I can’t believe people in the Church today don’t even know who Irenaeus is. We’d do well to look back at our distinctly Catholic historical Fathers. What do you all think? Recent Popes seem to LOVE quoting historical heretics!
Yes, it looks like knowledge of the church fathers is surpringly scarce among some priests today… I watched a video where an arab catholic related speaking with a priest from the same área who apparently didn’t know too much about the heretic Arius, and as if to excuse himself said, “I slept through my history of Christianity classes in the seminary”
There is an interesting article about St Irenaeus in Wikipedia, it has some interesting info about his interpretation of the book of revelation.
One thing I never see taken into consideration in regards to the current state of affairs in the Church is the role of the internet. At the time of the Council, access to the writings of the Church Fathers, early Church Documents, etc. was relatively limited and, in some cases, restricted to a select few. The laity was at the mercy of the periti when it came to evaluating the accuracy and/or reliability of statements made by those involved in the Council. That the internet was going to develop a mere 30 years later, giving everyone free and unlimited access to all this information – and spawning a generation of fact-checkers – was something that none of them could foresee. None but the Holy Ghost, of course….
I think the internet will prove to be one of the most powerful tools for the renewal of the Church in the years to come. It’s up to us to make sure that the treasures of the past – not only the Church Fathers and Encyclicals, but also those forgotten gems published between Vatican I and Vatican II – are dusted off and presented to future generations of Catholics. As Cardinal Newman said, “To be deep in history is to cease to be Protestant.” This is all the more true in regards to traditional Catholicism: To go deep into the history of the Church is to reject modernism and embrace the fullness of Tradition.