A Look at Vatican II and the State of the Roman Catholic Church



This month marks 50 years since the Second Vatican Council convened at St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome, ushering in a modern era for Catholics and one that changed the way they worshiped and how the Church responded to the rest of the world. On this hour, we’ll talk about Vatican II and the state of the Roman Catholic Church in our modern world today.


  • James Carroll (author, columnist for the Boston Globe and Distinguished-Scholar-in-Residence at Suffolk University)
  • Dr. Leo Madden (Associate Professor of Theology and Head of the Department of Theology at Ohio Dominican University)

Learn More

Click here for more information on Vatican II: The Essential Documents by James Carroll.

Join The Conversation

  • Frank Hartge

    I just had the chance to listen to this program, and continue to wonder, Ann, why it is that with every show dealing with the Catholic Church, you insist on having guests with the most dissident views? James Carroll is, as you noted, notoriously NOT in agreement with many of the Church’s teachings. In this interview, he conveyed much erroneous, though popular, information about the work of Vatican II, particularly in his discussion of the Liturgy. The reforms of the Mass were not primarily about allowing the vernacular language – in fact the document on the liturgy specifically calls for the use of Latin to be preserved. Further, nothing in the Vatican II documents called for the reconfiguration of the sanctuaries to accommodate a table-style altar facing the people. 

    While Mr. Madden provided some balance, he was brought on much too late in the program. 

    I’ll continue to listen, but your approach to Catholic issues never seems to live up to the “All Sides” goal which one expect based on the name of the program.  

    • Capaoh

      Indeed, I am a professor of the history of religion, and I was deeply concerned about the serious inaccuracies articulated by James Carroll. Ann, you should know better!

  • Conrad

    This was a wonderful episode. My thanks.