THE KINGDOM STIRS ANGER
AT FRANCISCAN UNIVERSITY
Didn’t I know that Mary remained a virgin and never gave birth to any other children? If I wrote that Jesus had a brother, surely I must be dabbling in heresy.
I explained to him that the book draws on early Christian writings (the so-called “non-canonical gospels”) that describe Joseph as an older widowed man with children at the time he took Mary as his wife. It doesn’t conflict with either the Bible — which says nothing about Joseph’s age and family circumstances — or with Christian Tradition. In fact, it’s been certified by the Catholic Writers Guild as being consistent with Church teaching.”
His misassumption reflected the fact that he’d only heard about the book and hadn’t read it. But then, that’s key, isn’t it. Not only can’t you judge a book by its cover, you can’t fully know what ideas it espouses until you’ve read it.
This truth is relevant to a controversy swirling around Franciscan University of Steubenville.