Reforming the Catholic Tradition

“Wake up, and strengthen what remains and is about to die,

for I have not found your works complete in the sight of my God.”



Cardinal Newman once stated that to be deep in church history is to cease to be Protestant. These essays argue that, on the contrary, to be Protestant is simply to be a principled catholic. In one sense, the Protestant tradition just is the catholic tradition shorn of excess and reduced to truly “universal” doctrine and principle. We embrace God’s calling to maturity by learning to be active participants in the universal church as it grows into fuller understanding of God's revelation. Openness to reform is not silly submission to the ethos of each age, but is rather the insistence that all of our understanding must submit (in the classic formula of Luther) to the bar of the Scripture and plain reason, which stands above and judges the church in each era. The whole Word stands in judgment over our fractured communities and fragmented understanding.

However, it is the whole church which participates in this motion toward maturity, and which must commit to growing together rather than growing apart. This includes both a deference to our learned forefathers and a willingness to be confronted with new insight into God's revelation. Taken together, this collection of essays constitute an invitation into this great project, which has its end in the glory of the Lord Jesus, and the freedom of His chosen saints.

Paperback. xiv + 199 pp.

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Table of Contents


Joseph Minich, The Davenant Institute

1 Is Christ Divided?: Why Reformed Catholicity Needs Reformed Ecclesiology

Bradford Littlejohn, The Davenant Institute/Patrick Henry College

2 Reforming Catholicity in Tudor England: John Jewel’s Doctrine of the Universal Church

Andre Gazal, North Greenville University

3 Reformed Catholicity and the Analogy of Being

Steven J. Duby, Grand Canyon University


On Eschewing the Labyrinths: Why Protestants Should Not Resurrect the “Spiritual Reading” of Scripture

Iain Provan, Regent College

5 Biblical Interpretation and Natural Knowledge: A Key to Solving the Protestant Problem

David Haines, Veritas International University

6 What Happened in the Search for Liturgical Catholicity?

Christopher Dorn, Pastor

7 Weekly Communion: A Criterion of Catholicity? A Short Survey of Historical Claims in Reformed Debates

Gregory Soderberg, LAMP Seminary


Edited by Joseph Minich (Ph.D, UT-Dallas). Dr. Joseph Minich is the Editor-in-Chief of the Davenant Press. He is the author of Enduring Divine Absence: The Challenge of Modern Atheism and the editor of several recent publications from Davenant.

Other Books in this Series

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