Tentative Publication date: Early November
Size: 5.5 x 8.5
Our institutions appear to simultaneously work and not work. Institutional dysfunction is everywhere, and we know it. Yet even those who do not comprehend its cause can at least feel its effect; Western governments keen on social experiments, colleges charging fortunes to plunder our children, decades of economic doctrine—whether from the Capitalist or the Socialist—has proven unfit for humans, and then there is the “synodal Church” which rests on the embers of a progressive spirituality quickly running out of gas. Of course, the purpose of the Incarnation was not to fix our institutions. Christ came to free man from death, to convert our hearts, and historically the fire of his love and the hope of eternal beatitude kept the faithful going under the most oppressive circumstances. But in the post-Christian society we’ve inhabited, our convictions have waned and often led men and women to willingly adopt the very errors and social vices we also complain about.
In these essays from1958 to 1959, Carol Robinson holds up a light to reveal the concessions and daily choices Catholics make to appease the City of Man—seeds of Modernism, Moral Therapeutic Deism, or neo-paganism—while pointing to virtue, cooperation with supernatural grace, and fidelity to Christ and his Church as the antidote for building the City of God. Robinson feared the sin of not addressing the former would inevitably lead to the decay of the latter. She was right. As this modest volume goes to press, thousands of synod small groups will have gathered worldwide to talk about the future of the Catholic Church. Would that they read Carol Robinson instead. —Richard Aleman, editor-in-chief, The Distributist Review
In this latest volume of her Collected Works, Carol Robinson provides us with a vivid portrait of Catholic life in America on the eve of the Second Vatican Council. These essays give us brief but clear-eyed glimpses into a bygone historical era, but the situations they address are of ongoing interest, focusing as they do on the perennial problem of how spiritually serious lay Catholics should live out their faith while navigating the promises and pitfalls of a secular world. Robinson’s analyses, and even more so her wise and practical advice, remain as fresh and insightful for the current reader as the day when they were first published. —Gregorio Montejo, Ph.D., Historical Theology