Is the Catholic Church going through ‘a time of intense difficulty or danger’ today? The answer is clearly ‘yes’, and this has been the case since the end of the Second Vatican Council.
Along with Pope John XXIII, Pope Paul VI presided over and was responsible for the scandalous disaster which was Vatican II, but even he was lucid enough (at least momentarily) to exclaim in 1968, just three years after the end of the Council, that: “The Church today finds Herself in a state of disquiet, self-criticism, one might even say of self-destruction. It is like an interior upheaval, acute and complex, which no one expected after the Council…as though the Church were striking Herself.”
Why does it matter if the Catholic Church is in crisis? It matters because the Catholic Church is the Bride of Christ, the divinely appointed mouthpiece of God on earth, and the only way for men to get to Heaven. If It is in crisis, God is seriously offended and souls go to Hell for all eternity.
Of course, our Faith tells us that the Church Itself is perfect and that It will never be overcome by the Gates of Hell. However, the human element (i.e. Popes, bishops and priests) of the Church has no such guarantee. It is this human element which is in crisis today. We have to be aware of this crisis so that we can avoid its disastrous consequences in our souls, in our families and in our countries and so that we can work, with the help of God, to bring it to an end as soon as possible.