The New Testament describes the baptized as a holy priesthood and a priestly people. Vatican II clearly taught that the baptized become a holy priesthood. Their personal fidelity and lives led in loving obedience to the Gospel become spiritual sacrifices offered along with the body of the Lord in the Eucharist. The Priesthood of the Faithful explores this key doctrine of Christian faith and examines its significance for the spiritual growth and revitalization of the church. It focuses on the prophetic, pastoral, and priestly roles of the faithful with the aim of helping people experience their own lives as the fruitful blossoming of Christ’s grace in the world.
Chapters are A Timely Discussion, Chosen To Live, Living, Holy Signs, A Priesthood Embracing Christ’s Body, People Who Speak for the Spirit, Hearts Set on the Kingdom of God, Lives Lifted in Praise, An Intentional Symbolic Life. Includes two appendices: Graced Sign and Realized Mystery, and An Open Letter to Religious.
Paul Philibert, OP, STD, is professor of pastoral theology at the University of Fribourg in Switzerland and is distinguished visiting professor of church and society at Aquinas Institute of Theology in St. Louis, Missouri. He is the author of Stewards of God’s Mysteries: Priestly Spirituality in a Changing Church, published by Liturgical Press.
Priesthood of the Faithful should be required reading for lay ministry formation and for those who are in RCIA or baptismal preparation leadership. Leaders in liturgical ministry and adult faith formation groups will also benefit richly from Philibert's work
Richard E. McCarron, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Liturgy, Catholic Theological Union, Chicago
. . . a prophetic voice of unqualified hope, one that deserves to be heard by all of us. . . . this is a wonderful book.
This book is a clear, straightforward, and systematic explanation of what could prove to be a complex theological analysis. It is sometimes humoristic, always interesting. Readers can enjoy this exceptional professor's development of a much-needed foundation for the theology of the lay apostolate, the `priesthood of the faithful.'
By reading this book you should understand the priesthood of the baptized and discover its significance for the lives of believers today.
Catholic Library World
There is much here for every Christian reader (and not enough space to cover it all!) - for those who feel somewhat battered during this time of horrific revelations and for the masses of Catholic laity, so often presumed incapable of understanding what the ordained among us have been thinking, reading and writing. Philibert provides both a bridge across what divides us one from the other and a companion for the journey . . . A marvelous light, indeed!
In the Vineyard, Voice of the Faithful
Paul Philibert achieves a rich and rare synthesis in The Priesthood of the Faithful. He gives us a work of substantive theological scholarship, useful pastoral guidance, and nourishing spiritual reading. Christian life is sharing in the priesthood of Christ himself. Fr. Philibert unfolds this foundational truth with beauty, conviction, and great love for the ordained and lay faithful alike.
H. Richard McCord, Ed.D., Executive Director, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, Committee on the Laity
. . . a beautiful theological meditation on the priesthood of the faithful. . . . what this book describes is not some `priesthood of the laity' that stands alongside that of the ordained. It presents a priesthood of the whole body of Christ-a call to discipleship in the midst of the everyday, which is a challenge for both the ordained and non-ordained alike.
Vatican II promulgated the first official theology of the laity. Paul Philibert breaks open the words and symbols of that teaching, probing their theological meaning and spiritual significance. Drawing on wisdom ancient (Scripture, the fathers) and modern (eg. Flannery O'Connor, Yves Congar) he illumines the experience of the laity, showing how it is priestly, and oriented toward a mission. He invites a deep pondering of the events of everyday life ("priesthood in the ordinary") through classic texts, symbols and rituals of the church, in a volume that is affirming, inspiring, challenging, for lay people, certainly, but for vowed religious and the priests who serve them as well.
Zeni V. Fox
The book is brief, concise, and written in a way that is accessible to someone without a theology background.
The CARA Report
This book provides much food for thought and discussion for individuals and groups involved in parish leadership, book clubs, and faith-sharing groups interested in the development of lives that speak the Good News.
. . . a gem. It is a work of vision and direction. It synthesizes and expresses ideas that have been brewing over a lifetime. It is rife with practical advice about how to renew Christian life within the Church and within the world. College teachers will find it useful for courses addressing topics such as Church, Laity, Ministry, Sacraments, Mission, and Spirituality. It will also prove useful for various forms of adult education and community formation.
Presents a clear theology, a provocative vision, and a vibrant spirituality in a well-written book.
Catholic Books Review
Philibert's theology aims at the more fundamental level shared by all. This enables the text to be used in the widest range of ecclesial settings.
New Theology Review