RNS Press Release Service

Can the Pope affect the everyday lives of Catholics?

New book straightforwardly lays out who the Pope is,
what he does and why he matters

SAN FRANCISCO — The papacy, while seemingly uncomplicated at times, is not fully understood by most people, even Catholics. Why the Pope matters, what the Pope writes and proclaims, and why he is a central figure in the world is all explained in the new book The Papacy: What the Pope Does and Why It Matters by Stephen K. Ray and R. Dennis Walters.

THE PAPACY traces the formation of the papacy from St. Peter and why that link is extraordinarily and how it still exists today. The book tackles common misconceptions about the papacy, including infallibility, the existence of anti-Popes and what criticism is warranted.

The book is written by Stephen Ray, a former teacher of Biblical studies at a Baptist church and current Catholic convert who wrote Upon This Rock, which addresses the papacy in scripture and the early Church, and hosts the popular, award-winning film series on salvation history, The Footprints of God, including the first film in the series, Peter: Keeper of the Keys. The co-author is R. Dennis Walters, a Claretian seminary for eight years who was ordained to the permanent Diaconate in 2007 and now serves at a small parish in rural Michigan.

The Catholic Church has existed for over two thousand years. The unbroken line of succession from Peter in the form of the papacy has run throughout its entire history. THE PAPACY explains that without the Pope’s divinely guided leadership, the Church would suffer the contradictions and the divisions that many Christian groups know firsthand. The teaching passed down from the apostles would be subject to arbitrary, relative and numerous interpretations; holiness would be only a distant ideal; and the one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church founded by Jesus would break apart.

“This is a clearly written, easy-to-read explanation and defense of the papacy,” said Trent Horn, author, The Case for Catholicism. “I would recommend any Catholic, or even anyone interested in this much misunderstood part of the Catholic faith, to pick up a copy.”

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For more information, to request a review copy or to schedule an interview with Stephen Ray, please contact Kevin Wandra (404-788-1276 or [email protected]) of Carmel Communications.

This story is available for republication.

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