Book, “Has the Catholic Church Gone Mad?” John Eppstein

Nihil obstat – Imprimatur Victor Guazzelli v.g. Westminster, 3 March 1971

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“Yes!” Mr. Eppstein answers to the question in the title. But the madness of it all lies not so much in the issues being fought out within the Church as in the total disregard, by all concerned, of the faith and the needs of the ordinary believing Catholic.

Starting with Pope John’s “monumental imprudence” in convoking Vatican II (the point at which the dementia began), the author, citing among other things, liturgical reform, the machinations of the “anti-papal party” (inspired by Teilhard, headed by Kung, Suenens, et al.), and the puerilities of contemporary papal diplomacy, argues that the Church is bent on self-destruction. And this, indeed, is madness of a kind. But all is not lost, for, in spite of herself, the Church — the true Church, the Church of Rome and Romanism — will survive the determination of the conspirators to infect her with their own moral and intellectual decadence. There is, in effect, little that Mr. Eppstein finds right in the Church today, and his work has a quality of despair only slightly mitigated by the elegance of diction with which it is articulated. Much of what he says makes great sense; and the rest deserves at least to be reflected upon. Unfortunately, however, it has become almoxt axiomatic that “”conservative”” books do not sell in a liberal church; and that is perhaps the only single aspect of madness that Mr. Eppstein has ignored. 

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