Avery Cardinal Dulles, S.J. Magisterium: Teacher and Guardian of the Faith. Introductions to Catholic Doctrine. Naples, FL.: Sapientia Press, 2007.  Pp. x + 209. $21.95

by Glenn B. Siniscalchi, Duquesne University

Avery Dulles’s Magisterium is perhaps the most clear, concise, and comprehensive introductory book to date on the teaching authority and function of the Catholic Church.  Written primarily for Catholics, it covers various aspects of the Magisterium with the theologies of Pope John Paul II, Benedict XVI, and the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in mind.  So important are these sources for a new theology of the Magisterium that older works that do not include them “would be in serious need of updating” (viii).  Nine appendices provide the most pertinent sections of the most recent papal documents on the Church’s teaching authority.

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