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What Did Vatican II Really Teach?

by Catherine Frakas 15 May 2003

What Did Vatican II Really Teach? with Fr. Regis Scanlon You need Real PlayerTo Listen to the Tapes What Did Vatican II Really Teach?with Fr. Regis Scanlonexplains that an ecumenical council is a general or universal council of all of the dioceses of the Catholic Church. Lumen Gentium-Who Is In The Church?with Fr. Regis Scanlonexplaining what the church is and who it is composed of. Lumen Gentium-What Do Catholics Have To Believe?with Fr. Regis ScanlonSince Vatican II many people including some theologians think that it is okay to dissent from papal teaching of the Magisterium of the Church. Vatican II said just the opposite of this. In Lumen Gentium No.25 it states submission of the will and intellect must be given … to the authentic teaching authority of the Roman Pontiff, even when he does not speak ex cathedra…and sincerely adhere to the decisions made by him, conformably with his manifest main and intention… If one’s conscience that is not in union with Church teaching it is in uninformed or in error and must conform to the Magisterium. Lumen Gentium-Who Are Called to be Holy?with Fr. Regis ScanlonBefore Vatican II many lay people thought that Priests, Nuns and other Clergy and Religious were the only ones that were called to be holy. In Lumen Gentium it is stated that all are called to evangelization and to perfection. Since then, many have misinterpreted this to mean that Consecrated Religious life is no better that the life of a lay person and that the laity should be allowed to minister as a consecrated priest does. Rather, the Council meant to encourage the laity to take the faith into the secular world, evangelize in the marketplace and be an example to others by living their state in life according to Church teaching. Lumen Gentium-Is Devotion to Mary Necessary?with Fr. Regis ScanlonLumen Gentium underlines Mary’s role as the Mother of the Church, Advocate, Help of Christians, Benefactress and Mediatrix of Grace. Mary’s obedience of faith means that she is not only the mother of Jesus, but also the Mother of Jesus’ brothers and sisters in the spiritual realm. The Church invokes her mother and asks her intercession which in no way diminishes or adds to the efficacy of Christ the one mediator. Rather her mediation fosters the union of the faithful to Christ. Dei Verbum-Is Everything Catholics Believe in the Bible?with Fr. Regis ScanlonDivine revelation was transmitted by a living teaching Church which involved the transmission of what the Apostles taught to Christians in the early church. The successors of the Apostles, the Pope & the bishops of the church, preserve this Apostolic teaching. St. Paul warns us to maintain the traditions which they had learned from the Apostles. So Dei Verbum says What was handed on by the Apostles comprises everything that serves to make the faithful live in holiness and increase their faith. Dei Verbum-Are There Any Errors in the Bible?with Fr. Regis ScanlonMany people like to describe the Bible as myth. This is certainly not true of the New Testament. Dei Verbum tells us that the Scriptures are no more nor less than exactly what God wished to communicate to His people. It is God working through His Church who interprets and teaches Holy Scripture. Without The Church there would be no New Testament. The Church, through the guidance and inspiration of the Holy Spirit collected those writings and only those writings that were to become the Bible that have been used ever since. So there are no errors in the Bible although there may be misinterpretations by people who are not in keeping with church teaching and subject to human error. Dignitatis Humanae-Is One Religion As Good As Another?with Fr. Regis ScanlonMany have misinterpreted this document on Religious Freedom. This document was addressing the human right of freedom of religion from any Civil authority only. Many liberals have interpreted this document by misapplying it to Catholic Church authority. All Catholics are bound to obey the Magisterium of the Catholic Church. Catholics are not free to believe one teaching of the Church and not another. Dignitatis Humanae-Did Vatican Council II Advocate Freedom of Conscience?with Fr. Regis ScanlonThis document recognized the importance of the human conscience in discerning right from wrong. What has been overlooked is the necessity of all Catholics to do everything possible to develop an informed conscience by learning and following the teachings of the Church. We are not free to follow an erroneous or uninformed conscience. We are required to seek out the truth from the Church and her teachings. Gaudium Et Spes-How Is Human Society Developing?with Fr. Regis ScanlonThis document looks at the relationship between the Church and the world, Christian and non-Christian. The Church wants to offer man assistance in solving problems with the resources that it has received from its founder, Jesus Christ. The council wanted the members of the Church, clergy and laity, to engage the modern world in a dialogue about the value of the family, reproductive rights, a just and fair economy, the evils of pornography, abuse of women and children, and other social problems that continue to flourish as we approach the new millennium. It seems we have poorly understood this mission and have not carried out the councils wishes. Gaudium Et Spes-Should Catholics participate In the Modern World?with Fr. Regis ScanlonOne of the main goals of the Second Vatican Council was to inspire the members of the Catholic Church to take an active role in the developing human society. The Council wants us to evangelize and spread Christ’s teachings in the Modern world. We must speak out against all injustices including social or cultural discrimination, abortion and artificial birth control, dehumanizing pornography and other evils. As members of the Church the council asks us to defend human rights and help all those in material and spiritual need, even our so-called enemies. Gaudium Et Spes-Does Contraception Help or Hinder Married Love?with Fr. Regis ScanlonGaudium et Spes states Married couples should regard it as their proper mission to transmit human life and to educate their children. Love and Life then are both an intrinsic part of unselfish married love. In Humane Vitae, 1968, Paul VI warned that methods of artificial contraception would lead to conjugal infidelity, the general lowering of morality, and a lessening of respect for women and children. Contraception separates life from love making the conjugal act simply a selfish sexual gratification. This selfishness will then begin to effect other aspects of the marriage and lead to separation and divorce. Gaudium Et Spes-Is World Peace Possible?with Fr. Regis ScanlonThe council tells us that true peace will never be achieved once and for all in this life. Rather, it must be built up continually with the fraternal charity, which comes from Jesus Christ. The council states that to obtain peace, we must root out the causes of war, i.e., injustice, excessive economic inequalities, ethnic and racial discrimination and hate crimes. These injustices are fed by our sins. Immorality leads to a lack of self respect and respect for others. Abortion leads people to de-value human life. Unless we repent, pray and address these disorders there can be no peace.

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