I read “Off the Cuff and Under the Collar” by Bishop John McCarthy of Austin, Texas, in order to see what looking at Catholicism with common sense would mean. I was interested to see how Bishop McCarthy would explain some beliefs and some practices that have been controversial in the past. I was pleasantly surprised at the bishop’s candid answers to certain aggravating questions that I have had regarding the Catholic Church. Not once did he go against the teachings of the church, but did explain why we believe what we do. He also indicated that he would be pleased if some of the issues in the church could be addressed and not glossed over by the church hierarchy. I was especially interested in his take on birth control, celibacy of priests, our relationship with our Jewish brethren, and the role of women in the church. There was not too much new there, but I was heartened by the bishop’s desire that our church look more closely at these issues. Some of the practices of the church did not begin with its institution, but came about much later in church history and therefore, to my mind at least, deserve another look to see if those practices and rules are relevant in today’s society. I think this is a good book for anyone interested in learning more about their own faith or those interested in the Catholic Church.
I was sent a free kindle copy of this book in return for my honest review.