100 interviews with Vatican insiders, and he prescribes what might be, based on his own sense of the church's place in the contemporary world. Though he avoids discussing personal lives of curial officials, he humanizes a vast bureaucracy with an occasional bit of gossip and a few revealing Vatican jokes. For example, one official offered a careerist's recipe for survival in the Roman curia: "Don't think. If you think, don't speak. If you speak, don't write. If you think and if you speak, don't write. If you think and speak and write, don't sign your name. If you think and speak and write and sign...
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