In the aftermath of the French Revolution, the Roman Catholic Church perceived a growing crisis of civilization wrought by secularism, rationalism, and liberalism. In response, the church sought to reassert its authority. John Henry Newman mounted a defense of the integrity of the tradition through his controversial but influential theory of doctrinal development. Vatican I defined papal infallibility so strongly that it seemed a council to end all councils. This discussion will evaluate these developments and their tensions, and show how a Reformed Catholic approach to the tradition is better positioned to provide authoritative wisdom for our time.