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The Religion of Man - Since the Council there has been a new Church
By Bishop Antonio de Castro Mayer
By Bishop Antonio de Castro Mayer
Diocesan bulletin, April 1972
Because of the difficulty of the undertaking, or be it by a compromise with the spirit of the times, the fact is:
In the implementation of the plan outlined by Vatican II, in most of the Catholic world, the attempt to adapt has gone beyond simply a means of expression more in conformity with the mentality of the day.
It has even touched the essence of Revelation itself. They do not preoccupy themselves with explaining revealed Truth in such a way as to enable man to understand it more easily; rather their goal, by using ambiguous and flowery language, is to put forward a new Church to man’s tastes formed according to the maxims of the modern world.
With that, they now spread, more or less everywhere, the idea that the Church must undergo a radical change in its morality, in its liturgy, and even in its doctrine. In what has been written and done in Catholic milieu since the [Vatican II] Council, the thesis has been spread that the Traditional Church, such as it existed until Vatican II, is no longer adequate for the needs of modern times, so that it must be completely transformed.
A profound observation on what has taken place in Catholic circles leads to the conviction that, truly, since the Council there is a new Church that is essentially distinct from the one we knew prior to the Council, as the unique Church of Christ. Indeed, human dignity is now exalted as an absolute and untouchable principle to whose rights truth and good must submit.
A similar idea launches the Religion of man. It makes us forget Christian austerity and the beatitude of Heaven.
As for morality, the same principle causes us to forget about Christian asceticism, and it is full of an indulgence for pleasure, even sensual pleasure, because it is on earth that man must find his fulfillment.
As for family and married life, the Religion of man celebrates love and puts pleasure over duty, thus justifying contraception, weakening opposition to divorce, and favoring homosexuality and co-education, without a fear of the ensuing moral disorders, inherent in this attitude as the consequences of original sin.
In public life, the Religion of man does not understand hierarchy, and defends the egalitarianism proper to Marxist ideology (and which is contrary to both natural and revealed teaching) which assures the existence of a social order which nature itself demands.
In the field of religion, the same principle encourages, for the benefit of man, an ecumenism which reconciles all religions and wishes to establish a church that resembles a society of social assistance, and renders the sacred unintelligible, because it can only be understood in a society based on hierarchy.
Whence this excessive preoccupation with the promotion of clergy, whose celibacy is now considered to be absurd, along with the restraint of a priestly life which is intimately tied to the character of a consecrated person wholly devoted to the service of the altar.
In the liturgy, the priest is reduced to a simple representative of the people. The changes are such and so numerous that the liturgy ceases to represent, suitably, in the eyes of the faithful, the image of the Spouse of the Lamb, one, holy and immaculate.
It is evident that the relaxation of morals as well as the liturgical breakdown cannot co-exist with the immutability of dogma. In reality, these changes indicate already alterations in the concept of revealed truths. A reading of the new theologians, understood spokesmen of the Council, demonstrates how, in fact, in certain Catholic milieu, the words used to state the mysteries of the Faith imply concepts completely different from those of traditional theology.