The rift between Protestants and Roman Catholics continues to separate Christians from one another and to diminish our witness in the world. Words such as "heretic," "apostate," "idolater," and "papist" have characterized much of the discussion over the last several centuries since the reformation. While changes in both groups over the last few decades have improved the tone of the discussion, much remains to be accomplished. Author Bob LaRochelle, as a former Roman Catholic and now a United Church of Christ minister, is well-equipped to guide us toward a more constructive relationship.
Crossing the Street speaks to the heart of the Energion Publications mission statement by advocating a "mainstream ecumenical center" in which Roman Catholics and Protestants can come to a deeper appreciation and understanding of the gifts they bring to one another. It demonstrates ways in which these traditions have misunderstood one another and even themselves, and then proposes strategies for both ecumenical cooperation and self-understanding.
This book is founded in a thorough understanding of both traditions and a commitment to ecumenical dialog and cooperation. It addresses both theory and practice. In a series of four chapters, it examines how we live in our own houses, the author's own story, and then the gifts that each group offers the other.
Facebook Page: Crossing the Street
Robert LaRochelle's Crossing the Street is a masterful intellectual travelogue of a journey of faith. The book is, at the same time, engaging and revelatory personal account of faith in transition and a scholarly exploration of the issues which divide and unite the Protestant and Catholic churches. While I come from a different philosophical/theological perspective and have crossed the street from a cradle Episcopalian to Greek Orthodox by marriage, I find that the Reverend Doctor LaRochelle presents a thorough and compassionate review of the differences and similarities of the two traditions.
Curtis Brand, Ph.D.
Author of Butterfly Moon
If you're a Protestant, what goes on behind the doors of a Roman Catholic Church? And if you're Catholic, what are those Protestants doing on Sunday mornings? In his new book, Crossing the Street, Bob LaRochelle, raised a Catholic and now a Protestant minister, makes a strong case for doing just that, crossing the street and finding out what our brothers and sisters are doing.
Columnist, Hartford Courant
Author of Dating Jesus
In Crossing the Street Pastor Bob LaRochelle challenges us to grow in our ability to build up the Body of Christ and dialogue from the perspective of our diverse denominational experiences and traditions. As one who did "cross the street", I highly recommend this book to those who are interested in learning from one man's courageous and joyful journey.
The Rev. Albert R. Cutié
Church of the Resurrection
Biscayne Park, FL
Crossing the Street is an experienced Christian pastor's wise reflection on the current state of American Christianity or, better, American Christians. Once a Catholic teacher, then an ordained deacon, later a school counselor and United Church of Christ minister, Robert LaRochelle's is a very American religious story. His pastoral and theological reflections are about continuity as much as change, shared Christian faith and discipleship, as well as honest assessments of important differences. Here is a book about faith that helps us get behind the newest data on America's ever changing religious landscape. Pastors, teachers and active lay Christians should read this important and very helpful book.
University Professor of Faith and Culture
University of Dayton
Loyola Professor of Catholic Studies, Emeritus
College of the Holy Cross
As an intensely personal account of the internal struggles experienced by one who wonders how much one can dissent from the teaching authority of bishops while recognizing the formative strengths of his upbringing, this is a most revealing and insightful story. As a description of how much Catholicism and Protestantism have in common and how much is a defining tradition and resource in each, this is a reliable guide. On top of these excellent attributes, this is an irenic call to all Christians to become better Christians by appreciating the treasures to be found across the street, no matter from which side one is crossing, even when one is not looking for a new home.
Professor Emeritus of Religious Studies, St. Mary's College, Notre Dame, Indiana
Author of Finding My Way in Christianity and Creation in Scripture