Info

On the level of ideology and Weltanschauung, Catholic identity was characterised by an antimodernist cultural code based on antiliberalism, antisocialism and antifreemasonry. Such anti-positions also found expression in rites and religious practices, such as anti-Judaism in the Passion plays. Mass pilgrimages to the statue of Our Lady of Einsiedeln, or the veneration of Pius IX, were manifestations of the transformation of Catholicism from a traditional religion into a mass one.16

The centralisation of church authority, which reached a climax in 1870 with the definition of the dogma of papal infallibility, led to resistance from 'liberal' Catholics. Between 1871 and 1876, in the wake of the Kulturkampf, some of these Catholics went on to found the Christ-Catholic Church. This movement initially also had a political character, bringing together politically liberal Catholics. The central figure in the constitutional phase of Christian Catholic theology was Eduard Herzog, Professor of New Testament at the University of Berne and the first Christian Catholic bishop.17

Clerical and lay elites played a crucial role, and occupied positions of power in the Catholic milieu, producing and mediating cultural codes and descriptions of society. The only Catholic associational structure which had survived the civil war, the Schweizerische Studentenverein, founded in 1841, became a central network for Catholic elites. In the second half ofthe nineteenth century a number of more or less interrelated networks can be observed which differed in their attitudes towards the liberal state and Ultramontanism. Whereas in homogeneously Protestant cantons Catholic organisations were rare, in regions affected by the Kulturkampf, such as Solothurn, St Gall and Argovia and the diaspora, a strong milieu was constituted, and in predominantly Catholic regions loose structures dominated by the Church were prevalent. Among the elites we can identify an Ultramontane network predominant in Fribourg, in the Kulturkampf regions and in the diaspora and a more moderate conservative one developing out ofthe Catholic cantons of central Switzerland.18

Ultramontane elites created associations on a national level. For more than a quarter of a century, the publicist Theodor Scherer-Boccard was one of their leaders. From 1857 to his death in 1885, he presided over the first nationwide Catholic association, the Piusverein. In Fribourg the young priest Joseph

16 Altermatt, 'Ambivalence of Catholic modernisation'; Altermatt, Katholizismus und Antisemitismus, pp. 59-96. For this trend elsewhere in Catholic Europe see chapter 5 above.

17 See Arx, 'Christkatholische Kirche'; Conzemius, Katholizismus ohne Rom.

18 See Altermatt and Metzger, 'Milieu, Teilmilieus und Netzwerke'; Altermatt, Der Weg der Schweizer Katholiken ins Ghetto; Altermatt (ed.), 'Den Riesenkampf mit dieser Zeit zu wagen...'.

Was this article helpful?

0 0

Post a comment