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The Modern Era's Central Tensions in the Roman Catholic Church In his story of the time from the French Revolution to the present in Church History: Twenty Centuries of Catholic Christianity of the Roman Catholic Church, John C. Dwyer makes it clear he has several goals in mind for where the church needs to finish up, and his account gives us a feeling that it is all leading up to these aims. They are largely accomplished by the time he gets into the Second Vatican Council, even though in some ways they are left undone even in the end. One of those goals is that the Church must forget about holding on to the Papal States, and what's more, the Pope should not waste his efforts in attempting to hang on to them. Another is for the Church to become really catholic by dropping it is Latin focus, and accept that it's the church of many cultures around the planet, not simply of those Italians. Dwyer also seeks an overall modernization of the conduct of Church decision-making and business, such as a more democratic and open process, and one that seeks input from all concerned parties and arrives in its decrees more by consensus than by fiat. In his descriptions of each of the Popes he covers in this history, they're judged on how well or poorly they succeed in working towards these aims for the increase and improvement of the Church from both centuries resulting in our time. On the eve of the French Revolution, "that the Papal States had become an obstacle to the independence and universality of the papacy, but the Popes of the time proved utterly unaware of this". The problem of using the Papal States was that they involved the Popes "incessantly in inner Italian political squabbles" and made their connection to the Catholic forces...