In 1770, the priest Nicolas Vernier was accused of neglecting church services, inappropriate behaviour in the confessional, financial improprieties, and affairs with the village schoolmistresses. In a contentious church court case, parishioners described all of their priest’s wrongdoings, and in turn, he de- tailed many of theirs. Ultimately, Vernier finished his career as a cathedral canon in another diocese. Scandal in the Parish recounts Vernier’s story and many similar eighteenth- century cases. In fascinating detail that reveals essential facets of rural religion during the Catholic Reformation period, Karen Carter considers French lay people’s relationship with their parish curé, who governed and influenced so much of their religious practice. Although the priest’s role as purveyor of God’s grace through the sacraments was secure as long as he performed his duties appropriately, priests who were unable to navigate the pressures and high expectations put on them by their superiors and parishioners risked broken relationships, public disturbances of the peace, and even prosecution. These scandals, Carter demonstrates, tell us much about rural parish life, the processes of negotiation and accommodation between curés and their parish- ioners, and ongoing religious reforms and enforcement throughout the eighteenth century. An engaging venture into the world of the parish that highlights the cen- trality of the priest-parishioner relationship, Scandal in the Parish reveals the attitudes and practices of ordinary people who were active agents in their religious and spiritual lives. Karen E. Carter is associate professor of history at Brigham Young University. During a period of great religious upheaval, Anglican philosopher and ecclesi- astic Henry Longueville Mansel (1820–1871) became famous for his 1858 Bampton Lectures, which sought to defend traditional faith by employing a skeptical philosophy. In Scripture, Skepticism, and the Character of God Dane Neufeld explores the life and thought of the now forgotten nineteenth- century theologian. Examining the ideological differences between this philosopher and his contemporaries, Neufeld makes a case for the coherence of Mansel’s position and traces the vestiges of his thought through the generations that followed him. Mansel found himself at the centre of an explosive debate concerning the Christian scriptures and the moral character of the God they described. Though the rise of science is often credited with provoking a crisis of doubt, shifting ideas about humanity and God were just as central to the spiritual un- rest of the nineteenth century. Mansel’s central argument, that the entire Bible must be read as a unified witness to the reality of God, provoked disagreement among theologians, churchmen, and free thinkers alike who were uncomfort- able with certain aspects of the scriptural portrayal of God’s activity and char- acter. Mansel’s attempt to reconcile theological skepticism with scripturalism was misunderstood. He was branded a hopeless fideist by the free thinkers and a dangerous skeptic by high, broad, and evangelical churchmen alike. Many of the controversies in contemporary Christianity concern the colli- sion between modern morality and biblical renderings of God. Neufeld argues that Henry Mansel, while a deeply polarizing figure, brought clarity and precision to this debate by exposing what was at stake for Christian belief and biblical interpretation in the Victorian period. Dane Neufeld is the rector of All Saints’ Anglican Church and adjunct faculty at the University of Toronto’s Wycliffe College. M Q U P S P R I N G 2 0 1 9 4 3 R E L I G I O U S S T U D I E S • B R I T I S H H I S T O R Y F R E N C H H I S T O R Y • H I S T O R Y O F R E L I G I O N Scripture, Skepticism, and the Character of God The Theology of Henry Mansel dane neufeld The intersection of the Bible, the morality of God, and the crisis of faith in Victorian England. Scandal in the Parish Priests and Parishioners Behaving Badly in Eighteenth-Century France karen e. carter An eye-opening examination of rural French Catholi- cism through stories told by priests and parishioners in church court records. S P E C I F I C AT I O N S June 2019 -5,7a755pl7l5la7l 4SSaiaac bAU1 4SSaiaac Dc1 k,,iaa $.9ru n B - ppn66 0g99T omot.oN.0 S P E C I F I C AT I O N S ($Ht..7’d008L3 crdCt03 t8 ru0 @t3r92f 9E w0.t:t98 May 2019 -5,7a755pl7lnnS7h 4psi-l£ bAU1 4psi-l£ Dc1 kshi-- 6o602 -5,7a755pl7lnna75 4Ssaiaac bAU1 4Ssaiaac Dc1 k-niaa $.9ru n B - ps,66 5 roN.03 0g99T omot.oN.0