Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Vatican II

Earlier, I mentioned I had read the Catechism of the Catholic Church as part of this Year of Faith.  That was enormously helpful and educational.  Since then, I have been reading The Documents of Vatican II With Notes and Comments by Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox Authorities.  It has also been very rewarding, even though I'm only a bit of the way through.

Vatican II has always been a bit of a puzzle to me.  Obviously I was not alive at the time, so everything I've heard has been filtered by others.  While that is true of most anything, people have had incredibly different viewpoints on this council.  Many of the people I've spoken to seem to think that it was a great modernization and liberalization of the church.  Some are happy and some are unhappy about that.

As I've researched it on my own, I've discovered that much of what I've heard has been exaggerated.  The Council documents don't seem to make sweeping changes to the dogma of the Church, at least when I read them.  Maybe I'm not smart enough?

It would appear that some people have taken various ideas and statements out of context or taken them too far away from what was probably intended.  I've read that elsewhere.  It doesn't surprise me.  We do that all the time!

So, long story short, if you have been afraid to study Vatican II, concerned over what you might find, don't be.  It is part of our history and you can only help yourself and your understanding by reading the documents.  I got this book because the reviewers accused it of being super liberal or super conservative, which were major complaints in some of the other versions.

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