Theological Trends between Vatican I and Vatican II
During the century between Vatican I and Vatican II, Catholicism was confronted with numerous and fundamental challenges to its teaching. Its default response was to re-emphasize traditional ways of doing theology. Endorsing Aquinas meant endorsing Scholasticism, the method of argument perfected in the medieval schools, and also the philosophy of Aristotle, which had been Aquinas’ and Scholasticism’s chief intellectual resource. In the period between the two Vatican councils, a more fundamental challenge to the dominance of Neo-Scholasticism was Roman Catholic Modernism. The renewal of the liturgy began in the nineteenth century, when French Benedictines sought to recover medieval musical traditions as part of the monastic revival after the French Revolution. Liturgical renewal envisioned reforming the worship experience not just for monks but for ordinary laypeople as well. Advocates for renewal were most concerned about the Mass, which they thought was no longer at the center of Catholics’ spiritual lives.
The Christian Theological Tradition, 4th ed.