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Freedom Within And Without Part 1
Benedict XVI has identified two Second Vatican Council documents on religious freedom,  and on relations between Christianity and other faiths, espe- cially the Jews as representing the most significant"encounter with the great themes of the modern epoch that the council has produced. They are statements "whose import- ance has only gradually come to light in the years since. They were also key to the formation of the schismatic Society of St Pius X. Its founder, Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, insisted that it was his followers, not the post-conciliar Church, who were faithful to the Catholic tradition, especially in these areas.Writing in L’Osservatore Romano to mark  the fiftieth anniversary of the opening of the council by Pope John XXIII, and on page 14, Pope Benedict  is at pains to show that these documents were not a break with the past, which is how they are sometimes represented, but were as implicit in at least some of what  had  gone  before.  He  appears to be answering the Lefebvrist argument by claiming that his "hermeneutic of con- tinuity applies even to these two, and thus supports his broad contention that  Vatican II did not reinvent Catholicism but renewed it. In the process, however, he is making  it clear to the Lefebvrists that he cannot revoke or diminish in import- ance these two key documents. It may even be because  they raised them that  he has realised  how important they are.Most of the rest of the Church is not as interested in recon- ciliation with the Lefebvrists as Pope Benedict is, and has seen the significance of these statements in different contexts. The second of the two mentioned, Nostra Aetate, has transformed the Churchs relations with the Jews out of all recognition. The first, Dignitatis Humanae, has planted ideas about freedom of conscience  in Catholicism that have yet to be fully worked out


Category: My articles | Added by: GreatEconomist (2012-11-24)
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