Vatican II- Please Critique Me

Could you critique my current understanding of Vatican II?

It was NOT and infallible unless it was reiterating previous infallible teachings. This is the impression given by the Theological note of the council. The majority of the pronouncements were pastoral in nature and they were completely contradictory to the decrees of previous popes, especially Blessed Pius IX as was said by then Cardinal Ratzinger.

“If it is desirable to offer a diagnosis of the text [Gaudium et Spes] as a whole, we might say that (in conjunction with the texts on religious liberty and world religions) it is a revision of the Syllabus of Pius IX, a kind of countersyllabus. …] Let us be content to say that the text serves as a countersyllabus and, as such, represents, on the part of the Church, an attempt at an official reconciliation with the new era inaugurated in 1789.” (Principles of Catholic Theology, 1987, pp. 381-2, Ignatius Press 1987)

Since this is an obvious change and is not subject to continuity Catholics can have reservations and even work to have these pastoral decrees changed, so long as they respect the RIGHT and the AUTHORITY of the Church to implement pastoral changes. Catholics must follow the wishes of their prelates with obedience. Behavior like that of Archbishop Marcel Levebvre which incurred de jure excommunication is not acceptable. Obedience is the only way to ensure that one remains a loyal son of the Catholic Church. Obedience is necessary, but outside of Faith and Morals agreement is not necessary.

Mirari Vos seems incompatible with the Vatican II and idea that the Church requires renewal. Testem Benevolentiae Nostra and Quas Primas appear to me to be irreconcilable with the post-conciliar view of government. Neither does Unam Sanctam seem compatible with the post-conciliar idea of ecumenism. The same goes for Mediator Dei and the way the Pauline Rite Mass is usually celebrated. I don’t understand how these pre-conciliar and post-conciliar documents and practices can be reconciled. They seem to be utterly opposed.

Yes, Pope John Paul II, who was unquestionably holy and pious, accepted the Council and quoted it often, but I seriously doubt that Blessed Pius IX would have done so. Is this understanding of the council okay to hold or is it schismatic?

[quote=Frank Roman]Could you critique my current understanding of Vatican II?

It was NOT and infallible unless it was reiterating previous infallible teachings. This is the impression given by the Theological note of the council. The majority of the pronouncements were pastoral in nature and they were completely contradictory to the decrees of previous popes, especially Blessed Pius IX as was said by then Cardinal Ratzinger.

“If it is desirable to offer a diagnosis of the text [Gaudium et Spes] as a whole, we might say that (in conjunction with the texts on religious liberty and world religions) it is a revision of the Syllabus of Pius IX, a kind of countersyllabus. …] Let us be content to say that the text serves as a countersyllabus and, as such, represents, on the part of the Church, an attempt at an official reconciliation with the new era inaugurated in 1789.” (Principles of Catholic Theology, 1987, pp. 381-2, Ignatius Press 1987)

Since this is an obvious change and is not subject to continuity Catholics can have reservations and even work to have these pastoral decrees changed, so long as they respect the RIGHT and the AUTHORITY of the Church to implement pastoral changes. Catholics must follow the wishes of their prelates with obedience. Behavior like that of Archbishop Marcel Levebvre which incurred de jure excommunication is not acceptable. Obedience is the only way to ensure that one remains a loyal son of the Catholic Church. Obedience is necessary, but outside of Faith and Morals agreement is not necessary.

Mirari Vos seems incompatible with the Vatican II and idea that the Church requires renewal. Testem Benevolentiae Nostra and Quas Primas appear to me to be irreconcilable with the post-conciliar view of government. Neither does Unam Sanctam seem compatible with the post-conciliar idea of ecumenism. The same goes for Mediator Dei and the way the Pauline Rite Mass is usually celebrated. I don’t understand how these pre-conciliar and post-conciliar documents and practices can be reconciled. They seem to be utterly opposed.

Yes, Pope John Paul II, who was unquestionably holy and pious, accepted the Council and quoted it often, but I seriously doubt that Blessed Pius IX would have done so. Is this understanding of the council okay to hold or is it schismatic?

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We have a very learned forum member, ItsjustDave. You could PM him with this and he would give it an exhaustive treatment.

It is boarderline schismatic, and seems to show a certain misunderstanding of Catholic teaching as a whole. Vatican II did not contradict any prior teachings, and the quote that you gave from Caardinal Ratzinger does not say that it does. None of the things that you mentioned are contradictory to past teachings. If they were, this would be a major problem, because Vatican II was an ecumenical council approved by the Pope. If it did teach anything that contradicted the past, then the entire notion that the Catholic Church is an infallible institution goes right out the window.

Read this and its second part here.

Also, read Ratzinger’s quotation:

It must be stated that Vatican II is upheld by the same authority as Vatican I and the Council of Trent, namely, the Pope and the College of Bishops in communion with him, and that also with regard to its contents, Vatican II is in the strictest continuity with both previous councils and incorporates their texts word for word in decisive points . . .

Whoever accepts Vatican II, as it has clearly expressed and understood itself, at the same time accepts the whole binding tradition of the Catholic Church, particularly also the two previous councils . . . It is likewise impossible to decide in favor of Trent and Vatican I but against Vatican II. Whoever denies Vatican II denies the authority that upholds the other two councils and thereby detaches them from their foundation. And this applies to the so-called ‘traditionalism,’ also in its extreme forms. Every partisan choice destroys the whole (the very history of the Church) which can exist only as an indivisible unity.

To defend the true tradition of the Church today means to defend the Council. It is our fault if we have at times provided a pretext (to the ‘right’ and ‘left’ alike) to view Vatican II as a ‘break’ and an abandonment of the tradition. There is, instead, a continuity that allows neither a return to the past nor a flight forward, neither anachronistic longings nor unjustified impatience. We must remain faithful to the today of the Church, not the yesterday or tomorrow. And this today of the Church is the documents of Vatican II, without reservations that amputate them and without arbitrariness that distorts them . . .

I see no future for a position that, out of principle, stubbornly renounces Vatican II. In fact in itself it is an illogical position. The point of departure for this tendency is, in fact, the strictest fidelity to the teaching particularly of Pius IX and Pius X and, still more fundamentally, of Vatican I and its definition of papal primacy. But why only popes up to Pius XII and not beyond? Is perhaps obedience to the Holy See divisible according to years or according to the nearness of a teaching to one’s own already-established convictions?

  • The Ratzinger Report, San Francisco: Ignatius, 1985, 28-29, 31

In a very short form, this is not quite right. Vatican II’s teachings are infallible but there were no new infallible pronouncements.

As teachings of an Ecumenical Council, the documents of Vatican II are materially infallible, even if not formally so.

[quote=Lazerlike42]It is boarderline schismatic, and seems to show a certain misunderstanding of Catholic teaching as a whole. Vatican II did not contradict any prior teachings

With all due respect; I disagree with you emphatically. Please allow me to state my position.

First question; have you read all the Councils, THEN Vatican II? If you have (which is apparent you have not) you would see indeed that “Vatican II DID and DOES contradict prior teachings”

The Pope who summoned the Council and the pope who promulgated its decrees made it clear that Vatican II was a pastoral, not a dogmatic Council. Catholics are, therefore, within their rights to make reservations regarding any novelties emanating from Vatican II that are out of step with Sacred Tradition and the previous continuous Magisterium of the Church.

Pope John XXIII, who convoked the council had no intention of it being an infallible and so he stated that "there will be no infallible definitions. All that was done by former Councils. That is enough. --Pope John XXIII

It must not be mistaken that since the council was attended and called by the Pope that it would automatically be lead by the Holy Ghost as to call a council is a practical decision of the pope. A person may piously believe that God inspired it. But no one can say that this is an object of faith.

Vatican I (a dogmatic council, which Vatican II was not) makes it very clear that the pope is SUBSERVIENT to the Deposit of Faith. Pope John XXIII and Pope Paul VI explicitly chose to withhold dogmatic authority from Vatican II. Therefore, whatever it did or however it is interpreted, it has none of the weight of the dogmatic Council of Trent and Vatican I.

“The Church united in councils, even general councils, has sometimes been mistaken” (Dictionaire de Theologie Catholique). The teaching of the Council of Florence on the matter and form for the Sacrament of Holy Orders (Sessio VIII, November 22, 1439) was set aside by Pope Pius XII in his Apostolic Constitution “Sacramentum Ordinis” (1947).

There is the example of the illegal Council of Pistoia, which was held in September of 1786 by the Bishop of Pistoia and Prato, in a daring effort to secure the errors of Jansenism. The Council attempted to spread errors by emphasising the notion of “Community”, by giving bishops more authority much like Vatican II did by the proclamation of collegiality of bishops, and many other errors of the illegal Council of Pistoia. This council was condemned and eighty-five of its propositions were stigmatized as erroneous and dangerous.

Pius VI on 28 August, 1794, dealt the death-blow to the influence of the council in his Bull "Auctorem Fidei:

“[To contend that] ways must be prepared for people to unite their voices with that of the whole Church – if this be understood to signify the introduction of the use of the vernacular language into the liturgical prayers – is condemned as false, rash, disturbing to the order prescribed for the celebration of the sacred mysteries, easily productive of many evils.”

Thus we can see that not only is it clearly possible that Vatican II and it’s outcome may be later be annulled but also that many of the false innovation that were introduced or brought about as a result of this council have already been clearly condemned by the Church.

In fact, Paul VI, who promulgated the documents of the Council in 1965, like his predecessor began to reject the fruits of that Council. He issued two startling statements to that effect.

“The Church finds herself in an hour of anxiety, a disturbed period of self-criticism, or what would even better be called self-demolition [auto-destruction]. It is an interior upheaval, acute and complicated, which nobody expected after the Council…”(edited out for brevity) Pope Paul VI, December 7, 1968, Address to the Lombard Seminary at Rome

"We have the impression that through some cracks in the wall the smoke of Satan has entered the temple of God: it is doubt, uncertainty, questioning, dissatisfaction, confrontation… What dawned, instead, was a day of clouds and storms, of darkness, of searching and uncertainties. – Pope Paul VI, June 29, 1972

Vatican II, therefore, as a pastoral council, has no dogmatic force and can be held to be imprudent or even in error, with no compromise to one’s Catholic faith.

Further, as an aside; as a convert to the Catholic faith I am appalled at those who blindly follow those in error. Beware of the clergy; for they are the first to apostasize. It truly is a perfect example of the blind leading the blind. What better way for Satan to create confusion and discord among Catholics than to wedge this puny Council between the faithful? What better way to lead souls to hell under the auspice of “Obedience” without understanding that the Authority is owed to Christ FIRST. Always.
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Nowhere does Vatican II contradict prior teachings in matters of faith and morals. Even the SSPX does not contend that it does. If you believe that it does, you simply are not reading it properly, and possibly the other councils as well. You have the burden of proof to show that Vatican II contradicted prior teachings. A word of caution: very, very often when people try to do this, they can be shown to be misinterpreting prior councils by looking at documents which came out at the time of the prior councils.

The Pope who summoned the Council and the pope who promulgated its decrees made it clear that Vatican II was a pastoral, not a dogmatic Council. Catholics are, therefore, within their rights to make reservations regarding any novelties emanating from Vatican II that are out of step with Sacred Tradition and the previous continuous Magisterium of the Church.

Pope John XXIII, who convoked the council had no intention of it being an infallible and so he stated that "there will be no infallible definitions. All that was done by former Councils. That is enough. --Pope John XXIII.

A council does not need to define new dogmas to be infallible. This position cannot be backed up via Magisterial statements.

It must not be mistaken that since the council was attended and called by the Pope that it would automatically be lead by the Holy Ghost as to call a council is a practical decision of the pope. A person may piously believe that God inspired it. But no one can say that this is an object of faith.

You assert this but provide no proof. Where do you take this belief that an ecumenical council can not be led by the Holy Spirit?

Vatican I (a dogmatic council, which Vatican II was not) makes it very clear that the pope is SUBSERVIENT to the Deposit of Faith. Pope John XXIII and Pope Paul VI explicitly chose to withhold dogmatic authority from Vatican II. Therefore, whatever it did or however it is interpreted, it has none of the weight of the dogmatic Council of Trent and Vatican I.

“The Church united in councils, even general councils, has sometimes been mistaken” (Dictionaire de Theologie Catholique). The teaching of the Council of Florence on the matter and form for the Sacrament of Holy Orders (Sessio VIII, November 22, 1439) was set aside by Pope Pius XII in his Apostolic Constitution “Sacramentum Ordinis” (1947).

There is the example of the illegal Council of Pistoia, which was held in September of 1786 by the Bishop of Pistoia and Prato, in a daring effort to secure the errors of Jansenism. The Council attempted to spread errors by emphasising the notion of “Community”, by giving bishops more authority much like Vatican II did by the proclamation of collegiality of bishops, and many other errors of the illegal Council of Pistoia. This council was condemned and eighty-five of its propositions were stigmatized as erroneous and dangerous.

Pius VI on 28 August, 1794, dealt the death-blow to the influence of the council in his Bull "Auctorem Fidei:

“[To contend that] ways must be prepared for people to unite their voices with that of the whole Church – if this be understood to signify the introduction of the use of the vernacular language into the liturgical prayers – is condemned as false, rash, disturbing to the order prescribed for the celebration of the sacred mysteries, easily productive of many evils.”

I will research these and get back to you, however I am more than confident that they have been used to attack Vatican II before. Although, on the face of it I can say that the illegal council was not ecumenical and therefore has no bearing on the matter. What’s more, I believe that Pius’ Papl Bull was written to those involved with that council. In other words, it was not infallible and even in its fallibility was not applicable to the entire Church.
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I never said that Vatican II and previous teachings contradicted in matters of faith and morals, I just said that pastorally- it was contradictory to the decrees of previous popes.

Is this not contradictory to Vatican II?

MORTALIUM ANIMOS
ON RELIGIOUS UNITY

ENCYCLICAL OF POPE PIUS XI JANUARY 6, 1928

A similar object is aimed at by some, in those matters which concern the New Law promulgated by Christ our Lord. For since they hold it for certain that men destitute of all religious sense are very rarely to be found, they seem to have founded on that belief a hope that the nations, although they differ among themselves in certain religious matters, will without much difficulty come to agree as brethren in professing certain doctrines, which form as it were a common basis of the spiritual life. For which reason conventions, meetings and addresses are frequently arranged by these persons, at which a large number of listeners are present, and at which all without distinction are invited to join in the discussion, both infidels of every kind, and Christians, even those who have unhappily fallen away from Christ or who with obstinacy and pertinacity deny His divine nature and mission. Certainly such attempts can nowise be approved by Catholics, founded as they are on that false opinion which considers all religions to be more or less good and praiseworthy, since they all in different ways manifest and signify that sense which is inborn in us all, and by which we are led to God and to the obedient acknowledgment of His rule. Not only are those who hold this opinion in error and deceived, but also in distorting the idea of true religion they reject it, and little by little, turn aside to naturalism and atheism, as it is called; from which it clearly follows that one who supports those who hold these theories and attempt to realize them, is altogether abandoning the divinely revealed religion.
… But in reality beneath these enticing words and blandishments lies hid a most grave error, by which the foundations of the Catholic faith are completely destroyed.
7. And here it seems opportune to expound and to refute a certain false opinion, on which this whole question, as well as that complex movement by which non-Catholics seek to bring about the union of the Christian churches depends. For they are of the opinion that the unity of faith and government, which is a note of the one true Church of Christ, has hardly up to the present time existed, and does not to-day exist. They consider that this unity may indeed be desired and that it may even be one day attained through the instrumentality of wills directed to a common end, but that meanwhile it can only be regarded as mere ideal. They add that the Church in itself, or of its nature, is divided into sections; that is to say, that it is made up of several churches or distinct communities, which still remain separate, and although having certain articles of doctrine in common, nevertheless disagree concerning the remainder; that these all enjoy the same rights; and that the Church was one and unique from, at the most, the apostolic age until the first Ecumenical Councils.
… Others again, even go so far as to wish the Pontiff Himself to preside over their motley, so to say, assemblies.

  1. This being so, it is clear that the Apostolic See cannot on any terms take part in their assemblies, nor is it anyway lawful for Catholics either to support or to work for such enterprises; for if they do so they will be giving countenance to a false Christianity, quite alien to the one Church of Christ. Shall We suffer, what would indeed be iniquitous, the truth, and a truth divinely revealed, to be made a subject for compromise? For here there is question of defending revealed truth.

…If this were true, we should have to confess that the coming of the Holy Ghost on the Apostles, and the perpetual indwelling of the same Spirit in the Church, and the very preaching of Jesus Christ, have several centuries ago, lost all their efficacy and use, to affirm which would be blasphemy.

  1. So, Venerable Brethren, it is clear why this Apostolic See has never allowed its subjects to take part in the assemblies of non-Catholics: for the union of Christians can only be promoted by promoting the return to the one true Church of Christ of those who are separated from it, for in the past they have unhappily left it. To the one true Church of Christ, we say, which is visible to all, and which is to remain, according to the will of its Author, exactly the same as He instituted it. During the lapse of centuries, the mystical Spouse of Christ has never been contaminated, nor can she ever in the future be contaminated, as Cyprian bears witness: “The Bride of Christ cannot be made false to her Spouse: she is incorrupt and modest. She knows but one dwelling, she guards the sanctity of the nuptial chamber chastely and modestly.”…

Thus we can see that not only is it clearly possible that Vatican II and it’s outcome may be later be annulled but also that many of the false innovation that were introduced or brought about as a result of this council have already been clearly condemned by the Church.

In fact, Paul VI, who promulgated the documents of the Council in 1965, like his predecessor began to reject the fruits of that Council. He issued two startling statements to that effect.

“The Church finds herself in an hour of anxiety, a disturbed period of self-criticism, or what would even better be called self-demolition [auto-destruction]. It is an interior upheaval, acute and complicated, which nobody expected after the Council…”(edited out for brevity) Pope Paul VI, December 7, 1968, Address to the Lombard Seminary at Rome

"We have the impression that through some cracks in the wall the smoke of Satan has entered the temple of God: it is doubt, uncertainty, questioning, dissatisfaction, confrontation… What dawned, instead, was a day of clouds and storms, of darkness, of searching and uncertainties. – Pope Paul VI, June 29, 1972

The belief that any ecumenical council can be annulled is heretical. What’s more, these quotes of Paul VI are entirely out of context. He was quite right in asserting that difficult times came upon the Church. The misuse of Vatican II was rampant, there is no doubt of that. However, history is filled with moments in which the same statements could have been written. The Church has always gone through periods of difficulty.

Vatican II, therefore, as a pastoral council, has no dogmatic force and can be held to be imprudent or even in error, with no compromise to one’s Catholic faith.

Anyone who holds Vatican II to be in error is materially schismatic. Even the SSPX, which is in schism, believes this. The fact that the council was called Pastoral has no impact whatsoever on the authority. It is still a Magisterial teaching which must be given assent.

Further, as an aside; as a convert to the Catholic faith I am appalled at those who blindly follow those in error. Beware of the clergy; for they are the first to apostasize. It truly is a perfect example of the blind leading the blind. What better way for Satan to create confusion and discord among Catholics than to wedge this puny Council between the faithful? What better way to lead souls to hell under the auspice of “Obedience” without understanding that the Authority is owed to Christ FIRST. Always.

Ma’am, I suggest you do a lot of reading. Start with the two links I provided. This is very important. Your soul is in danger here.

[quote=Frank Roman]Is this not contradictory to Vatican II?

MORTALIUM ANIMOS
ON RELIGIOUS UNITY

ENCYCLICAL OF POPE PIUS XI JANUARY 6, 1928

A similar object is aimed at by some, in those matters which concern the New Law promulgated by Christ our Lord. For since they hold it for certain that men destitute of all religious sense are very rarely to be found, they seem to have founded on that belief a hope that the nations, although they differ among themselves in certain religious matters, will without much difficulty come to agree as brethren in professing certain doctrines, which form as it were a common basis of the spiritual life. For which reason conventions, meetings and addresses are frequently arranged by these persons, at which a large number of listeners are present, and at which all without distinction are invited to join in the discussion, both infidels of every kind, and Christians, even those who have unhappily fallen away from Christ or who with obstinacy and pertinacity deny His divine nature and mission. Certainly such attempts can nowise be approved by Catholics, founded as they are on that false opinion which considers all religions to be more or less good and praiseworthy, since they all in different ways manifest and signify that sense which is inborn in us all, and by which we are led to God and to the obedient acknowledgment of His rule. Not only are those who hold this opinion in error and deceived, but also in distorting the idea of true religion they reject it, and little by little, turn aside to naturalism and atheism, as it is called; from which it clearly follows that one who supports those who hold these theories and attempt to realize them, is altogether abandoning the divinely revealed religion.
… But in reality beneath these enticing words and blandishments lies hid a most grave error, by which the foundations of the Catholic faith are completely destroyed.
7. And here it seems opportune to expound and to refute a certain false opinion, on which this whole question, as well as that complex movement by which non-Catholics seek to bring about the union of the Christian churches depends. For they are of the opinion that the unity of faith and government, which is a note of the one true Church of Christ, has hardly up to the present time existed, and does not to-day exist. They consider that this unity may indeed be desired and that it may even be one day attained through the instrumentality of wills directed to a common end, but that meanwhile it can only be regarded as mere ideal. They add that the Church in itself, or of its nature, is divided into sections; that is to say, that it is made up of several churches or distinct communities, which still remain separate, and although having certain articles of doctrine in common, nevertheless disagree concerning the remainder; that these all enjoy the same rights; and that the Church was one and unique from, at the most, the apostolic age until the first Ecumenical Councils.
… Others again, even go so far as to wish the Pontiff Himself to preside over their motley, so to say, assemblies.

  1. This being so, it is clear that the Apostolic See cannot on any terms take part in their assemblies, nor is it anyway lawful for Catholics either to support or to work for such enterprises; for if they do so they will be giving countenance to a false Christianity, quite alien to the one Church of Christ. Shall We suffer, what would indeed be iniquitous, the truth, and a truth divinely revealed, to be made a subject for compromise? For here there is question of defending revealed truth.

…If this were true, we should have to confess that the coming of the Holy Ghost on the Apostles, and the perpetual indwelling of the same Spirit in the Church, and the very preaching of Jesus Christ, have several centuries ago, lost all their efficacy and use, to affirm which would be blasphemy.

  1. So, Venerable Brethren, it is clear why this Apostolic See has never allowed its subjects to take part in the assemblies of non-Catholics: for the union of Christians can only be promoted by promoting the return to the one true Church of Christ of those who are separated from it, for in the past they have unhappily left it. To the one true Church of Christ, we say, which is visible to all, and which is to remain, according to the will of its Author, exactly the same as He instituted it. During the lapse of centuries, the mystical Spouse of Christ has never been contaminated, nor can she ever in the future be contaminated, as Cyprian bears witness: “The Bride of Christ cannot be made false to her Spouse: she is incorrupt and modest. She knows but one dwelling, she guards the sanctity of the nuptial chamber chastely and modestly.”…
    [/quote]

This does not pertain to doctrine. It pertains to discipline. Discipline can be changed at any time. What’s more, it is not infallible.

[quote=Lazerlike42]This does not pertain to doctrine. It pertains to discipline. Discipline can be changed at any time. What’s more, it is not infallible.
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Thats exactly my point! As a Catholic can I choose to agree with the pre-vaticanII understanding or must i support the Vatican II discipline?

I would have to say that the majority of Vatican II falls under that discipline/pastoral category- which makes sense since it was over and over again called a primarily pastoral council- just as MichellemyBelle pointed out. I seriously doubt that her soul is in danger!

[quote=Frank Roman]Thats exactly my point! As a Catholic can I choose to agree with the pre-vaticanII understanding or must i support the Vatican II discipline?

I would have to say that the majority of Vatican II falls under that discipline/pastoral category- which makes sense since it was over and over again called a primarily pastoral council- just as MichellemyBelle pointed out. I seriously doubt that her soul is in danger!
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But Frank, we are bound to assent to the discipline of the Church that is currently effective. We can no more ignore this discipline than can a priest ignore the discipline of Celibacy simply because there was a time when it was different. We are bound under penalty of sin to follow the disciplines currently in force. This is a teaching that has been around long before Vatican II. You can say that you preferred previous disciplines better, but you must give assent to those currently in force. When a person does not give assent to the current discipline of the Church, that person is in material schism.

I think it would be good to quote the answer given by Mr. Sungenis to the question from which Ms. Michelle plagerized:

I think the problem here is that people assume Vatican II was either a pastoral council or dogmatic council depending on their wish to attack the council or support the council, respectively. I don’t know anywhere that Vatican II or Paul VI said “Vatican II was a pastoral council” or “Vatican II was a dogmatic council.”

I think the simple solution to the issue is for everyone to recognize that, when Vatican II spoke about faith and morals it was infallible; otherwise, we sacrifice the Church’s indefectibility and impugn the protection of the Holy Spirit.

But this also means that, when Vatican II was not speaking about faith and morals and thus was merely giving its opinion on worldly matters or dispensing pastoral advice, then these instances are not infallible and may be found later to be imprudent and impractical for the Church. For example, when Gaudium et spes advises a one world government, such a position is merely Vatican II’s opinion, and it is not a matter of faith and morals.

The only problem with the above solution is that the respective sides want to be the ones to decide whether a particular statement of Vatican II concerned faith and morals or did not concern faith and morals, and I would say both sides need to be very cautious here. Only the magisterium can make that decision. I am thinking specifically here of Dignitatis Humanae, for it claims to be continuing the Church’s teaching of faith and morals, and it has been treated that way by the subsequent magisterium. I think Traditionalists need to accept DH and not categorize it merely as a “pastoral” concern. As such, I think Atila Sinke Guimaraes’ attack on DH is out of line, as was Michael Davies.

As for Atila’s argument that “In fact, it is canonically possible for a future pope to annul the outcome of the council,” that is an argument without any teeth, since its force assumes that there will be a pope to annul Vatican II. Atila knows that is about as plausible as us sending a man to Pluto.

Besides, the 449 Council of Ephesus is hardly a good example or even a precedent when compared to Vatican II. The 449 council was NOT an ecumenical council, in addition to the fact that there were so many miscues and improprities at the council, including personal vendettas, as well as the squelching and mishandling of the bishops votes and even the possibility that the record of the council was altered, that it was proper for the pope to dissolve it. But Vatican II was the 21 ecumenical council and it was the continuation of Vatican I, the 20th ecumenical council, and both were confirmed and approved by the reinging pope. We have no higher authority in the Church. Those who oppose it are just beating their heads against the wall, and I guarantee you it is not the wall that is going to be hurt.

I think what Atila and the other critics of Vatican II need to do is accept the council in matters of faith and morals and interpret its problem areas in line with Tradition. They need to take Vatican II away from the liberals and make their own council. Wouldn’t that be a switch?!

95% of Vatican II is unproblematic. The other 5% can be harmonized with Tradition, and the opinions and pastoral advice of Vatican II can be dealt with on a case-by-case basis. But it is very detrimental to the Church to throw the whole council out. And in all practicality, it ain’t goin to happen. Those who think Vatican II is going to be dismissed are living in a dream world, and they are uncessarily alienating themselves and many others from the Church. Vatican II needs to be a rallying point. The mustard needs to be thrown at the liberals who have decimated the council’s teachings. If we could get Traditionalists to start looking at Vatican II in a positive light and steal it from the liberals, things would happen, and the Spirit of God would move for us.

[quote=Lazerlike42]This does not pertain to doctrine. It pertains to discipline. Discipline can be changed at any time. What’s more, it is not infallible.
[/quote]

Actually, this isn’t quite true. Read the article on Ecclesiastical Discipline.
newadvent.org/cathen/05030a.htm

From the disciplinary infallibility of the Church, correctly understood as an indirect consequence of her doctrinal infallibility, it follows that she cannot be rightly accused of introducing into her discipline anything opposed to the Divine law;

Please read the whole article, not just this quote.

Of course we need to be obedient, I said that!

Ms. Michelle didn’t plagerize, she was quoting the Popes! Maybe CAI was her source, but people quote here all the time without always giving sources, cut the new member some slack.

[quote=Lazerlike42]I think it would be good to quote the answer given by Mr. Sungenis to the question from which Ms. Michelle plagerized:

Dear Lazerlike: it seems that you feel that the only way to get to the heart of the matter is to supposedly attack me personally. I did not plagerize. I, at my very best quoted sources. Alot of what is written is something that I know, from what sources no longer stick with me. At looking the the sea of all that is said since the time Christ was Resurrected and Ascended, that is what I am utilizing. I will be happy to respond to all that you have written. However, this isn’t a personal attack as that seems to be how CA forum responds to those in disagreement to their supposed views.

Blessings
MichellemyBelle

[quote=Frank Roman]Could you critique my current understanding of Vatican II?

[/quote]

I think that your understanding is a good one. However, I am going to take you to task on one minor issue that has not been addressed as of yet by another poster.

I don’t think that it is correct to use Archbishop Levbre as an example of a rejection of the Second Vatican Council. Recall that he voted in favor of all save one of the documents. Rather the concern of the late Archbishop was unrelated to Vatican II. His concern was that Modernism was as wide spread as Arienism was in its day. However, other than that minor nuance I would say that your understanding is in short good.

http://www.catholicintl.com/qa/2005/qa-oct-05.htm#Question%2082

Thank you for giving us Sun’genius’ opinion even though it used no official, declarative Church documents for support. I will attempt to be as brief as possible given my workload for the day. Besides, I just poured a glass of wine and lit some wonderful aromatic candles, and I’d rather enjoy these things…

Lazerlike states (via Sun’genius’):

1)I think the problem here is that people assume Vatican II was either a pastoral council or dogmatic council depending on their wish to attack the council or support the council, respectively.,
2) I think the simple solution to the issue is for everyone to recognize that, when Vatican II spoke about faith and morals it was infallible…

Lazerlike (and Sungenis) give no supporting statements supporting the (claim) that Vatican II was or was not a dogmatic council. That it was not and held zero protection against infallible statements, is clearly found in the mouths of two popes. As stated elsewhere,(my first post, which he did not read…) (Pope John XXIII, who convoked the council had no intention of it being an infallible and so he stated that "there will be no infallible definitions. (please read my first post for this…)

That V2 spoke about faith and morals is true, yet it did little, or nothing, to bind these to the faithful. It couldn’t because the Council did not bind the faithful to anything, and as such, requires no assent of faith on our part. In fact, the opposite effect was had. Many free-thinkers today want us to believe that the failures in the Church since it closed was the fault of the non-acceptance of its teachings. That’s funny. I never heard of any Bishop from around the world bemoaning the fact that the “dictates” of the Council are not being carried out. In fact, its “guiding spirit” is given great praise.

Lazerlike states:

  1. But Vatican II was the 21 ecumenical council and it was the continuation of Vatican I, the 20th ecumenical council, and both were confirmed and approved by the reinging pope.

My reply:
Huh? To claim that Vatican II enjoys the infallible protection granted at Vatican I is the greatest stretch of the imagination one could hope for. If this were the case, no pope, after the first Council, would ever have had to invoke the protection and guidance of the Holy Spirit. We could just “assume” God’s protection. I would grant that, had the same Bishops been in attendance at both Vatican I and II, your statement could have a more plausible reception for the more clear-thinking posters, but I think that highly unlikely.

Lazerlike states:
4)I think what Atila and the other critics of Vatican II need to do is accept the council in matters of faith and morals and interpret its problem areas in line with Tradition. They need to take Vatican II away from the liberals and make their own council. Wouldn’t that be a switch?! 95% of VII is unproblematic…

My reply:

This portion of the post is my personal favorite, as it is loaded with all kinds of speedy rationalism which is the last refuge of an unstable mind, and Sun’genuis’ demonstrates this aptly starting with, I think what Atila and the other critics. Now, here’s the big switch:

The Abby of Nantz did precisely what was suggested. On three occasions this Tradition-loving abbot asked none other than Ratzinger to simply ask the then reigning pope (JP2) to make a declaration from the Chair of Peter regarding the matter of the Vatican II documents. Here, it is well to note that any bishop has the right, and duty, to ask the pope for clarification when there is doubt and especially when the faith is at stake. Humbly, the good abbot asked Cardinal Ratzinger to ask this question of the pope. Ratzinger’s reply was “I lost the request”. After three attempts the abbot gave up knowing full well Ratzinger would not comply. Had he (Ratzinger) done so, the pope would have, indeed, been forced to state the truth. This couldn’t happen because the house of Novus Ordo cards would crash in on Novus Ordo heads, including yours, and what you would be faced with is the required consumption of a very large slice of humble, Novus Ordos pie.

If, as you claim, it would be detrimental to throw out Vatican II, and it will happen, then it is presupposed that there is something good about Vatican II and the documents that went forward from it. I simply ask you to demonstrate three (3) events that even the man-in-the-pew can recognize are the fruits of this Council. Again, please list three fruits of Vatican II.

Now, for Gaudium et spes

My reply:

For any of the faithful to believe that the revolt of Vatican II is harmful rather than good requires a decision be made regarding the actions surrounding Vatican II and the obvious fruits of the Vatican’s novel social program. All one needs to do is read the evidence and make a decision as to whether or not Vatican II and the teachings that flow from it reflect Catholic Doctrine. If they do, then follow them. If they don’t, then reject them. Let’s start with ecumenism.

The unity of the faith is the necessary foundation of the accord of wills and the agreement of Catholic actions. It then follows logically that if the hierarchy of the Church demands any type of Catholic unity that opposes the unity of the Roman Catholic faith; then it attacks the unity of the Church! If you don’t believe me then read Pope Leo XIII’s encyclical, “Testem benevolentiae”, 1899, which addressed this very issue.

Any commentary by posters here in the favor of Vatican II wastes ink. Pope Leo XIII notifies us that the type of ecumenism the American activist bishops used to reach those separated from the Church was a condemned ecumenical practice, because it attacks the purity of the faith and the unity of the Church. You see, Pope Leo was addressing the ecumenical approach used at that time by “questionable bishops”. The ecumenical approach these American bishops used at that time was to “keep quiet about certain points regarding doctrines” so as not to offend anyone instead of vigorously defending a revealed truth. In short, the ecumenical approach the Church always took was to demonstrate where, how, and why a particular belief system was in error. Never did the Roman Catholic Church attempt to “find a middle ground”, so not to offend anyone in the name of charity which, by the way, is a false charity. When one who is in error is given latitude to continue in their error; it is more charitable to state the truth. Period. Accept it of not.

The very ecumenical approach condemned by Leo XIII is the very same ecumenical approach adopted, professed, and promoted by Vatican II and Vatican II advocates. To continue on the disastrous, “irreversible” ecumenical path of Vatican II is liken to compromising the integrity and purity of the Roman Catholic faith, which John Paul II shows us perfectly well from the Assisi disaster. It tears apart the unity of the faith just as Leo XIII pointed out that it would. (Think about it: have things gotten better or worse since the Assisi debacle?)

Be careful not to commit the error of logic, “Post hoc, ergo propter hoc.” “After which, therefore on account of which.” Basically, this error assumes that what comes after was caused by what comes before. God is God and ever the same. If God approves something as good, such as the Traditional Roman Rite of the Sacred Liturgy in Latin, and this Rite has developed under the guidance of the Holy Ghost over centuries, then it would be impossible for God to approve of liturgical innovations which basically overthrew and condemned as “bad” what God and His Popes and Councils had approved as good. Therefore, the correct logical conclusion is that it was wrong to abandon the Traditional Roman Rite. If one further proves, as many able authors have done on the basis of traditional Catholic teaching, that the Novus Ordo is in some way bad, then one is further obliged not simply to (re-)embrace the Traditional Liturgy, but to abandon the Novus Ordo all together.

My ending comments

Regarding the Mass (since it is the heart of the Roman Catholic Church) The Mass was Doctrinally defined at Trent along with the canon of the Mass. Since this is a doctrine, it can not be changed by a future pope, and can not be further defined for greater understanding. This later portion came from Vatican I, session III, chapter IV. As posted above, Vatican II was strictly pastoral. John XXIII, Paul VI, and the General Secretary of Vatican II all stated as such.

Therefore, the Mass and its Canon can not change as given to us at Trent. Furthermore, Vatican I said that a “deeper meaning” for greater understanding can not be found for interpretation. We conclude that the Mass can not change, and any subsequent changes are defects against the constant teachings of the Catholic Church.

It is also interesting to note that, staying with this subject, the section of the canon, which contains the substance of the Mass, has been protected with encyclicals and bulls such as:

DeDefectibus, chapter V
Trent session XXIV, chapter VII
Trent session XXI, chapter II
Super quibusdam, Pope Clement IV
Ex quo non, Pope Saint Pius X
Sacramentum Ordinis, Pope Pius XII
Apostolicae Curae, Pope Leo XIII

Since these already define the Mass we further conclude, and rightfully so, that any statements or declarations made after an infallibly defining doctrine… are null and void.

Since the Church is not capable of an error, we must rest our case with the fact that the defects in the Mass today were from the human element enjoined with the Church. Therefore, we must believe that:

1)Those at Vatican II did not have a sufficient and great enough education to know what they were doing, and are, by default, incompetent leaders

2)Those at Vatican II are sufficiently educated, and made the Council changes against the Church’s Doctrines with malicious intentions.

Ahhh.now for another glass of wine…

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