Archive for category Vatican II
In came Latin, incense and burned books, out went half the parishioners / National Catholic Reporter
‘The Charlotte Diocese is not alone. While Pope Francis preaches an accompaniment for all spiritual seekers and castigates clericalism … seminaries in the U.S. continue to graduate priests for ordination who look not to Francis, but to Pope John Paul II for inspiration. It is a quiet, awkward and uneasy kind of schism in church practice and discipline.”National Catholic Reporter
“Religion scholar Maria Lichtmann felt a strangeness overcome St. Elizabeth of the Hill Country Parish in Boone, North Carolina, four years ago.
“Fr. Matthew Codd, the then-pastor at St. Elizabeth’s, was joined by a group of seminarians who went through the church’s theology library and removed books deemed heretical, including those of spiritual writers Henri Nouwen and Thomas Merton. The books were later burned, she was told by a parish staff member.
“Lichtmann, a retired religious studies professor at Appalachian State University, left the region in part, she told NCR, because of the changes in the parish. She now lives in Georgia.
“‘I felt it was a lost cause,’ she said about St. Elizabeth’s.
“The spirit of hyper-orthodoxy in parish leadership continued, noted Lichtmann, after Codd was replaced in July 2019 by Fr. Brendan Buckler.
“Nearing 18 months since Buckler arrived, on the edge of Boone, a college town and popular retirement community in the mountain foothills, a few dozen now gather every other Sunday at a car restoration shop shared by a hospitable non-Catholic, the husband of a parishioner.”
I earned my Bachelor of Arts degree from Loyola Marymount University between 1981-1985. I often think fondly of the priests and nuns there — with whom I was a doting student, and with a few became friends — but the memories of most of them are bittersweet.
“My LMU years happened to fall almost exactly 20 years after the three-year span of Vatican II, from 1962-1965. The male and female clergy at LMU who were over 40, as most were, had been fresh, idealistic novices during Vatican II. Without exception, they were all deeply affected both by that brief period of optimism and upheaval, as well as the aftermath of the recoil as those institutional doors snapped back shut.”
By Amy Morris-Young, National Catholic Reporter — Click here or on the title above to read the rest of this commentary.
Pope Francis told a group of Dutch bishops this week that the Vatican must continue reforms undertaken by the Catholic church in the 1960s and ’70s, according to one of the participants in the meeting. Bishop Jan Hendricks, who attended the meeting Monday (Dec. 2), later recounted that the pope said implementation of the 1962-65 Second Vatican Council is only half complete … The Dutch visit is one of the first for Francis, who has so far received visits only from bishops from several of the regions that make up the Italian episcopal conference.” By Joshua J. McElwee, National Catholic Reporter — Click here to read the rest of McElwee’s interview.
I already hear concerns that the reformist church of 76-year-old Pope Francis might not survive his pontificate. I hear talk that the anti-reformists who took back the Second Vatican Council will likely do it again once Francis is gone from the scene.
“We ask: Will a church groomed by compassion and mercy, as Francis would have it, be the church of our future? Will our church be guided, as if with a compass, by the lives and needs of marginalized people? Can a pastoral Catholicism, embedded in the Beatitudes, be the Catholicism we offer the world?
“Viewed solely as a moment in church history, the Francis moment might not last. Post-Vatican II history teaches us that entrenched forces have ways of enduring. In this view, Francis could be a passing fancy. However, from the long view of history, the Francis pontificate could well be the exclamation point on Vatican II — change and reform is the default mode of operation, not a one-time activity.” By Thomas C. Fox, National Catholic Reporter
Read the rest of Fox’s column by clicking here.
The Ecclesiology of Vatican Council II and the Synod: Central Themes of the Council of Cardinals / Vatican Information Service
In a press conference held in the Holy See Press Office this morning, director Fr. Federico Lombardi, S.J., gave information on the meeting of the Council of Cardinals, taking place in the Vatican from 1 to 3 October.” Vatican City, 2 October 2013 (VIS)
And from Associated Press via The Boston Globe — “Pope, Top Advisors Discuss Revamping Vatican Offices: Francis Pledges Church that Reaches Outcasts”
In the last 50 years, we have had five popes. The first four were at the Second Vatican Council as either bishops or peritus (theological advisers). Francis may not be a pope from the council, but he is quickly establishing himself as a pope of the council. Each of his recent predecessors, to be sure, carried forward particular elements of the council’s teaching. This pope, however, has received the council’s teaching through his distinctive experiences as a Jesuit, a Latin American and, pre-eminently, as pastor. His pontificate represents a fresh new phase in the ongoing reception of Vatican II, one shaped by a variety of post-conciliar developments.” By Richard Gaillardetz, Joseph Professor of Catholic Systematic Theology, Boston College, in National Catholic Reporter
Read the rest of Prof. Gaillardetz’s article by clicking here.
This is the third in a series of articles in National Catholic Reporter that examine the ramifications of the interview Pope Francis gave to America magazine that was released Sept. 19. The first two articles are “It Will Be Hard to Go Back after Francis’ Papacy” and “The Real Test of Francis’ Reform: Touching the Spiritually Poor.”
It was curiosity and a sense of irony that moved me to open the Oct. 1 issue of our diocesan newspaper. On the cover was the headline “Moving Forward in Faith” next to a picture of our former bishop vested as would be a prelate from more than 50 years ago. This was a photo from a liturgy in the “extraordinary form” (pre-Vatican II 1962 Latin Mass), welcoming a group of very traditional Carmelite nuns to the diocese … The people attached to the extraordinary form are seriously trying to enact a particular worldview and understanding of church. And it is an understanding that we left behind at the Second Vatican Council. It is a worldview that is incompatible with the council … The extraordinary form is incapable of activating us as the priestly people of God – the vision of Vatican II.” By Ron Schmit, Pastor, St. Anne Church, Byron, California, in National Catholic Reporter
The first session of the Second Vatican Council began 50 years ago last week, on Oct. 11, 1962. Vatican II was the largest Church council convened in its 2,000-year history and only the second to take place in St. Peter’s Basilica. What happened there is still being debated. News Media coverage of the anniversary has been extensive. Voice of the Faithful has compiled a representative sample of news stories commenting on the council that you may read by clicking here.
“The Second Vatican Council, which convened 50 years ago next month, has been described as the most momentous religious event of the 20th century. Meeting in four sessions over three years, the world’s Roman Catholic bishops sought to reimagine the role the church — the spiritual home of more than one-sixth of humanity — could play in a rapidly changing world. Yet Vatican II so dramatically failed to fulfill its promise that it registers very little in common memory today, even among Catholics whose faith it was meant to transform. Nevertheless, the changes it initiated were profound, and their current still runs below the surface of an uncertain church … Vatican II, from its half-forgotten place in the past, still points to an urgently needed Catholic renewal.” Commentary by James Carroll, The Boston Globe
What was the true spirit of Vatican II and has it been fulfilled?
Sean O’Conaill is a member of Voice of the Faithful in Ireland.