Opinion | The Ungovernable Catholic Church

By Ross Douthat

Opinion Columnist

The latest dramatic move by Pope Francis — his recent order abrogating the right of Roman Catholic priests to say their church’s traditional Latin Mass — fits neatly within a historical analogy that’s useful for understanding the larger drama of Catholicism: Namely, the church since the 1960s has been reliving the experience of France after 1789, with the arc of revolution and counterrevolution embodied in each successive pope.

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