Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Taylor Marshall Sits on the Shoulders of Giants

My first online exposure to Dr. Taylor Marshall was, what, three or four years ago when I read about this new online Institute he founded where you can take classes in theology and philosophy with an emphasis on the wisdom of St. Thomas Aquinas.  Having studied Thomistic philosophy myself, I even wondered for a moment if his program includes other teachers.  Being a former teacher—actually I firmly believe in the saying “once a teacher, always a teacher”—I’d love to teach courses on Thomistic thought. But I digress.

This week Dr. Marshall released his new book, which I expect to be a best seller in trad circles, called Infiltration: the Plot to Destroy the Church from Within.  

The premise is that the Church has become in Her practical life overtaken by destructive forces that have come together progressively since the nineteenth century. He explains the Modernist Crisis and its roots in Freemasonry, Communism, and other fundamentally anti-Catholic ideologies.

The price tag does seem modest, and listening lately on occasion to Dr. Taylor’s podcasts, I can say I like him personally and his theological perspective.  He brings to the table something young and popular, appealing perhaps to younger generations.  And consider the impressive fact he founded one of the most successful and fruitful Catholic scouting organizations, the Troops of St. George, as a rightful alternative to the Boy Scouts of America,pardon me the now PC gender neutral “Scouts BSA.”

But reading reviews of this book, in particular this week by Fr. Z, while the book’s style may be fresh and interesting, it does seem to be mainly a re-presentation of what, frankly, many of us have already learned from traditional Catholic intellectual giants studying the post-Vatican II period.  I have no doubt Dr. Marshall likewise sat at their footsteps, or rather on their shoulders to see the forest from the trees.

Giants like Archbishop Lefebvre, Romano Amerio, Michael Davies, Fr. Malachi Martin, John Senior,
Christopher Ferrara, to name a few.

According to Fr. Z anyway, the book reads like it was written in a hurry and is somewhat lacking in footnotes.

What I would say is, this book may help a certain target audience who might otherwise be ignorant there actually is a Crisis in the Church, but even better if it could present the information as coming explicitly from the intellectual traditionalist giants of the last fifty years.  Is all Okie Trad is saying sitting here this evening in my Okie Armchair.

Dr. Taylor Marshall, a concert from Anglicanism, who is still relatively new to the Traditional Movement, just like all of us, sits on the shoulders of giants to see the bigger picture.  Wishing his book and future contributions a success.