This essay applies recent scholarly insights on disillusionment as a cultural and psychological phenomenon to the problem of religious disillusionment as experienced by US Catholics in the wake of scandals of clergy sexual abuse. First, it sets forth disillusionment as a category for exploring the theological issue of sinfulness in the church. Second, it considers examples of how Vatican documents and acts of reconciliation in the last decade have been careful to draw distinctions between the faults of individual Christians and the holiness of the Church itself. Third, it presents Augustine as one for whom significant disillusionment, even with the Church, became an avenue for embracing the cross in the broadest ecclesiological context.