Thoughts on Vatican II and a question for you
In my view, the problems within the Church in the twentieth century stem almost entirely from Modernism.  As cliché as that answer may sound, I believe it is the root of all the corruption (morally, spiritually and otherwise) at least since the mid-nineteenth century.  Had all the hierarchy and laity within the Church been more able (willing?) to root out Modernist ideas and the priests/religious who held to Modernism in one form or another, then the Second Vatican Council would have been conducted in an entirely different manner...if it had been convoked at all.  It was bad timing, it seems, to hold the Council when so many Modernists (or quasi-Modernists) were able to exert influence on the Council or on the interpretations of the Council in one way or another.  The difficulty with Modernists, though, is they can successfully hide themselves until such a time that they are able to make an impact on whatever target for which they are aiming.  Modernists often have a way of saying one thing that most people will understand as being credible, while at the same time meaning quite something else.  They are cleverly able to turn a phrase so that it seem indifferent or, worse, positive to the Faith, yet in reality the phrase may be very harmful.

The Modernists were able to "hide" themselves well enough for 50-60 years before the Council which gave them time to organize, share ideas and so forth, so that when the time came they were able to strike and impact the Council.  The Modernists were, I think, very successful in influencing several documents at the Council so that even if a statement could be read traditionally so that there was no change in Church teaching, it also left open the possibility of other interpretations which are disastrous to the Faith.  I think this has been better explained by those more read and intelligent than I, but I think it is worth repeating.

I think there were three ways around the "mess" of Vatican II and its aftermath: 1) to root out Modernism before the Council to such an extent that they could not influence the Council or the interpretation of the Council, 2) not hold the Council at all or 3) the Council should have been held during the reign of Pope Pius X when more of those within the Church were actively against Modernism.  Option 1 would have been good, though by rooting out Modernism it may have made the Council unneccessary.  Option 2 would have been good, except the Church would still need to find a way to publicly and thoroughly exterminate the corruption of Modernism.  Option 3, I believe, would have been the best option, but there was no guarantee that the Modernists at that time would not have done the same thing that they did during/after Vatican II.

Honestly, I am glad I neither was nor am a cleric (especially a bishop, let alone the Pope!) during the last two centuries.  The Church has been attacked from all sides, including from within.  It is difficult at times to determine who is the enemy, who are your allies and who are mostly indifferent so that they blow with the wind.  I believe that many clerics had the best intentions during the 1950-1970s and truly wanted to strengthened people's faith.  They sadly were misled all the way by many within the hierarchy and they probably should have known better, but I still think they they tried (and continue to do so) to get people to heaven.  For example, they may have thought that celebrating Mass in the vernacular really would help people understand and appreciate the Mass better - though they eventually became blind to all the negative impacts this has had.  They may have truly believed that giving people more "options" in how they conduct themselves, such as choosing other more personal forms of penance on Fridays, would have a more profound impact on their souls - but they fail to see that people simply choose to do no penance on Friday.  These negative things have now become so ingrained in people that they truly have no clue that anything else is better, required or beneficial.  They become lost.

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Re: Thoughts on Vatican II and a question for you - by Miles_Dei - 07-23-2009, 02:26 PM

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