“Evangelical Catholicism is not some 50-yard line between Catholic left and Catholic right, but a vision of Church far beyond those polarities,” argues George Weigel in today’s column. Answering critics of his new book, he summarizes his position:
I suggested that the past century and a quarter was the last, extended moment of Counter-Reformation Catholicism: the mode of being Catholic that came into being, largely through the Council of Trent, in response to the challenges of the Protestant Reformation and the first stirrings of modern cultural, social, economic, and political life. Now, I suggested, Counter-Reformation Catholicism—the way-of-being-Church in which every Catholic over fifty today grew up—was giving way to the Catholicism of the New Evangelization, or what myself and others call “Evangelical Catholicism.”
I thought this way of framing modern Catholic history offered a more complete account of the Catholic drama from my grandparents’ day to my grandson’s than was typically on offer. It linked Leo XIII to Vatican II via the reformist movements Leo’s pontificate had set in motion. And it stretched Vatican II and its authentic interpretation into the pontificates of two men, John Paul II and Benedict XVI, who as young participants at the Council had helped shape its call to the Church to re-imagine itself as a communion of disciples in mission.
Read the full piece here.