Science in Christian Perspective
Book Reviews for September 1980
THE IDEA OF JUSTICE IN CHRISTIAN
PERSPECTIVE by Jan Dengerick, Wedge Publishing Foundation, Toronto.
59 pp., $2.95.
In this brief hook, Jan Dengerink, professor of Reformed philosophy at the universities of Utrecht arid Groningen, presents his view of justice. His entire presentation is theoretical (there are no examples from life situations), yet none the less valuable.
lie begins with a brief but incisive summary of the views of justice held by various philosophers in western history: Pre-Socratics, Plato, Aristotle, Augustine, Locke, Rousseau, Barth, Brunncr, Ellul and more. He elucidates their ideas in view of their broader concepts on metaphysics and theology'. Assuming the reader has some acquaintance with philosophy, this section is invaluable.
In the light of this historical overview, Dengerink presents his own view. Though brief and often merely suggestive, it is sharply focused. All justice, he claims, is founded in the sovereignty of God and preserved by the love of God in Christ's redemption. Cod has called man not only to a stewardship of justice, but to he a eolaborer in forming the concrete expression of justice in positive law.
Man is called therefore to give concrete form to the so-called structure-norms or structure-principles, which hold, by virtue of the order of creation, for the various societal relationships the family arid marriage, the state, the school association, a music grrnr1r, a business, etc. Nowhere is he simply left to his own devises. In this concrete forming of such structural norm man is invested with authority, which at bottom he does not derive, as Western humanism teaches, from himself or from those who have called him to his place of authority (the people, or whatever) but from God. Authority indeed has its deepest ground in the divine world order. (p.54)
Dengerink concludes with an appeal to Christians to "make an essential, even in indispensable contribution" to law, especially to international law, since humanistically-based law tends invariably to totalitarianism.
Despite sentence structure and punctuation which is in places confusing, the book is valuable as an outline of the concept of justice in our western heritage and as a stimulus to further reflection on an important issue.
Reviewed by James Walter Gustafson, Professor of Philosophy, Northern Essex Community College, Haverhill, MA
THE TAX DILEMMA: PRAYING FOR PEACE ... PAYING FOR WAR by Donald D, Kaufman. Herald Press, Scottsdale, Pennsylvania. 104 pages. Paperback. $3.95.
This is an excellent hook to challenge the thinking of anyone who claims to be a follower of Christ. Just what does it require to put His Kingdom first?
One can now legally adopt a pacifist position and refuse to physically serve in the military. However, few people will submit to the hassle of withholding their portion of the tax dollar which goes to support war.
The author makes a clear point that Jesus' teaching demands radical commitment and cannot he intimidated h) government. The exposition raises some difficult questions for the so-called pacifist who pays all of his income tax.
The hook will even be uncomfortable reading for those people who already feel they can rationally support national defense. After a thoughtful reading of the material, one cannot help but question the legitimacy' of claiming to be a genuine follower of Christ and also a supporter of the military complex. Where do you put your security - . . in military strength . . . or Jesus Christ and His teachings?
All in all, a very practical book that points out one aspect of the everyday struggle and cost of true discipleship. I recommend it as a most to all who are serious about the meaning of the Lordship of Jesus Christ in all aspects of their life.
Reviewed by Richard A. Jacobson, Professor of Mathematics, Houghton College, Houghton, New York.
BETWEEN THE EAGLE AND THE DOVE by Ronald Kirkemo. InterVarsity Press, Downers Grove, Illinois, 191-6,181 pp. Paperback. $4.95.
Ron Kirkemo, an Associate Professor of International Relations at San Diego's Point Loma College, addresses the Christian and American foreign policy. His discussion of foreign policy is typical of the scholarship and Aristotelian approach of most universities today. He lists the four possible distributions of world power, the three categories of foreign policies (and their subcategories), the five factors determining an individual nation's foreign policy, etc. He states the obvious (e.g. "Each political office has a specified term after which the incumbents must stand for re-election."), and garbles technical details such as the Department of Defense Planning, Programming and Budgeting System. All this is fine for the purposes of testing the students in International Relationships 101, but where is the continuity? What predictive power is there?
When the author comes to the role of the Christian in foreign policy, the results are even more disappointing. After urging Christians to participate in government, he then asserts that the Bible offers no guidelines for foreign policy and that there is no such thing as a Christian Foreign Policy. This leaves the door open for anyone to say anything. Kirkemo pushes his program, a collection of moral platitudes to which most pagans would assent. The explicit statements on the "sovereignty" of nations and the implicit treatment of the Bible as not relevant demean the Lordship of God.
One of the many biblical examples of God's Lordship over nations is contained in the Areopagus address where Paul points out God's space/time control of all nations (Acts 17:26). One of the most interesting of the many biblical foreign policy guidelines is the treaty between the Gibeonites and the Israelites (Joshua 9) and God's response to the breaking of that treaty (2 Sam. 21).
Reviewed by F. T, McMullen, Major, USAF, Aeronautical Systems Division (AELF.) WeightPatterson AFB, Ohio 45433.
EVANGELICALS AT AN IMPASSE by Robert K. Johnston, John Knox Press,
178 pp. Paperback. $6.95.
Johnston is Associate Professor of Religion at Western Kentucky University; my own personal experience upon reading this excellent book was heightened by the fact that I knew Bob as an InterVarsity undergraduate at Stanford! Subtitled, "Biblical Authority in Practice," the book focusses on the issue, "How do evangelicals translate their understanding of Biblical authority from theory into practice?" To illustrate the problems that evangelicals currently face, Johnston considers the specific issues of biblical inspiration and inerrancy, the role of women in the church and family, social ethics, and homosexuality.
Johnston sees the present impasse faced by evangelicals as caused by their failure to appreciate the different inputs of biblical exegesis, historical interpretation and contemporary evaluation. Undue emphasis on any one of these three approaches, without an integrative synthesis, leads to an unbalanced position, whether that of traditionalism, biblicism, or false contemporary relevance. By referring to the leading Christian authors in each of the problem areas he treats, Johnston seeks to guide the evangelical in an understanding of the issues, contemporary proposed solutions, and the first steps toward an integration.
In the discussion of biblical inspiration and inerrancy, for example, Johnston defines four major positions with their principal adherents: (1) detailed inerrancy- Harold Lindsell and Francis Schaeffer, (2) partial infallibility Dewey Beegle and Stephen Davis, (3) irenic inerrancy Clark Pinnock and Daniel Fuller, and (4) complete infallibility-David Hubbard. Johnston's useful guidance is evident in such summaries as, "With Lindsell, Scripture is culturally independent; with Fuller, it is culturally conditioned; with Jewett culturally limited....I would suggest that evangelicals might better look at the notion of accommodation in terms of Scripture's culture-directedness."
In the chapter on women's roes, Johnston compares the approaches of evangelicals Nancy Hardesty, Virginia Mollenkott, and Paul Jewett, with evangelicals George Knight, Elisabeth Elliot, and Larry Christenson. In the chapter on social ethics, he explores four of evangelicalism's leading periodicals: Moody Monthly, Christianity Today, The Reformed Journal, and Sojourners. In the chapter on homosexuality, Johnston discusses inputs to a rejecting-punitive approach, a rejecting-nonpunitive approach, qualified acceptance, and full acceptance, citing evangelical authors in each category.
This book will help evangelicals to be more responsive to the needs and opportunities of the day while at the same time developing a biblical foundation for this response. It would serve as an excellent text for a discussion or study group; I have used it this way!
Reviewed by Richard H. Rube, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Stanford University, Stanford, California 94311,5.
GENERAL RELATIVITY FROM A TO B by Robert Geroch, The University of Chicago Press, Chicago, Illinois 60637, 225 pp. (hardbound), $11.95, 1978.
Popularization of the theory of relativity has been an important activity for physicists and mathematicians ever since Einstein's general theory achieved fame sixty years ago, and its practitioners have included such names as Eddington, Born and Russell. Increased interest in relativity during the past two decades, spurred largely by new astronomical discoveries, has meant also an increased demand for books on relativity which are comprehensible to interested laymen.
A temptation for the popularizer is concentration on spectacular phenomena, with neglect of the fundamental ideas of the theory in question. Geroch avoids this pitfall, concentrating on the basic notions of space-time geometry which are fundamental to Einstein's theory. While there is no mathematics beyond elementary algebra and geometry, the book perhaps has its major success in giving the flavor of the abstract character of modern theoretical physics.
Geroch proceeds from the common-sense Aristotelian world view, with its absolute space and absolute time,
through the Galilean view, in which time remains absolute, to Einstein's theory in which neither space by itself nor time by itself possesses any absolute character. These views are pictured within the framework of the fourdimensional space-time concept, with no attempt being made to follow the historical development in detail. New concepts are motivated by a few fundamental facts of physics, such as those associated with moving observers, light propagation and particle decay.
Once reached, Einstein's picture of the relation between space-time events is elucidated in terms of the concept of space-time interval, which is developed from simple thought experiments. Some time is then spent on the development of consequences of this view of the world, such as the well-known length contraction and time dilation.
Einstein's full theory of gravitation also gives the equations which pick out the types of space-time consistent with a given distribution of matter. Geroch's desire to avoid mathematics of great complexity here compels him to use analogies about curved surfaces in order to deal with the concept of space-time curvature. Thus there is some drop in the level of rigor here, but one is almost always forced to some such expedient in an attempt to popularize the Einstein equations. In any case, Geroch has done a reasonable job of spelling out the various concepts and relationships which go to make up the complete general theory of relativity. A final chapter on black holes concentrates on the basic geometric facts about these entities, with brief comment on the astronomical evidence for their existence.
As stated earlier, Geroch succeeds in giving the flavor of abstract theory without becoming mired in the details. In addition, the hook presents a reasonably modest attitude about the scope and nature of science, something which is welcome in dealing with a subject which sometimes tempts one to make overly grandiose cosmological claims. General Relativity From A To B expresses its limitations in its title. There is no attempt to discuss everything connected with relativity, but only to make clear the fundamental ideas of the theory in a non-technical fashion. The boon can be commended to anyone who wants to achieve that kind of understanding of Einstein's theory.
Reviewed by George L. Murphy, Wartbarg Seminary, Dubuque, Iowa .52001.
THE FEMININE DIMENSION OF THE DIVINE by Joan Chamberlain Engelsman, Philadelphia: The Westminster Press, 1979,
203 pp., $8.95.
What is the role of a goddess? The theme of this book is that man (and woman) needs to believe in a goddess figure in order to be psychologically healthy. The absence of goddess-figures in modern Western society is not the "healthy" state of man, hot an unhealthy one caused by religion-based repression of feminine aspects of the divine.
Dr. Engelsman begins her discussion using Jung's archetypal theory. Such Jungian archetypes as the mater,
or the source of life, and the anima, who presides over bodily and material transformations, are feminine images of what Engelsmnan calls the "Great Mother". These images have been symbolized by water, fountains, light, animals, the moon and weather. Feminine images will always seek expression of some kind, says Engelsman, "because they are part of the structure of the collective unconscious" (p. 31).
Generally these feminine archetypes have not been deified in modern Western society. Instead, the divine Father-Son relationship is stressed, excluding recognition of important feminine archetypes. This is a result of psychological repression, "a major deterrent to the free expression of the archetypal feminine" (p.32). Engelsman believes that whole cultures can become involved in repression, so that the return of collectively repressed material will affect the life of an entire society.
Results of this repression are twofold. First, the distinction between "feminine" and "evil" has become blurred in some instances. Women are "regarded as seductive; they lead men into a life of sin and alienation from God Father." (p. 39) Second, this missing feminine dimension of God leads to psychological impoverishment; "the divisive nature of patriarchal religion" (p. 40) is stressed, instead of the wholeness encouraged by complementary divine feminine symbols.
Deification of feminine archetypes last occurred in Western civilization during the Hellenistic period; Dr. Engelsman examines the cults of Isis and Demeter as examples of the most recent Western worship of feminine archetypes. She then turns to ancient Judaism, and claims goddess status for Sophia, the personification of Wisdom in the Old Testament: "I, Wisdom, dwell together with prudence; I possess knowledge and discretion." (Proverbs 8:12, NIV) Because of the strict monotheism of Judaism, she argues, Sophia was repressed and not allowed official recognition as a deity. However, the development of Sophia demonstrated the subconscious need of the Hebrews for a goddess-figure.
Sophia was further repressed by Jewish and early Christian theologians, who replaced her with the "Logos" concept, masculinizing Divine Wisdom. Engelsman specifically discusses Philo, who initiated this substitution: "Philo's general attitude toward women ... results in open hostility toward the feminine." (p. 105) Engelsman then applies Philo's motivations to early Christian theologians as well, in explaining their continued emphasis on a male Christ, the Logos of God.
In conclusion, Dr. Engelsman sees resolution of the repressed feminine in certain modern trends: the recent feminist movement, she feels, has revealed the absence of feminine images in Western religion; material repressed for centuries in Judeo-Christian thought is now rising into consciousness; male-dominated religious symbolism is now recognized as "bias," not "fact;" and masculine virtues are no longer perceived as the highest virtues attainable. Engelsman feels that Christian theology will begin to change as a result, toward a more holistic perception of God, including masculine and feminine dimensions.
This hook does not deal with revelational theology. Issues such as the inspiration of Scriptures, God's incarnation in Christ and the reality of knowing God personally are disregarded in this treatment of man's perception of God. Dr. Engelsnmium is examining what man has thought about the divine, not what God has thought about man. Read with this in mind, the book is a thought provoking exposé of traditional Western attitudes toward women
Renewed by Barbara Trade!!, Department of Chemistry, Houghton College, Houghton NY.
NOBODY SPEAKS FOR ME! SELF-PORTRAITS OF AMERICAN WORKING CLASS WOMEN by Nancy Seifer. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1976. 477 pages. Paperback.. $4.95.
This is an important book but, like the population it documents, it has not received the attention it deserves. Nobody Speaks For Me presents the oral life histories of ten working class women and allows them to speak for themselves.
Author Nancy Seifer describes herself as a "middle class Jewish liberal" and confesses that she fears her class credentials might cause her to he seen as an "illegitimate" spokesperson for "working people." However, anyone who has read her previous book, Absent From The Majority, knows that she cannot he numbered among the many who seem virtually unable to understand the dignity of working class culture. Seifer is primarily concerned with fostering mutual respect and liberation for the oppressed.
The ten women in this hook are not "typical" but they are true-to-life. You could meet a couple of them in any working class neighborhood. They also are not simply products of the recent feminist movement. Activist working women have been with us since the rise of the working class. Seifer's woolen represent a wide diversity in ages (26 to 60), and ethnic and religious backgrounds (Black, Catholic, Chicana, French, Jewish, Italian, White Anglo-Saxon- Baptist). They are all unified by the fact that each one of them experienced some hard living and then organized to reach out with help to others whose lives were being similarly violated. "Each has emerged as a fighter, in many cases a recognized leader, committed in some way to improving the quality of life." (p. 37)
In each chapter the reader has the experience of sitting down over a cop of coffee with a stranger and emerging at the end of the interview with a new friend for whom you have a great deal of respect. We are introduced to Anita Cupps, an evangelical Christian and miner's wife, who is committed to social equality through her involvement in Alabama coal mining politics; Mary Sansone, an activist who perseveres to found the Congress of Italian-American Organizations in New York City; Rosalinda Rodriguez, a city councilwoman who is active raising Chicano political awareness in Cotulla, Texas; Jancie Bernstein, fighting blockbusting on Boston's Blue Hill Avenue; Bonnie Halascsak who blends feminism and unionism in Gary, Indiana, as she grows into and out of her job as U.S. Steel's first woman security guard; Dorthy Bolden, who organizes a national labor union for domestic workers after working as a maid for 42 years in Atlanta.
The book as a whole is reminiscent of anthropologist Oscar Lewis's best work, and it has the same problems. What was originally a series of dialogues has been edited into a vivid monologue. The value of the book as a research document is limited without Seifer's interview questions and comments. The reader is also not provided with Scifer's observations; the only thing we know about the unique context of each woman's life is what the woman herself tells us. Yet there is good evidence that Scifer's editing was done with great care. For instance, even sections that seem overly detailed are important in helping the reader to understand each woman's preoccupations and concerns.
None of these women will likely become another "Mother Jones," but all are already blue-collar aristocrats. I take my hardhat off to them for the integrity of their lives and to Seifer for recording their redemptive lifestyles.
Reviewed by John R. Snarey, Center for Moral Development and Education, Harvard University. Cambridge, MA 02138.
A NEW LAND TO LIVE IN by Fraoeislee Osseo-Asare. Downers Grave, Illinois: InterVarsity Press, 1977. 159 pp. $3.95.
The title of this book has two appropriate meanings: (1) it is the author's personal struggle with the decision to marry a native Ghanaian committed to returning to his homeland after college (Berkeley of the 1960s) and (2) an affirmation of Bonhoeffer's (Letters from Prison) characterization of the wedding day as a triumph over doubt and impediment. Through journal entries arid letters we follow the searching path. "Did love and marriage even mean the same things in African and American cultures?" "How did I know that I would he able to make the adjustments required to allow us to live a full life together?"
To answer these questions for herself she decided to travel to Ghana alone arid interpret life there without the native tutelage of her fiance. Spending nine months as a teacher in a coastal fishing town, her experiences as a naive schoolmistress, Scripture Union member, and with daily problems common to living in an unfamiliar nonwestern culture, are described sensitively but with varying degrees of interest to this reader. At times she is melodramatic: "I'm ready to crucify, every day if necessary, any self-pity or regrets that the Accuser may bring as we kneel at the marriage altar." After nearly nine months in the land she poignantly described the agonies of feelings of helplessness and aloneness. "I don't know anyone in Ghana I can talk to about these things." And in reply Kwadwo wrote that he couldn't find anyone in the States who would understand these things either.
The author's intent is to let us know that there are others who do understand intercultural, interracial Christian marriages. The last section of the book highlights these conflicts with personal and family struggles over the final decision to marry.
Having read the book and written the above, I am perplexed by the publisher's last statement on the hack cover. "Francislee Osseo-Asare is a writer living in Pennsylvania (italics mine) with her husband." Surely the Ghana to Pennsylvania odyssey is as interesting as the decision to marry, but, unfortunately, is not included.
Reviewed by David Kapusinski, Department of Psychology, Bluftom College, Blufton. Ohio 45817
FOUR ARGUMENTS FOR THE ELIMINATION OF TELEVISION by Jerry Mander. William Morrow and Co., 105 Madison Ave.,
New York, N.Y. 10016, 1978. 371 pages. Paperback. $4.95.
When one stops to reflect upon the enormous waste of time and human energy spent in television watchingto say nothing of the general banality and crassness of programming or the oft-times offensive and manipulative advertisements-one wants very much to like any hook which comes out strongly against television. And there is much to like in this book entitled Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television. Unfortunately there is also much that disappoints.
The author is a former advertising agency executive from San Francisco who has become a sort of self-appointed consumer advocate in the field of advertising. Mander's thought is in many respects a child of the radical '60's and, like much of the thought born out of that tumultous era, is an admixture of the profound and the foolish. This reader feels compelled to at once both praise and condemn.
But first a brief outline of the book is in order. Mander begins with a rather lengthy (47 pages) introduction in which he describes his changing perspectives on television and advertising as his occupation changed from college student to ad-man to consumer advocate, lie then launches into his four arguments, which are quite diffuse and somewhat amorphous. Considerable work on the reader's part is required to distill and crystallize them, but as best as I can manage, they are as follows.
I. Argument One
(a) Increasingly, the environment of roan is artificial (i.e. man-made).
(b) The more artificial his environment, the more man must rely on media for knowledge of his world and the less on his own experience.
(e) Media information may be unreliable; experiential inforsnation is always reliable.
(d) Therefore, the more artificial his environment, the more susceptible man is to the implantation of arbitrary information (i.e. brainwashing).
(e) Television is far and away the best medium for effecting this brainwashing.
(f) These conditions are intolerable; therefore television must he eliminated.
II. Argument Two
(a) Power and wealth are continually being concentrated in the hands of fewer and fewer people.
(b) This tendency is a necessary result of modern technology and economic factors.
(c) Television is controlled by those in whose hands wealth and power are concentrated.
(d) Television is the primary instrument whereby the continual concentration of wealth and power is effected.
(e) Power and wealth ought not to he concentrated; therefore television ought to be eliminated.
III. Argument Three
Television technology produces undesirable and possibly dangerous neurological, physiological, and psychological responses in people who watch television; therefore television ought to be eliminated.
IV. Argument Four
(a) Television can convey some types of infornsation completely, other types partially or with great difficulty, and some information it cannot convey at all.
(b) These "biases" of television are inherent in the technology and cannot be changed.
(c) In general, these "biases" of television give rise to dangerous distortions of reality and gross misconceptions in television viewers.
(d) Having no information from television is better than misinformation; reality is better than distorted reality; therefore television ought to be eliminated.
The author concludes with a short section (10 pages) in which he deals with some basic questions. '[he author suggests that technologies are not in general morally neutral but often are inherently inclined towards good or evil purposes (e.g. How shall we reform the technology that produces hydrogen bombs?). If technologies are not morally neutral, he argues, then we should he able to ban those that are undesirable. He also questions the desirability of any technology so complex that it necessarily shifts decision-making power away from democratic control to control by the "experts."
With a title such as this book has, one expects a very organized, well-structured book. One finds the opposite. The book reads like the outline was written after the text. The arguments overlap one another a good deal more than they have to. With better organization the book could easily be reduced by thirty to forty pages without substantial loss.
Also, Jerry Mander gerrymanders his research, drawing the boundaries of his research so as to include any arid all data which support his pre-conceived notions and exclude all data which do not. Towards anti-television data he is completely without skepticism: science, pseudoscience, pop-psychology, science fiction, Eastern mysticism, Indian religious beliefs, arid personal experiences all are equally acceptable as data sources insofar as they coincide with his ideas.
In addition, there is much over-glorification of the "noble savage," and overly-harsh condemnation of modern technological society. Stone-age peoples and cultures are wise and good; technological-age peoples and cultures are stupid and bad. Nowhere is there the slightest hint that, after all, a lot of superstitious nonsense has been gotten rid of or that technology has brought many benefits to mankind as well as problems. Although never explicitly stated by Mander, the conclusion that man must return to a pre-technological society follows from his first two arguments and is a constant, thinly veiled undercurrent throughout the book.
This book encourages one simply to dismiss the whole issue. It is too easy to categorize Four Arguments as the work of a crackpot, for despite all its shortcomings, there is much presented in this book that merits serious thought.
Anyone who tried to follow the events in the recent invasion of Viet Nam by Communist China will not quickly dismiss the problem of telling truth from fiction or news from propaganda in this technological age. Anyone who has seen children transfixed in front of the television set will not easily brush off the assertion that television to some extent mesmerizes. Anyone who has ever tried to read a book or have an intelligent conversation in the same room with a turned-on television set, anyone who has caught himself watching "Cilligan's Island" reruns when he had not intended to watch at all but had merely sat down in the same room with a turned-on television set, will not doubt the power the medium has to fix attention and stupefy. Anyone who has tried to picture Moses in his mind and came up with Charlton Heston will not argue too strongly that media images are of little lasting consequence and do not greatly distort reality.
The time is past due for Christians to critically examine their television watching habits in the light of Christ's lordship over all areas of their lives. It is not enough to simply decide that one can watch programs such as "Little House on the Prairie" and cannot watch others such as "Charlie's Angels." It is not even enough to work at reforming television programming. More basic questions concerning the medium itself must be wrestled with. Books such as Four Arguments will prove thought-provoking for thoughtful Christians.
Reviewed by David A, Kloosteroman, Analytical Methods and Services, Fine Chemicals Division, The Upjohn Co., 1140-91-1, Kalamazoo, MI 49001
THE RELIGIOUS IMPULSE
by Jean-Claude Barreau, New York: Paulist Press, 1979, ix & 70 pages, $1.95
Marx, Nietzche, and Freud attempted to eliminate religion in the nineteenth century but human beings responded by creating or discovering different gods. Still others continued to believe in the God of their fathers and mothers. Jean-Claude Barreau writes that the religious impulse is frequently misdirected but cannot be denied.
God has never been the only unrestricted value affirmed by human beings. Idols, which permit believing people to make their own concerns absolute, have been the perennial problem of all true religions. Even atheists recognize and try to satisfy the religious impulse.
Barreau affirms Christianity to be the authentic expression of the religious impulse but is critical of the Church as an institution. However he does not appeal to the Bible as the source of the living Word nor does he ever explain how Christianity survives in history. His Christianity is personal and unique as compared to his perception of the religious impulse which is universal. One value of the book is also its limitation: Barreau's pilgrimage from non-belief to faith is as personal and private as his relationship to his grandfather.
The book is a spiritual autobiography of a young Frenchman who was able to escape the atheism of his grandfather without ever rejecting that man's authentic love and concern. Barreau became a Christian, then a priest, and exercised an innovative and redemptive ministry among poor youths in Paris' Pigalle. He remains a Christian but he is now married and has moved to a new ministry as a layman.
To be a Christian, according to Barreau, is to follow the religious impulse to its limit, lie passes other options across the reader's horizon quickly only to show why they could not be satisfactory responses to the religious impulse. But the tour from Communism via Islam to science and sex is no more satisfactory than the tour of Pigalle by night. Ideas fly by swiftly. Perhaps the author would say that, like seeds, his ideas will take root in fertile, well worked ground.
His conclusion is that the human can find rest only in God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. No Church can stifle that truth and Jean-Claude would say no human can ignore it without stifling or misplacing the desire for the transcendent or the religious impulse, common to all of us.
Reviewed by William J. Sullivan, S T. B., Associate Professor. Religious Studies, St. John Fisher College, Rochester. New York 14618.