The latest from John Bruce is quite a jaw-drop. I’m sure quite a few keep a watch on his blog without making any ado – as is usually the case for me. In A New Angle On The Oxford Movement, we read about the coincidence between railways in England and the Oxford Movement. After all, it all happened in the 1830’s!
We read that some of the most fantastic buildings of the time were railway stations like St Pancras in London. Most of the other stations like Victoria, Paddington, Kings Cross and Waterloo are grandiose but more mundane. There had to be plenty of space and ventilation so that people wouldn’t be suffocated by the coal smoke and the steam from the mighty locomotives. I don’t know many gothic stations in England, to be truthful.
“The Oxford Movement is a parallel tendency, a response to the industrial revolution, social upheaval, and the commercialization of society“. An aggiornamento? Really? I always thought that Romanticism was a reaction away from the Industrial Revolution rather than an adaptation to modern times!
I would mention that French Liberalism, also based on Romanticism and situated in the same time frame, had little to do with railways or The Machine. From that movement came Dom Guéranger, the monastic revival – and Ultramontanism. The Vatican has a private railway station, though I don’t think there are many trains running from it these days, even if Mussolini enforced the observance of Ferrovia dello Stato train times. However, a small railway still runs inside the Vatican to carry tourists. Most of the Parisian stations reflect the same Haussmann grandiosity as the church of Saint-Augustin next to the Gare Saint-Lazare. Perhaps John Bruce might consider visiting France and admiring the SNCF and the same institutional Church he spends his life defending.
This rather lovely building is from the end of the nineteenth century. It is (or was) a liquor factory making the famous Bénédictine of Fécamp. What a delicious drink to finish a meal! The grand hall of this place looks a bit like a church, and indeed my wife and I went to a concert there a few months ago. I wouldn’t be surprised to find out that the Direction of this distinguished firm gave generously to the Church.
There is also the High Court in London, which I always wished had been a church.
Would Anglo-Catholicism be a tad on the legalist side? Not just oof, oof, off, choo, choo!
Coming to the point, I see no connection between the Oxford Movement in England or Liberalism and Ultramontanism in France and the Industrial Revolution. Plenty with Romanticism and a new wave of philosophy and culture away from both the Ancien Régime and the Revolution.
I think that John Bruce is trying to convince us that our trashy Catholic Anglicanism is just a mix-and-match of the famous “private judgement” and therefore something to be shunned by “proper” Catholics. I won’t call the dear fellow names as I have done in the past, but will leave the reader to judge for himself…
Diese Zug ist für Bern, Zürich und Saint-Gallen. Bitte einsteig!
One feature of Protestantism, at least the Lutheran-Reformed version, is that it proved from the start amenable to state control. Anglo-Catholicism is, let’s face it, a version of state-controlled Protestantism that is not really compatible with Roman Catholicism. I don’t think Cardinal Law recognized this, and I don’t think Bp Lopes does, either.
I wonder what the poor man was smoking before he caught his train. Anglo-Catholicism, especially in the 1860’s and up to the twentieth century, tended to be something of a rebel in respect of Establishment control.