Antimodernismus und Modernismus in der katholischen Kirche. Beiträge zum theologiegeschichtlichen Vorfeld des II. Vatikanumsed. by Hubert Wolf (review)
- The Catholic Historical Review
- The Catholic University of America Press
- Volume 85, Number 1, January 1999
- pp. 62-64
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- Additional Information
62BOOK REVIEWS topics, thus leading to a great deal of repetition when one reads the complete text rather than sections of immediate interest. Surely, the primary audience for this book is the Sisters of St. Francis of Penance and Christian Charity. For members ofthe congregation, it is a valuable reference book. For an outsider, it can, at times, be tedious reading. In the various sections of Chapter IV, "Provinces: History 1900-1989," the national context is not clear from the outset; one must read one or more sentences to locate a province geographically. Explanatory endnotes, e.g., the note regarding the Sisters' relationship with Propaganda Fide rather than the Roman Congregation for Bishops and Regulars, would be more helpful as footnotes. Additionally, because it is an international community, the great amount of repetition can become burdensome, even boring, when reading the entire text. For the general reader, interest would have been greatly enhanced by a synthesis that included the unique characteristics of individual provinces. The original authors of each section are to be commended for their work. Along with more histories of American women religious, there is also a need for modern histories of international communities with provinces in the United States. As we become more and more aware of one world, we can benefit from the experience of women religious who have been living in an international context for many years. For readers with no particular association with the community, I suggest reading chapters I, II,V, and any particular section that might be of special interest. Barbara Misner, S.C.S.C. Sisters ofMercy ofthe Holy Cross Merrill, Wisconsin Antimodemismus und Modernismus in der katholischen Kirche. Beiträge zum theologiegeschichtlichen Vorfeld des IL Vatikanums. Edited by HubertWolf . (Paderborn: Ferdinand Schöningh. 1998.Pp. 397. 108DM.) The contributions in this edited volume originated in two symposia that focused on the development of German theology and religious culture between Vatican Councils I and II. Wolf's introductory essay establishes the cultural parameters ofthe volume. Modernization as a socio-historical concept means that since modern society is fragmented, so are its academic disciplines. Truth,then, can no longer be seen as absolute or objective, but now seems subjective and partial. The Catholic Church and its theologians, therefore, have had to engage an alien culture as well as to safeguard doctrine from what they perceived as the atomistic Enlightenment Project. As Wolf points out, there seems to be, at least in some respects, a direct line between some of the modernists' ideas and those ofJohn XXIII and Karl Rahner —not too surprising in view of the latter's transcendental subjectivity orientation . Until Vatican Council II, a centrality of control and even the persecution of dissidents seemed to characterize the institutional Church. With BOOK REVIEWS63 John XXIII a new correlative theology bridging the tension between Church and world began to emerge. The essays following that of Wolf try to explore the roots of the tension and the state of the question today. Otto Weiss has described how modernism was nurtured in the United States, France, Italy, and Germany. His survey is useful in seeing how gradually Christian life and faith began to reshape theology and doctrine. In fact, this ongoing bifurcation may well be at the base of the contemporary crisis in the Catholic Church, in which many of the faithful are declaring themselves Catholic even though they do not accept all of the institutional pronouncements of the Magisterium . Two modernistic perspectives have provoked conflict and simultaneously helped to define contemporary theological developments. The turn to the subject with its stress on religious immanence as well as the historicocritical methodology,while viewed with suspicion by Pius X, have become necessary to any Catholic theology that hopes to be contemporary and to incorporate historically some modes ofmodern development into ecclesial and theological discussions. Responding to some of the issues raised by the modernists , the Vatican II Church agreed that it had much to learn from the world. All the essays are excellent and illustrate the vibrancy of the life of the Church from 1870 to the 1960's. Martin Reis, for example, reminds the reader that German Catholics had a profound sense of socio...