Jul 12, 2006

The Great Catholic Retreat--Chapter 5: The Wind Changes

The consecrations of the four bishops of the Society of St. Pius X and their excommunications in 1988 led to the formation of several new traditional Catholic communities approved by Rome. These communities (FSSP and others) were forbidden or discouraged by many local Bishops. Where allowed to be established, traditional priests provided great spiritual help to more and more Catholics who began to see vital differences between a traditional Catholic church and a local Novus Ordo church.

By the 1990s, young Catholic families began to find and encourage each other in pro-life activities, natural family planning interests, and especially home-schooling of children. Where a Latin Mass community was established, these Catholic families found each other and quickly and fervently embraced the traditional Church.

Also in that period, the Church had begun to ordain a few hidden Peter's, Paul's, James's, and John's who were called to enter Modernist-controlled seminaries, but somehow had the true faith through independent study and prayer. The prayers and sufferings of these loyal young priests were instrumental in the early, but partial, recovery of many local churches.

At the beginning of the 21st century, the wind direction had changed, and Modernism became “old.” In contrast, Catholic Tradition became “new” and exciting. Thus, Modernism reached its apex and orthodox Catholicism began to reappear and grow in some local Novus Ordo churches.

The great debacle of homosexual priests in the U.S. Church in the early 2000s provided a setback from which the Modernist Bishops never recovered. The result was a serious loss of Church funds and property, the removal of certain high-level bishops, and (because of loss of operating funds) the consequent removal of many hired personnel who controlled Church offices and organizations. In its public humiliation, the Church and many priests found a humility that began to bring them closer to Christ and his Cross.

Historians now identify specific times of recovery of local churches in documents and addresses issued by bishops. The recovery in a particular diocese can often be pinpointed to the time that the local bishop no longer references Vatican II in his major documents.

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