Sunday, November 26, 2017

Is it time to move beyond Vatican II?

An excerpt from a recent church bulletin in Windsor, Canada:
So much justification for departures from orthodox Catholic teaching has been proffered in the name of Vatican II over the past 50 years, that one can become numb. In recent years questions have started to arise as to how long Vatican II can serve as a motivating force. The circumstances that brought about the convocation of the Second Vatican Council are no longer the driving factors in contemporary Catholic life. Nowadays we are facing new challenges: Dramatically falling Mass attendance, an aging Catholic populace without adequate replacement from the young, a lack of priestly and religious vocations, declining standards for liturgy and sacred music, and so forth. Ecumenism and relations with our Protestant brethren must no longer be primary concerns when Catholics themselves do not sufficiently understand their own faith. The old justifications have become tired, while the growth of traditional liturgy, the devotional life, Latin Mass communities, and the authentic fellowship found therein have become concrete examples of how Catholicism can flourish when it is presented and lived in all its fullness.

These notions have been articulated thoroughly and thoughtfully by Fr. Hugh Somerville-Knapman, OSB, a Benedictine monk and priest in England, in a blog post, Vale Vatican II. One excerpt:
“It happened over half a century ago, was conditioned by and directed to the world of the 1960s, a world that has changed beyond recognition as of 2017. It described itself as a pastoral council, and it sought to repackage the teaching, life and worship of the Church to suit a world in flux. For this very reason the Council was necessarily going to have a best-before date. That date has been passed. The sad thing is that its milk turned sour very soon after packaging.”
The full post is here:
[Hat tip to A.B.]

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