Posts Tagged ‘Laity’

Verbum Domini

In 11 Joanna Bogle on 2013/10/17 at 12:00 AM

Been reading…

… Verbum Domini, the new Papal document on the importance of the Scriptures. It is, obviously, centred on the Scriptures themselves, and also on the Second Vatican Council’s important document, Dei Verbum. This interests me very much, because this, almost more than other documents of Vatican II, has been central to our studies at Maryvale.
Throughout the first half of my adult life, I was often told that the Second Vatican Council had produced nothing of real value, that it would one day be regarded as irrelevant, or that it had been a dreadful mistake. There had been so much post-conciliar muddle that it was easy to accepot this view (although I didn’t).
Wiser voices, which urged the reading and study of the Council’s documents, tended to be drowned out – but when you could hear them, they gave good advice and now we are beginning to see the Council’s true fruits. Chief among these has of course been the Catechism of the Catholic Church – another crucial reference-point in Maryvale studies. But we can also note a fresh approach – a logical one, given the development of the Church’s doctrine in this area – to religious freedom and to the relationships between Christianity and other faiths. And the message offered by Benedict XVI on his recent visit to Britain – which proved so attractive, and which won over so many who had thought they were going to haye him – was soaked in the Vatican II approach…John Henry Newman knew that the Church needed an educated laity: people who could give a good account of what the Church taught and why.
It is interesting to see the opportunities for achieving this increasing, not only through the New Movements in the Church with their programmes of study and action, but also through the various educational institutions, and indeed through the Internet. The women who asked for advice and help from Newman as they sought to know more about the Catholic Faith and apply it to their lives were anxious to serve the Church but were limited in the possibilities open to them. Whereas today…

“There is no reason why the Church and the State should clash”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2012/06/20 at 9:11 AM
It is not true that there is opposition between being a good Catholic and serving civil society faithfully. In the same way there is no reason why the Church and the State should clash when they proceed with the lawful exercise of their respective authorities, in fulfillment of the mission God has entrusted to them. Those who affirm the contrary are liars, yes, liars! They are the same people who honour a false liberty, and ask us Catholics “to do them the favour” of going back to the catacombs. (Furrow, 301)

You must foster everywhere a genuine ‘lay outlook’, which will lead to three conclusions: be sufficiently honest, so as to shoulder one’s own personal responsibility; be sufficiently Christian, so as to respect those brothers in the Faith who, in matters of free discussion, propose solutions which differ from those which each one of us maintains; and be sufficiently Catholic so as not to use our Mother the Church, involving her in human factions.

It is obvious that, in this field as in all others, you would not be able to carry out this program of sanctifying your everyday life if you did not enjoy all the freedom which proceeds from your dignity as men and women created in the image of God and which the Church freely recognises. Personal freedom is essential to the Christian life. But do not forget, my children, that I always speak of a responsible freedom.

Interpret, then, my words as what they are: a call to exercise your rights every day, and not merely in time of emergency. A call to fulfil honourably your commitments as citizens, in all fields — in politics and in financial affairs, in university life and in your job — accepting with courage all the consequences of your free decisions and the personal independence which corresponds to each one of you. A Christian ‘lay outlook’ of this sort will enable you to flee from all intolerance, from all fanaticism. To put it in a positive way, it will help you to live in peace with all your fellow citizens, and to promote this understanding and harmony in all spheres of social life. (Conversations with Monsignor Escrivá, 117)