Club Modernity for Reluctant Christians


Leonard Swidler rigorously pursues the questions raised within the context of freedom, critical-thinking, historical sensibility, and pluralism in/dialogue with the world—ultimately leading to an inner encounter with the Transcendent/Immanent.

People who live in the mental world of Modernity cherish Freedom at the core of being human and Critical-Thinking as the arbiter of what to affirm—or not. History-Evolution is seen as the heart of human life, society, and all reality, and burgeoning numbers become aware of cultural/religious Pluralism – leading to: Dialogue, indeed, Deep-Dialogue/Critical-Thinking with those who perceive the world differently from us. In that Deep-Dialogue/Critical-Thinking all seek the Ultimate Meaning of life, and how to live it – together!

Club Modernity for Reluctant Christians are reflections on the Ultimate Meaning of life that begin not From Above, but From Below, with our human experiences. This book will resonate with Christians, or “reluctant Christians,” who are having difficulty reconciling these core characteristics of Modernity with their religious faith.

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Can a person a) cherish his or her freedom, b) critically question every ideology,
c) be convinced of the evolutionary character of finite reality,
d) be open to revelation in all the world’s major religions, and
e) be a committed Catholic Christian at the same time? Yes. And Leonard Swidler shows us how. The formula is simple in design but massive in its erudition.
He summons learning gained from his prolific career, combines it with common sense, and filters it through all five of these convictions to propose a faithful portrait of Jesus of Nazareth. But following Jesus entails a program for churches to be catalysts for our common pluralistic life in our new global society. Seekers looking at Christianity for meaningful human existence today cannot pass up this fresh, personal, critical, insightful, imaginative, and empowering reappropriation of the Christian story by one of its leading interpreters.
— Roger Haight, S. J., Scholar in Residence, Union Theological Seminary
What Christians, and particularly Catholic Christians, need above all today,
in this doubting age, is a believable version of their faith which is also continuous with the tradition to which they are committed. This gift is what Leonard Swidler has now produced in this remarkable book. A great many people will receive it with relief and will stand more firmly in their faith as a result.
— John Hick, Fellow of the Institue for Advanced Research in Arts and Social Sciences, University of Birmingham, U.K.