Married to the Church

Married to the Church

Raymond Hedin and Raymond Hedin
Distribution: World
Publication date: 12/22/1995
ISBN: 978-0-253-11455-6
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Praise for the first edition:
"A poignant and powerful truth works its way through Mr. Hedin’s stories.... These were men of high ideals, of moral passion, and many of them continue to struggle mightily to live honorable and generous lives." —Robert Coles, New York Times Book Review

A fascinating portrait of the priesthood today." —Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Originally published in 1995, this book about a group of Roman Catholic seminarians has been updated in the wake of the recent sexual abuse scandal in the church. In the 1950s, Raymond Hedin was one of a group of adolescents entering seminary during a time of dramatic change. When they emerged as young men, they found that their sense of themselves as special, chosen by God, afforded them no special protection from the turmoil they encountered—from without and within. Married to the Church tells the story of those men, the changes they have undergone, and the strategies they employ to live their lives well. For this new edition, Hedin re-interviewed many of these men to learn their reaction to the recent scandal and its impact upon their lives.

Author Bio

Raymond Hedin is Professor of American Literature at Indiana University. He spent his high school and college years at St. Francis Seminary in Milwaukee.


“Precisely because Hedin aims at the larger picture, this book provides a usefulcontext for understanding this crucial issue (the Catholic sex abuse scandal”
 — National Catholic Reporter

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Table of Contents

1. An Unfinished Story
2. From Permanence to Change: St. Francis Seminary 1957–69
3. Once a Seminarian
4. Return
5. The Personal Plight
6. The Social Plight: The Laity (Up), the Hierarchy (Distant), the Priests (Down)
7. Former Priests
8. A Livable Priesthood
9. A Sense of Story