What Should a Catholic Renewal Look Like?

What Should a Catholic Renewal Look Like?
(AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)

One of the ways that Catholics tell the story of modernity -- think for instance of Charles Taylor -- is as a loss of socially enforced religion that makes possible a more personal or heart-felt faith. If modernity is not an improvement, it at least represents a set of incommensurable goods; what we gain in authenticity leaves us at any rate no worse off. This view sits uneasily with earlier Catholic teaching, both about the relation of the individual to society and about the larger scheme of salvation — a scheme that, if you’ll pardon the slight impiety, attempts to shipwreck by baptism and the winds of social pressure as many souls as possible upon the broad shores of purgatory.

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