The Second Vatican Council Opened Forty-Eight Years Ago Today: On 11 October 1962
Joseph Ratzinger-become-pope wants to forget Vatican II.
His Rome wants to reform the reform and pretend Vatican II never existed.
We will not forget Vatican II and the message of its life-giving theology:
The Church is the People of God — a community of men and women united in faith. The male-dominated clerical superstructre is simply an administrative body. It exists to be of service to the People of God and not to dominate and control through intimidation, denigration, and condemnation.
Humanity and the human condition progress through time. Cultural understandings and the ways in which we think and express ourselves change. The signs of the times deserve in depth reflection and concrete action rooted in that reflection. Yesterday’s understanding of the human condition is not necessarily today’s and will probabaly not be tomorrow’s.
Church teaching, like all theology, is time-bound. Yesterday’s expressions are not necessarily best suited to today’s understandings and language. Healthy theology dares to ask questions and dares to formulate answers that echo the tradition and resonate with the experiences of contemporary believers.
Today’s ecclesiastical leadership has willfully imprisoned itself in a nineteenth century time warp. Pope John XXIII smiled at the world and opened the windows. Pope Benedict turns up his nose, slams the windows shut and nails them closed with ornate medieval nails.
Nevertheless, the theological challenge remains:
How do we speak today about our experiences of the Divine? Who is God for contemporary believers?
Two thousand years after he walked the earth, who is Jesus of Nazareth, raised from the dead, whom we proclaim Lord and Christ?
And what does it mean to be a human person? And how do we develop and live a system of values that respects that humanity in all its cultural, historic, religious, ethnic, sexual and gender varieties.
PS………..How did the Pope celebrate the anniversary of Vatican II?
He brought back the papal tiara and re-worked his papal coat of arms………This past Sunday a new banner appeared in front of Pope Benedict’s study window for the noonday recitation of the Angelus. Gone is the bishop’s mitre — originally part of his papal coat arms. The papal tiara has been returned…