The Soul-Sickness Of The Modern Church
By Joseph Joyce
Anyone who has lived through the five years following the end of the Second Vatican Council knows that a whirlwind blew through the Church, the effects of which are still with us. Legions of priests abandoned their vocations; thousands of nuns, suddenly stifled in their convents, abandoned the religious life to enter natural social work in place of their spiritual lives. One wonders just what “got into” these religious men and women. Did these evil effects come about merely because of the changes in the liturgical language and the religious habit?
For an answer to this we need to look beyond these surface issues. As serious as they are, there was a more severe change that was carefully concealed from the clergy, the religious and especially the laity. It was (and is) the massive adoption of a New Theology which almost totally displaced the traditional Thomistic theology — that based on the writings of St. Thomas Aquinas, the great Doctor of the Church. It is this New Theology that is the directing animus of the post-conciliar leaders of the modern church.
Those stormy years following the Council gave evidence of obvious blasphemy and heretical teachings. Why, we wonder, did the leaders seem to ignore the reports of liturgical novelties, blasphemous interpretation of the Scriptures, and an overt libertarianism so obvious in the parochial clergy, in the monasteries, the convents and the seminaries? Why were the prayers of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass changed, most notably in the words of the Consecration, so that the faithful were “prayerfully” acknowledging that ALL men are now to be considered as saved? Why has the notion of sin disappeared from the official prayers of the conciliar church, from the sermons, and even from the prayers for the deceased?
We can make a better judgment of things with the passage of time. Now we can say with complete certainty that this spiritual uproar was caused by the introduction of the New Theology. But, just what are the principles of this New Theology that are so devastating? They are new presentations of old heresies. For instance: A basic premise of the New Theology is the universal salvation of all mankind. For the new theologians, the original sacrifice of Jesus Christ, the man who was adopted by God, so transforms all mankind by that action, that the universal salvation of every man and woman is assured simply because of Christ’s death on the Cross. Whether or not each man or woman believes and accepts it is not that important for all men — without exception — are saved. Christ’s sacrifice of Calvary (they say) is the reason why the decrees of Vatican II can tell us that Jews are saved, Moslems are saved, and, yes, even the animists are saved.
The New Theology has ushered in the notion of “religious tolerance”. Any novelty, whether in theology or morality, can and must be tolerated as the expression of an individual choice of conscience. Is anyone following a personal course of action which should be condemned as sinful and perverse? No — don’t question it. Don’t take any action. If all are following what their consciences dictate, even if it is false and/or selfish, then the one who practices perversity will be saved, and we shouldn’t dare to judge their actions. Are you upset about abortion? Sure, many are, but a woman has a “right” to the actions which pertain to her own body. We can’t trespass into her choices and decisions. She and all who help her with the abortion will be saved. The only true evils are social inequality, poverty and economic injustice.
The conciliar church has tolerated nearly every course of action save one: Tradition. It is among the “traditionalists” that we find the Old Theology and the Old Morality. The “old ways” staunchly uphold that heresy, blasphemy, immorality and such things are worthy of condemnation, not toleration. The social activism of the “old ways” took religious and laity into the mission lands, not only to “civilize” those outside the Faith, and to assist the impoverished, but to convert them as well, leading them to the path of eternal salvation in the Roman Catholic Church. Offenses against God, His laws and those of His Church were the true sins of old. They are a far cry different from the “sins” of the new theologians: sexism, male chauvinism, homophobia and racism.
How could the religious men and women of the conciliar church change so radically? It all started with the toleration of the teaching of some new European “theologians”. These “experts” decided that Thomism was too stodgy, too conservative, and not in keeping with the modern cultural and philosophical trends. In the quest to discover the meaning of aggiornamento, men like Jean Cardinal Danielou, Henri de Lubac, Karl Rahner, and their eager disciples such as Hans Urs von Baltasar decided to “revisit” the ancient teachings — the ones formerly deemed heretical — and rework them according to modern development and the evolution of dogma (as the Modernists teach). “The Church was not ready for these teachings before,” they tell us, “but now it is.” And the gullible Catholics, the ones who chose to keep up with sports, personal fitness, the novels and television — it is these Catholics who swallowed up these new teachings because they failed to pray, sacrifice and study the most important things in life. A religion of ease, a way of life more tolerant of a selfish and perverse lifestyle is what they wanted, and it’s what they got.
What has been the answer by the conciliarists against those who embrace the Old Theology? In short, they (we) are considered as obstinate fools. All too often we are made to appear as backward nostalgics whose insistence in practicing the “old ways” is to be pitied and not imitated. We who are traditional are often regarded as insane and should, accordingly, be consigned to psychiatric treatment. This, they say, is the most humane way to show tolerance to such deviants.
Conservative Catholics in the conciliar churches need to wake up. They need to come out of the conciliar churches, find a traditional chapel, and adhere to it firmly. For the rest of us, it is important that we pray and sacrifice for the wayward clergy. Satan truly has taken hold of the highest places, but if we do penance, pray and sacrifice for those who have wandered from truth, we can be sure that God, in his mercy, will help them all back to the right path.