Has anyone else been following this battle royale between Anglican bishop N.T. Wright and Father Richard John Neuhaus of First Things magazine?
Fr. Neuhaus spoke some hard words against N.T. Wright's new book Surprised by Hope. Theologically, I side with Fr. Neuhaus. I do think that Wright sometimes caricatures the Catholic position and he is, by his own admission, Protestant, i.e. one who protests against the Catholic Church. So we shouldn't be surprised if he doesn't line up squarely with the Catholic magisterium.
Nonetheless, Bishop Wright is a good guy and he has composed perhaps the best defense of Christ's bodily resurrection ever written: The Resurrection of the Son of God. It's solid. We used to sell it at the Catholic Information Center. Even Neuhaus recognizes it as colossal. It should be on your shelf, if it isn't already.
A couple of years ago, I read a short "sequel" to the Resurrection of the Son of God by NT Wright. It was at the library at Nashotah House. I can't find it online. I think it was named For All the Saints, or something like that. Has anyone seen it?
It sounds like this new book is a rehashing of this previous work. I was on cloud nine after reading his Resurrection of the Son of God, but even as an Anglican I was not impressed by the follow up volume. He basically bashed the historic idea that the faithful departed suffered or in any way needed our prayers. He also took jabs at black vestments and requiem Masses. It was all very strange. I need to get this new book and see if it's more of the same.
However, I don't want to end on a sour note. N.T. Wright is great, as I have said before, Wright helped lead me into the Catholic Church because he wrenched from my grip the the doctrine of imputed righteousness through justification by faith alone.
Does N.T. Wright lead to the Catholic Church? I believe that he does. Perhaps Father Neuhaus is frustrated that Wright himself won't cross the line and enter into full communion with Rome. Oremus pro eo.
Read: Does N.T. Wright lead to the Catholic Church?