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ConfessionCatholics, Repentance, and Forgiveness in America$
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Patrick W. Carey

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780190889135

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190889135.001.0001

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From Confession to Reconciliation, Vatican II to 2015

From Confession to Reconciliation, Vatican II to 2015

Chapter:
(p.225) Chapter 9 From Confession to Reconciliation, Vatican II to 2015
Source:
Confession
Author(s):

Patrick W. Carey

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190889135.003.0010

This chapter delineates the dramatic decline between 1960 and 2015 in the practice of sacramental penance and other penitential practices and a weakened consciousness of the biblical penitential language associated with the practices. The American cultural revolution of the 1960s and the paradigmatic shift in theology at the Second Vatican Council influenced those developments. The post-conciliar church, however, created new sacramental rites of confession that emphasized the social and ecclesial dimensions of sin and reconciliation, hoping to generate a renewed penitential consciousness. A loss of the sense of sin, though, made it very difficult for popes, bishops, and priests to revive the penitential confessional tradition. In its long history, the church experienced major changes in the theology and practice of penance, but the rapidity of the change in the fifty years after Vatican II was unprecedented, with the possible exception of the changes that took place during the Protestant Reformation.

Keywords:   Vatican II, first confession, reconciliation, sin, fundamental option, Carroll Dozier, general absolution, reform, James Dallen, David Coffey

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