Bullivant's book "Mass Exodus" (after Vatican II)

Anyone read this? Sorry if it’s been discussed already…
I am curious about the point about the failure of Catholic culture after Vatican II costing the Church many souls.

Having lived through it, I don’t have any great desire to read about it.

IMHO the Church and its clergy did some dopey things, but I don’t feel it’s right to blame the Church for “Catholics who leave”. When the Browns have umpteen losing seasons, you still support the team. When the Church has some lousy seasons, you still support the Church. Yes it is frustrating and you wish they would get a better quarterback and coach, but there are still good, enjoyable things about it.

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As he points out, close-knit Catholic parishes began to fall apart in both countries well before the Second Vatican Council and this is probably more attributable to a decline in social institutions generally around that time (1960’s onwards). That said, immediately after WWII there was an increase in vocations and volunteering in general. I’m not sure I’d agree that “the Church” did dopey things - certainly many clergy and some bishops did.


Dopey things indeed. My old traditional and liturgically orthodox parish went a little crazy. Things eventually got straightened out, but it took awhile, Those who stayed through those several weird decades deserve credit for perseverence.

As long as the book is not just another stereotypical Council bashing diatribe. it has been made eminently clear that the implementation of the council’s reforms went off the rails. American culture had already begun the sea change of the post WWII era when all of this came together. It was a perfect cultural storm warring against the Church once the world stopped being at war.

I didn’t read anywhere in the book review that Vatican II had any significant contribution to what the author calls disaffiliation from the Church, not to be confused with cultural disaffiliation which he also talks about. The cultural disaffiliation was one that started before VII.

The author is claiming that VII should have stemmed that tide more than it did. But how does he quantify that? He discounts the opposite theory that VII actually kept more people from leaving the Church.

In my experience, many friends and family have said that without VII they would have certainly left the Church, or if they already had stopped practicing, they never would have come back because the programs that brought them back would not have been possible before VII.

Yes, but have you ever worn a brown paper bag over your head when you go to Mass? :sweat_smile:

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Well played! :rofl:

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One struggles to understand how others might be of the opinion that the last Ecumenical Council caused people to leave the Church.

The Second Vatican Council has nothing to do with the 'Mass Exodus".

The unfortunate peculiarities of secularism are to blame for that.

It wasn’t the Council. The Council was fine.
But in many parishes or dioceses, it seems, that after the Council, the entire parish was turned over to the “Liturgists” to do with as they pleased. And to quote a saying from those days:

Q. What is the difference between a liturgist and a terrorist?
A. You can negotiate with a terrorist.

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