Renewing Christianity: A History of Church Reform from Day One to Vatican II

By McNally, Michael J. | The Catholic Historical Review, April 2002 | Go to article overview

Renewing Christianity: A History of Church Reform from Day One to Vatican II


McNally, Michael J., The Catholic Historical Review


Renewing Christianity.'A History of Church Reform from Day One to Vatican II. By Christopher M. Bellitto. (Mahwah, New Jersey: Paulist Press. 2001. Pp. xii, 233. $18.95 paperback.)

Composing a one-volume history of the Western Church is a daunting task. Although his intended audience is not mentioned, Bellitto's work is aimed at the general public, as well as undergraduates and seminarians. An intellectual historian, he uses the idea of reform as his book's organizing principle. Although writing from a Catholic perspective, he demonstrates in his introduction that the concept of reform is one shared by all Christians.

Some authors have an ideological axe to grind, which both serves to shape and color their thoughts and also acts as a delimiting device to discard material which does not conform to their ideological perspective. To his credit, Bellitto refrains from doing this. Instead, he uses the idea of reform as a means to distill about 2,000 years of history into about 200 pages. Throughout the book he differentiates between personal and structural reform, as well as between reform in capite and in membris. He also distinguishes between reform as restorative and renewal as augmentative and ameliorative (p. 10).

His synthesis of the High and Later Middle Ages is excellent, as might be expected of a medievalist; yet one of his best chapters is on Vatican Council II, which he says breaks new ground with its emphasis on renewal, not just reform. His impartial thoughts on the council's fallout, namely, about polarization, about the speed of implementation, and about the links between the Councils of Trent and Vatican II, invite the reader to further reading and reflection.

Quoting primary sources mostly from secondary works, Bellitto places them judiciously in the text. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Renewing Christianity: A History of Church Reform from Day One to Vatican II
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.