We can't understand the issues swirling in today's Catholic church without understanding the past. In Catholic History for Today's Church acclaimed historian John W. O'Malley, SJ, illuminates some of today's most contentious issues--from celibacy to the role of the pope--through their history. In his characteristically engaging style, O'Malley's essays provide readers with an overview of each theme in history then explore how that past connects with life today. Many of the essays highlight his expertise on the papacy and the papal curia, as well as the significance and legacies of the Council of Trent and Vatican II. By taking a historical approach, O'Malley shows how contemporary issues arose, assesses where they are today, and suggests how they might be changed for the better. Catholic History for Today's Church takes an invaluable long view on topics that too often find us shortsighted.