The Preaching of Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen

The Gospel Meets the Cold War

By (author) Timothy H. Sherwood

Publication date:

18 March 2010

Length of book:

168 pages

Publisher

Lexington Books

ISBN-13: 9780739142615

The greatness of America's most influential preachers of the twentieth century came from their significant contributions to both religious and secular society. Some names, like Martin Luther King, Jr. and Billy Graham, are universally recognized and typically thought of first by people today. Assorted reviews have also listed other notable names from various Christian denominations, but little recognition has been given to the Catholic contribution to preaching in the twentieth century.

Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen is at least one Catholic name whose contributions belong with the top most influential American preachers of that era. Though many associate Sheen with his five years on primetime television in the 1950s, it was the decades he spent preaching that wrought a religious tone to the Cold War and led the way in a national renewal of religion. An epic battle was set between the forces of good and evil in Sheen's preaching, particularly in his Good Friday sermons. This rhetorical study seeks to understand how and why his preaching was so persuasive to the people of his day.
Few preachers have stirred souls and moved hearts as did Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen. I am happy to recommend Father Timothy Sherwood's The Preaching of Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen. He does a splendid job of focusing on the Archbishop's preaching, rhetorical skill, and Christian vision. A good read of this book will help everyone understand how and why Archbishop Sheen influenced generations of American Catholics and non-Catholics alike.