Thursday, September 3, 2020


My most astute comments first:

It is foolhardy or at least naive to think the Magisterium of the Catholic Church, meaning the living Magisterium of the living pope and bishops will ever ditch Vatican II. There has to be a realistic way for them to move forward since the living magisterium  are the ones who call the shots. 

My opinion on the best direction was the direction that Pope Benedict was creating and I think after the current papacy, much of Pope Benedict’s theological body of work will take root. He desired a hermeneutic of continuity not rupture in deciphering the Council.  He preferred renewal or reform within continuity.

I Agree with the second more scholarly article rather than the first opinionated one as the best way to approach the need for reform in today’s Church, much of it caused by a hermeneutics of rupture which can be attributed to the Council Fathers and those who implemented the council, which were the Council Fathers. Rupture or continuity is the question and in the long run, I think Pope Benedict’s position will take root and flower:

How I Went from a Defender of Vatican II to Its Critic
I entered the Catholic Church in 1993, during the height of the Pope John Paul II papacy. Just a few months after I was received into the Church, I attended World Youth Day in Denver, along with a million other enthusiastic young Catholics. So it should be no surprise that I was unabashedly a “JPII Catholic,” which meant, among other things, that I was a happy defender of Vatican II, while being a critic of what I perceived as its bad implementation. Then in the 2000’s I supported Pope Benedict’s “Reform of the Reform”—his call to rethink, but not cast away, the reforms that came out of Vatican II (i.e., its implementation). No matter how critical I might have been of what happened in the Church following the Council, I was nevertheless an ardent defender of Vatican II.

A Deeper Context: Overlooked book provides insight into Vatican II debates

Why I think there is no better book to help put the Council in context than Robert Royal’s tour-de-force A Deeper Vision: The Catholic Intellectual Tradition in the Twentieth Century.

(Image: Isiah Gibson/

In the first year of his pontificate, Pope Benedict XVI famously recalled the Second Vatican Council, which had ended 40 years previously. Benedict, with the steely-eyed realism that has marked his whole life, posed hard and honest questions, among them, “Why has the implementation of the Council, in large parts of the Church, thus far been so difficult?”

1 comment:

Tom Marcus said...

Giving all possible respect to your position Father, I just don't see it. There is a popular picture circulating on the internet about this "hermeneutic of continuity" and it shows a detailed, realistic painting of a horse on one half, coupled with a line drawing of a horse on the other. It illustrates the dilemma. As much as we all WANT to see this postconciliar liturgy and sacraments as a continuation--it's just not there. There is too much ambiguity in some of the VII docs and a couple of cases of outright contradiction. I'm wary of applying "living" to the magisterium of the Church. I am sure you mean that it must grow organically, but I fear too many others take "living" as "adaptability" or "evolutionary", meaning we can reverse or change course. We cannot. Especially in today's world. We've tried the New Coke. It's still a flop.