Wednesday, July 05, 2006

English Catholicism: What can we do to save it?

There was a report on the collapse of English Catholicism recently released, which was aptly covered by our dear friend Hilary on, and less aptly covered in the Times of London, that apex of the mainstream press.

Do contrast Hilary's story with that of the Times. The Times has this laughable quote from Tom Horwood, author of The Future of the Catholic Church in Britain:
It is clear that if the Catholic Church in Britain is to successfully communicate its messages and persuade an increasingly secular and cynical audience it must change its approach. Reactionary, defensive tactics have failed.
The Times of course touches on the clergy abuse scandal, but dare not explore the collapse of the Church there in any depth, lest they discover the "reactionary" tactics are exactly what will save the church. But Hilary fears not, pointing out:
The collapse of the Catholic Church around the world coincides precisely with the period following Vatican II when bishops, clergy and religious decided to re-orient the Church to conform to secular values. Declining Catholic numbers can be correlated closely to decline in orthodox practice and preaching. The grim national statistics are often reversed in those areas and communities where traditional moral teaching, styles of worship and adherence to otherworldly
values are prominent.

We can count on the Times, and on the Catholic bishops of England and Wales, not to consider the difference in the Church that brought their nation the great converts of the 20th Century, including Chesterton, or the great converts of the 19th, including Newman, and the 21st century Church that features such laughable examples of lived faith as Cherie Blair.

No, a reactionary Catholicism can't save the faith in England, the only hope lies in even more of the progressive Churchmanship that we've seen in the last 40 years! If it says so in the Times, it must be so, indeed.


Curmudgeon said...

Anybody notice that I finally got a picture up? Woohoo! Maybe this weekend I can start posting my stack of church photos again!

Dust I Am said...

I've enjoyed your recent posts, as always. Yet your T-shirt item seemed to have retreated somewhat from the posts that have attracted attention to your blog. I was glad to see you returning to the REAL MEAT menu with "English Catholicism: What Can We Do To Save It?"

Curmudgeon said...

Now, now, Dusty. The ultimate purpose of the blog isn't to attract attention to's to give me an outlet for whatever I might be thinking.

And sometimes I think serious thoughts. But sometimes I don't.

Do you like the Cherie Blair picture I found, BTW? It's a beauty.

Anonymous said...

Can't help but think the problem has been made worse by a weak Catholic Church.


Early terminations push abortion rate to record level
By Sarah Womack, Social Affairs Correspondent

(Filed: 05/07/2006)

Abortions have reached record levels, and nearly a third of women who have an abortion have had one or more before.

Department of Health statistics reveal that abortions in England and Wales rose by more than 700 in 2005, from 185,713 in 2004 to 186,416.

More than 1,000 girls under 15 had an abortion, an increase of 4.7 per cent in a year.

Anonymous said...

Do you like the Cherie Blair picture I found, BTW? It's a beauty.

Imagine waking up to that each morning. It would be enough to make you want to invade a helpless middle eastern nation. Anything to get you out of the house.