Today in the Netherlands:
- From Catholic World News: "Amsterdam, Aug. 14, 2007 (CWNews.com) - A Dutch Catholic bishop has suggested that Christians should refer to God as "Allah" to promote better relations with Muslims."
From AD2000:"During the 1950s, the Netherlands possessed a higher ratio of priests and religious to Catholic population than any other European country. Its Sunday Mass attendance rate was among the highest in the world at the time of the Council; as late as 1967, the figure was still 63 per cent, including 84 per cent in rural areas. The Dutch Church's missionary activity before Vatican II was unequalled in the world: with two per cent of the world's Catholics, it provided 11 per cent of it missionary priests. Yet within scarcely ten to fifteen years there was almost complete collapse. For example, between 1960 and 1977, ordinations to the priesthood fell from 318 to 16, a far worse drop than in neighbouring Belgium and West Germany. Mass attendance fell to less than 20 per cent of the pre-Vatican II high of 70-75 per cent; again a much worse decline than elsewhere. At the same time, 4300 nuns and brothers left religious life and over 2000 secular priest defected or were laicised: this was three time the world average. By the 1980s, the Church in Holland was in a condition of de facto schism. The Papacy and the Vatican were viewed with undisguised hostility or disdain by a big proportion of nominal Catholics while Catholic doctrines and teachings were widely rejected."