Pope Francis is cheered by faithful during an audience with health workers, in the Paul VI Hall at the Vatican, on March 3, 2018. (L'Osservatore Romano/ANSA via AP)

Young Catholics call for an authentic, empowering church

VATICAN CITY (RNS) — After a weeklong meeting in Rome with Pope Francis, young Catholics called for an authentic and empowering church where they would feel welcomed.

The call came in a 16-page document approved by the 300 young people from all over the world who participated in a meeting preparing for the Synod of Bishops planned for October on the topic of “Young People, the Faith and Vocational Discernment.”

In preparation for this pre-synodal meeting, 15,000 young people engaged online through Facebook groups. Not surprisingly, the official English text appeared on Facebook before appearing on the official synod website.

What do the young people want from the church?

“Young people look for a sense of self by seeking communities that are supportive, uplifting, authentic and accessible,” said the document, “communities that empower them.” They desire “strong communities in which young people share their struggles and testimonies with each other.”

“The Church oftentimes appears as too severe and is often associated with excessive moralism,” they noted. “We need a Church that is welcoming and merciful, which appreciates its roots and patrimony and which loves everyone, even those who are not following the perceived standards.”

They asked the hierarchy to “be a transparent, welcoming, honest, inviting, communicative, accessible, joyful and interactive community.”

The pre-synod participants noted that many of their peers are leaving the church in large numbers. “Young people who are disconnected from or who leave the Church do so after experiencing indifference, judgment and rejection,” said the document.

“One could attend, participate in, and leave Mass without experiencing a sense of community or family as the Body of Christ. Christians profess a living God, but some attend Masses or belong to communities which seem dead,” the delegates complained. “Young people are attracted to the joy which should be a hallmark of our faith.” They want “to see a Church that is a living testimony to what it teaches and witnesses to authenticity on the path to holiness, which includes acknowledging mistakes and asking for forgiveness.”

The delegates also said that they want “attractive, coherent and authentic models. We need rational and critical explanations to complex issues —simplistic answers do not suffice.”

These models need not be perfect. Rather, “(k)nowing that models of faith are authentic and vulnerable allows young people to freely be authentic and vulnerable themselves.”

A boy takes a selfie with Pope Francis as he arrives in St. Peter's Square for his general weekly audience at the Vatican on March 14, 2018. March 13 was the five-year anniversary of Pope Francis’ election as bishop of Rome. (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini)

The young people said they are looking for mentors who could guide them in discerning their vocation in life. A mentor should be “a faithful Christian who engages with the Church and the world; someone who constantly seeks holiness; is a confidant without judgement; actively listens to the needs of young people and responds in kind; is deeply loving and self-aware; acknowledges their limits and knows the joys and sorrows of the spiritual journey.”

At the same time, it said that mentors "should not lead young people as passive followers, but walk alongside them, allowing them to be active participants in the journey.” These mentors, according to the young people, “should respect the freedom that comes with a young person’s process of discernment and equip them with tools to do so well.”

“The young have many questions about the faith,” said the document, “but desire answers which are not watered-down, or which utilize pre-fabricated formulations. We, the young Church, ask that our leaders speak in practical terms about controversial subjects such as homosexuality and gender issues, about which young people are already freely discussing without taboo.”

They also acknowledged other controversial issues in the church: “contraception, abortion, homosexuality, cohabitation, marriage, and how the priesthood is perceived in different realities in the Church.”

They said “there is still disagreement and ongoing discussion among young people on these polemical issues. As a result, they may want the Church to change her teaching or at least to have access to a better explanation and to more formation on these questions.”

While acknowledging that “there is internal debate, young Catholics whose convictions are in conflict with official teaching still desire to be part of the Church.”

They asked the church to go where young people “are comfortable and where they naturally socialize: bars, coffee shops, parks, gyms, stadiums and any other popular cultural centers,” as well as “more difficult places such as orphanages, hospitals, marginal neighborhoods, war-torn regions, prisons, rehabilitation centers and red-light districts.”

All of this is to bring Jesus and the gospel to young people. “(M)any of us strongly want to know Jesus, yet often struggle to realize that He alone is the source of true self-discovery, for it is in a relationship with Him that the human person ultimately comes to discover him or herself,” they explained. “Thus, we have found that young people want authentic witnesses — men and women who vibrantly express their faith and relationship with Jesus while encouraging others to approach, meet, and fall in love with Jesus themselves.”

The young people said that they want not to be passive but to be leaders in the church. “The Church must involve young people in its decision-making processes and offer them more leadership roles,” said the report. “These positions need to be on a parish, diocesan, national and international level, even on a commission to the Vatican. We strongly feel that we are ready to be leaders, who can grow and be taught by the older members of the Church, by religious and lay women and men.”

The delegates also saw their role as engaging the social justice issues of our time. “We seek the opportunity to work toward building a better world,” they said. “We want a world of peace, one that harmonizes integral ecology with a sustainable global economy. For young people living in unstable and vulnerable regions of the world, there is a hope and expectation for concrete actions from governments and from society: the end of war and corruption, addressing climate change, social inequalities and security.”

One suggestion that did not get into the report was that at the synod in October, each bishop be accompanied by a young person. While that will not happen, hopefully the bishops will listen to what these young people say about themselves, the church and the world they live in.

Writing and approving the 16-page document in a week was a remarkable achievement by these young people granted that many synods of bishops have proved incapable of doing the same in a month’s time. The young people’s willingness to dialogue and build consensus is itself an example to the bishops. Maybe at their synod the bishops should simply approve this document from the pre-synodal meeting of young people and then go home.

Comments

  1. Just another Francis stunt and pretext to ram some more liberal changes through.

  2. The problem with raising expectations is the backlash that inevitably occurs when those expectations are felt to be neutered, diluted, re-imaged and/or ignored.

  3. Youth want bishops to face sex abuse, women in the Church … “The Church should continue to enforce her no-tolerance stance on sexual abuse within her institutions, and her humility will undoubtedly raise its credibility among the world’s young people,” they said…. What are the places where women can flourish within the Church and society?” they asked.“If it is difficult for young people to feel a sense of belonging and leadership in the Church, it is much more so for young women,” they said. ” (cruxnow.com)

  4. “In the words of a 31-year-old Italian pastor named Paolo Mulps, ‘the umpteenth wasted opportunity by a Church” projecting merely the appearance “to be listening to someone.”” (cruxnow.com)

  5. Empowerment? Give me a break!! The RC lost that from the very beginning as there was no Easter.

  6. The reality of Easter-con and other cons:

    From an analyses of the documents by many contemporary NT exegetes:

    The Resurrection is fiction i.e. it was added to make Jesus akin to the Caesars and Greek half gods/half men (1a) Mark 8:31-33 = Matt 16:2l-23 = Luke 9:22, (1b) Mark 9:9b = Matt 17:9b, (1c) Mark 9:12b = Matt 17:12b, (1d) Mark 9:30-32= Matt 17:22-23 = Luke 9:43b-45, (1e) Luke 17:25, (1f) Mark 10:32-34 = Matt 20:17-19 = Luke 18:31-34, (1g) Matt 26:1-2, (1h) Mark 14:21 = Matt 26:24 = Luke 22:22, (1i) Mark 14:41= Matt 26:45b,(1j) Luke 24:7

    Conclusion: Many references but only a single attestation and from the Second stratum (60-80 AD).

    http://wiki.faithfutures.org/index.php/017_Resurrection_of_Jesus

    From the course notes of a large Catholic university’s graduate theology class:

    “Heaven is a Spirit state (no physical bodies abide so where is the resurrected, ascended body????)

    Christ’s and Mary’s bodies are therefore not in Heaven. For one thing, Paul in 1 Cor 15 speaks of the body of the dead as transformed into a “spiritual body.” No one knows exactly what he meant by this term.

    Most believe that it to mean that the personal spiritual self that survives death is in continuity with the self we were while living on earth as an embodied person.

    The physical Resurrection (meaning a resuscitated corpse returning to life), Ascension (of Jesus’ crucified corpse), and Assumption (Mary’s corpse) into heaven did not take place.

    The Ascension symbolizes the end of Jesus’ earthly ministry and the beginning of the Church.

    Only Luke’s Gospel records it. The Assumption ties Jesus’ mission to Pentecost and missionary activity of Jesus’ followers The Assumption has multiple layers of symbolism, some are related to Mary’s special role as “Christ bearer” (theotokos). It does not seem fitting that Mary, the body of Jesus’ Virgin-Mother (another biblically based symbol found in Luke 1) would
    be derived by worms upon her death. Mary’s assumption also shows God’s positive regard, not only for Christ’s male body, but also for female
    bodies.”

    Amazing how this agrees with Professor Crossan and many other contemporary NT exegetes’ conclusions based on attestations and stratums.

    Then there is this:

    “In three controversial Wednesday Audiences, Pope John Paul II pointed out that the essential characteristic of heaven, hell or purgatory is that they are states of being of a spirit (angel/demon) or human soul, rather than places, as commonly perceived and represented in human language. This language of place is, according to the Pope, inadequate to describe the realities involved, since it is tied to the temporal order in which this world and we exist. In this he is applying the philosophical categories used by the Church in her theology and saying what St. Thomas Aquinas said long before him.”
    http://eternal-word.com/library/PAPALDOC/JP2HEAVN.HTM

    Some added tidbits:

    According to Reimarus as referenced in R.B. Stewart in his introduction to the recent book, The Resurrection of Jesus, Crossan and Wright in Dialogue,

    “Reimarus (1774-1779) posits that Jesus became sidetracked by embracing a political position, sought to force God’s hand and that he died alone deserted by his disciples. What began as a call for repentance ended up as a misguided attempt to usher in the earthly political kingdom of God. After Jesus’ failure and death, his disciples stole his body and declared his resurrection in order to maintain their financial security and ensure themselves some standing.”

    From: K.C. Hanson and D. E. Oakman, Palestine in the Time of Jesus, Fortress Press, 1998. p.55

    “Stories circulated to the effect that Alexander of Macedonia was not only the son of Philip II, but also of the god Zeus-Ammon (Plutarch, Parallel Lives, “Alexander” 2.1-3.2); Plato was the son of Ariston and the god Apollo (Diogenes Laertius, Lives of Eminent Philosophers 3.1-2), and Augustus was the son of Octavius as well as the god Apollo (Suetonius, Lives o f the Caesars 2.4.1-7). The extraordinary character of these elites reputedly stemmed from both their divine origins and their kingroups. Their kin-groups provided one form of legitimation-political right to the throne and/or social status (thus the importance of Joseph in Matthew’s genealogy). Their divine procreation provided another: their honor was divinely ascribed, and their greatness as leaders derived from divine paternity.”

    https://www.catholicculture.org/culture/library/view.cfm?id=8154&repos=1&subrepos=0&searchid=441843

    “Fr. Brown could not prove on historical grounds, he said, that Christ instituted the priesthood or episcopacy as such; that those who presided at the Eucharist were really priests; that a separate priesthood began with Christ; that the early Christians looked upon the Eucharist as a sacrifice; that presbyter-bishops are traceable in any way to the Apostles; that Peter in his lifetime would be looked upon as the Bishop of Rome; that bishops were successors of the Apostles, even though Vatican II made the same claim.

    • The stories of Christ’s birth are dubious history.
    • Early Christians understood themselves as a renewed Israel, not immediately as a new Israel.
    • We must nuance any statement which would have the historical Jesus institute the Church or the priesthood at the Last Supper.
    • In the New Testament we are never told that the Eucharistic power was passed from the Twelve to missionary apostles to presbyter-bishops.
    • Only in the third and fourth century can one take for granted that when “priests” are mentioned, ministers of the Eucharist are meant.
    • The Twelve were neither missionaries or bishops.
    • Sacramental powers were given to the Christian Community in the persons of the Twelve.
    • Presbyter-bishops described in the New Testament are not traceable “in any way” to the successors of the Twelve.
    • The episcopate gradually emerged, but can be defended “as divinely established by Christ” only if one says it emerged under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.
    • Peter cannot be looked upon as the Bishop of the early Roman Church community. Succession to his Church fell to the Bishop of Rome, the city where Peter died. However, that concentration of authority produces, says Brown, “difficulties such as those we are now encountering within Catholicism.”
    • Vatican II was “biblically naive” when it called Catholic bishops successors of the Apostles.
    • It is dangerous to assume that second century structures existed in the first century.

    See also http://intotheexpectation.blogspot.com/2012/04/raymond-brown-on-bodily-resurrection.html

  7. My comment was general rather than narrow.

    The growing dissatisfaction with religion, politicians, interest groups and business seems related to a general malaise of unfulfilled promises and unrealistic expectations.

  8. Considering that the liberal demolition of Roman Catholic orthodoxy, which Thomas Reese has gleefully participated in for over forty years, has been the primary reason for youthful (and not so youthful) abandonment, his statement about wanting to bring Jesus and the Gospel to young people is truly laughable.
    Here’s a hint for Catholic and non-Catholic alike – whenever a Jesuit says anything, they’re usually working to do the exact opposite.

  9. TOO many years of PEDOPHILIA…the Catholic church is in a huge free-fall into a well-deserved extinction.
    Today’s YOUTH will enjoy MUCH GREATER spiritual opportunities for themselves. GOD loves them.

  10. Rather along the lines of the general malaise of unfulfilled promises and unrealistic expectations that toppled communism in Eastern Europe and buckled the Soviet Union.

  11. You certainly play your one note tune at every chance.

  12. “Contemporary NT exegetes” = German-influenced former Christians whose imaginations (e.g., the never found mystical “Q”) are exceeded only by their arrogant belief that THEY have all the answers.

  13. BETTER one note of PURE TRUTH, than a symphony of falsehoods!!

  14. “The Church oftentimes appears as too severe and is often associated with excessive moralism,” they noted. “We need a Church that is welcoming and merciful, which appreciates its roots and patrimony and which loves everyone, even those who are not following the perceived standards.”
    So they are telling the RCC they don’t want to follow Jesus, just use His name. ‘Brand name” Jesus without the responsibility or accountability.
    Yet nothing on how to become a Christian and develop a relationship with Christ is of any importance? they want a social club.

  15. It’s nothing new.

    It seems the favourite answer is to create a threat which distracts those about to rebel.

    Maggie was on the way out until she disregarded her advisers and took the step that lead to the carnage of the Falklands War.

  16. There is no one about to rebel in the Catholic Church.

  17. Too bad you’ve never uttered a true statement in any of your comments.

  18. More carrot and less stick. No more “Do as I say, not what I do” coming from gilded pulpits.
    You know, more Christ-like behavior instead of the typical and expected persecution of non-believers. The Inquisition was disastrous policy, remember?

  19. I don’t remember where Christ taught to persecute non-believers. Perhaps you can direct me there?

  20. From children brought up in the church, it is very sad to see nothing said about helping non-believers becoming Christians. What are this assembly’s priorities?

  21. American nuns backed by some bishops.

    Those who are agitating for the Latin Mass etc.

    “Ultra-traditional Catholics rebel against pope in Brazil: ‘He is less Catholic than us’”

    “Catholic rebel: Becoming a female priest”

    They may well be kicked out once they’ve rebelled but………………..

  22. https://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/19/us/vatican-reprimands-us-nuns-group.html

    “The Vatican’s assessment, issued on Wednesday, said that members of the group, the Leadership Conference of Women Religious, had challenged church teaching on homosexuality and the male-only priesthood, and promoted “radical feminist themes incompatible with the Catholic faith.”

    The sisters were also reprimanded for making public statements that “disagree with or challenge the bishops, who are the church’s authentic teachers of faith and morals.” During the debate over the health care overhaul in 2010, American bishops came out in opposition to the health plan, but dozens of sisters, many of whom belong to the Leadership Conference, signed a statement supporting it — support that provided crucial cover for the Obama administration in the battle over health care.”

    “Challenge” – “disagree” – The action or process of resisting authority, control, or convention – rebellion.

    As to the Latin Mass –
    “…..led French Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre to found a seminary and society of priests – the Society of St. Pius X (SSPX) – dedicated to the exclusive celebration of sacraments according to the traditional Roman Rite in 1970. Canonically suspended by the Holy See in 1976, Lefebvre continued negotiations with Pope Paul VI and Pope John Paul II over the following decade. While these negotiations did not produce a regularization of the SSPX, they did induce John Paul II to issue a decree in 1984, Quattuor Abhinc Annos, providing a limited permission, or indult, to celebrate the traditional Roman Rite.”

  23. The sisters quieted down after they received some advice on how to remain Catholic.

    The Leadership Conference of Women Religious is in the process of winding down in slow motion as its membership continues to drop and the average age of its membership continues to rise.

    The Council of Major Superiors of Women Religious, which separated from the LCWR to form a parallel association clearly loyal to the Magisterium, is much younger and is growing.

    Lefebvre’s schism occurred 30 years ago. At this point the schism appears to be substantially over.

  24. The sisters were threatened into ending their open rebellion. I know what happens when a nun leaves an order; she becomes homeless, effectively penniless, jobless and a pariah to those she expected to keep their word.

    The schism appears largely over because it was effectively successful.

    There are people in the RCC who wish to reform it (The current Pope likes to appear to be one of them sometimes). Some will quietly leave, some will quietly stay and rebel inwardly, some will explode into open rebellion – and since the current policy appears to me to be say what is necessary to try to appease both extremes the likelihood is that the rebellion will come from both sides.

    Sometimes I almost wish I liked popcorn.

  25. It wasn’t open rebellion.

    A handful of sisters were very loud, but most were not and would not back the loud ones.

    The schism ended because its leader died, and those that followed were more Catholic then rebel.

    The so-called rebellion has been “coming” for a half century. So far it has not arrived.

    It is not going to.

  26. Yet another church manifesto to bite the dust. Poor, poor “15,000 young [who were] engaged” plus the “approv[ing] 300 young people” – what were they thinking?

    Welcome to the real world, “All the Young Dudes”! (David Bowie, I think; what does he know. Not much either.)

  27. RCC’s idea of evangelism (that’s the word they use) is to bring back the once-baptized & confirmed & “Euchariticized” to the Holy Mother Church.

    This document toying with young people’s lives is their evangelization, according to their Magisterium.

  28. You mean, “Just another Francis stunt and pretext to ram some more … changes through.” “Liberal” or not, they don’t really matter. Remember, this Argentinian guy was a Peronist ally of the junta & enemy of Liberation Theology.

  29. This so called “document” allegedly reflecting the wishes of Catholic youth, is about as authentic as “The Donation of Constantine “

  30. I’m exhilarated that the student/youth “March for Our Lives” exposed to the world how impotently irrelevant Religion is.

  31. “’One could attend, participate in, and leave Mass without experiencing a sense of community or family as the Body of Christ. Christians profess a living God, but some attend Masses or belong to communities which seem dead,’ the delegates complained.”

    At one time, I would have thought they were referring to the “Traditional Latin Mass” (even the late papal Latinist pronounced the language “dead”). Today I think we can add the “Traditional New Rite” with its transliteration, i.e., bastardized rendering foisted on the laity as a “faithful translation”.

    “They also acknowledged other controversial issues in the church: “contraception,…”

    Contraception is a “controversial issue in the church”???

    What planet are these young folks on???

    “The young people said that they want not to be passive.”

    Ah, their idealism! Give them enough years, and most of them will fall into line just like most adult Catholics who are indifferent and/or ignorant about church matters.

    “Maybe at their synod the bishops should simply approve this document from the pre-synodal meeting of young people and then go home.”

    It might save some money.

  32. liberal demolition of RC orthodoxy like—Pius ix condemning democracy or holding slavery as proper in the name of natural law or pope gregory the great holding sex as a necessary evil tainted with sin like so many other popes or my favourite,pope gregory 16 condemning the creation of the railroad as the work of the devil

  33. I think you summarized popes thru the centuries.Rest assured its not just germans,as pre-eminent scholar Raymond Brown stated—peter was no pope or a bishop.

  34. The world’s largest body of Christians disagrees with you.

    I was unaware that the popes through the centuries were influenced by the Germans.

    Raymond Edward Brown was a dynamic speaker, a proponent of “historical-critical” analysis.

    To protect himself from being accused of heresy, Fr. Brown asserted artfully that he accepted the dogma of the virgin birth because the Catholic Church teaches it, even though “the Church through its official teachers has made the decision that a minority New Testament view, however scarcely attested, was a true evaluation of what God did in Jesus.”

    Scholar Gerard Morrissey outlined Brown with a parable:

    “Suppose a family member suddenly takes seriously ill. Nearby is a doctor’s office. So we ask Raymond, a family member, to go for the doctor. Before leaving, Raymond tells us: ‘Our family believes that this man has a special knowledge of medicine. Since the family believes this, and I want to be loyal, I believe it also.

    ” ‘However, I’m not sure that this man is a licensed doctor. Perhaps he is, but it’s possible he is not. Yes, he has two plaques on his office wall. One says he graduated with honors from Harvard Medical School. The second plaque says he was licensed five years ago to practice medicine in our state. But, perhaps these statements are not historically true: they may be a literary device by which the man is communicating an important truth — that he is interested in helping sick people.

    ” ‘One reason we have to doubt whether this man is a licensed doctor is that none of the other tenants in the building has a plaque on the wall supporting such a claim. The silence of other tenants means that either they deny that he is a doctor, or that they are ignorant of the fact. In other words, it is only a minority view within his own building that he is licensed. Would such denial or ignorance by fellow tenants be possible if the man were really what his plaques claim?”‘

    That’s the fruit of “historical-critical” exegesis.

  35. Instruction 20 June 1866
    Pius IX ” SLAVERY ITSELF,CONSIDERED AS SUCH IN ITS ESSENTIAL NATURE,IS NOT AT ALL CONTRARY TO THE NATURAL ANA DIVINE LAW….IT IS NOT CONTRARY TO THE NATURAL AND DIVINE LAW FOR A SLAVE TO BE SOLD,BOUGHT,EXCHANGED OR GIVEN”

  36. Father Brown stated that there is little historical evidence for the virgin birth.Father Brown also acknowledges in his book 101 questions on the bible,that the issues you point to the catholic church has never solemnly defined.Fr BRown had to say some stuff that you quote because of a ever increasing ultra conservative and reactionary pope and episcopacy.But his evidence and other quotes prove otherwise.There is no minority view,unless your looking at carefully selected individuals by the vatican pushing for the staus quo. Even JOseph Ratzinger stated “Christs divinity is not dependant on CHrist not having a human father”
    THe orthodoxy is GOD became man(incarnation) and taught us about the kingdom of God that reigns in us and how to respond to it. it doesnt matter if christ became man thru an act of marital love,God can choose whatever technique he wants. Also in the first 1000 years of christianity christ dying for sinners redemption (Atonement) was rarely taught,there were different interpretations as to why Christ died but atonement didnt come in till Anselm. God abhors human sacrifice in the old testament

  37. No its not NCR. “development of Catholic doctrine of Slavery” World jurist 11 (1969-70) p 306-307. AS far as RAymond BRown goes,in his book 101 questions on the bible he acknowledges that some scholars/theologians argue that things like the virgin birth have never been truly defined(he doesnt support or deny this).He plays the game of the magisterium knowing full well that there is no agreed upon lists of dogma.Father Mcbrien in CAtholicism mention on p 64″AS strange as it may seem,there is no agreed upon list of dogmas”. when Hans Kung asked for a list in the early 70s,the vatican was silent,despite being liked very much by pope paul VI

  38. Well, you managed to find three priests whose bona fides in their own church are at best doubtful, only one of whom is still alive.

    Kung has the same access to the Catechism of the Catholic Church as any other Catholic.

    I believe your citation was actually J.F.MAXWELL, ‘The Development of Catholic Doctrine Concerning Slavery’, World Jurist 11 (1969-70) pp.306- 307.

    If you’re going to rely on the kind of nonsense you find at places like:

    http://www.johnwijngaards.com/publications/favour/fav8.shtml

    you should at least copy it accurately.

  39. “(H)as never solemnly defined” what, the virgin birth?

    Read the Creed at some point.

    Hebrews is entirely about the Atonement.

    Learning theology from comic books leads to errors.

  40. Even Pope JOhn Paul II,in a speech in 1996 stated that the Virgin part of the creed was never defined. Not everything in the creed also is solemnly defined.The book of Hebrews was NOT WRITTEN BY PAUL OR A APOSTLE,it was written by a anynomous writer trying to prevent jewish christians from leaving the faith.Scholars are near unanimous it had nothing to so with PaUL. Now you can go back to the out of date ahistorical commic books.

  41. I did respond to it accurately,stop playing these stupid games that you know nothing about the church^s support of slavery,condemnation of usury under any small percent or sex in marriage being hailed as a necessary evil tainted with sin for centuries

  42. http://www.hprweb.com/2015/01/religious-freedom-slavery-and-usury/

    What did was find three dissenters and some poofery to support erroneous conclusions.

    Btw, if you want some fun, try to find J.F.MAXWELL, ‘The Development of Catholic Doctrine Concerning Slavery’, World Jurist 11 (1969-70) pp.306- 307.

    Here’s World Jurist’s website:

    http://worldjurist.org/publications/

    Good luck.

    I’ve never found it.

    In fact I’ve found citing it sure evidence that the person providing the citation is cribbing off some left-of-whoopee website.

  43. Do provide a citation to the “speech in 1996”.

    The book of Hebrews probably was not written by Paul.

    It was, however, accepted into the Christian canon of Scriptures, because it was sound Christian doctrine, particularly on the Atonement.

  44. It was a general audience speech aug 28 1996,while jpii defended various doctrines on Mary,he briefly mentions the term virgin has never been defined,though of course he defends it.EWTN has a copy of the speech but they have omitted the part I have mentioned.YYou would have to find the original speech on the vatican website. As far as Hebrews go ,even by the 5th century there was doubt.Either way it shows the fallibilty of the church.No true ecumenical council(first 1000 years) rubber stamped a list of official books

  45. you will find it if you look at other cites,even vatican theolgian zalba,according to father charles curran,an excellent moral theolgian and researcher from the 5os still believed ,in support of past popes that slavery was legit.It was the protestant churches that led the way to abolish slavery.When England asked for support the vatican denied it

  46. If you think Hans Küng is a Catholic theologian, why not Charles Curran, eh?

    I must say you certainly have all the zaniest and least reliable sources at your fingertips.

  47. No url, eh?

    What a shock.

    This should get you a bit closer:

    http://www.ewtn.com/library/PAPALDOC/JP2BVM31.HTM

    It begins:

    “The Church has always professed her belief in the perpetual virginity of Mary. The most ancient texts, when referring to the conception of Jesus, call Mary simply “virgin”, inferring that they considered this quality a permanent fact with regard to her whole life.”

    “The early Christians expressed this conviction of faith in the Greek term “aeiparthenos” – “ever virgin” – created to describe Mary’s person in a unique and effective manner, and to express in a single word the Church’s belief in her perpetual virginity. We find it used in the second symbol of faith composed by St Epiphanius in the year 374, in relation to the Incarnation: the Son of God “was incarnate, that is, he was generated in a perfect way by Mary, the ever blessed virgin, through the Holy Spirit” (Ancoratus, 119,5; DS 44).”

    “The expression “ever virgin” was taken up by the Second Council of Constantinople (553), which affirms: the Word of God, “incarnate of the holy and glorious Mother of God and ever virgin Mary, was born of her” (DS 422). This doctrine is confirmed by two other Ecumenical Councils, the Fourth Lateran Council (1215) (DS 801) and the Second Council of Lyons (1274) (DS 852), and by the text of the definition of the dogma of the Assumption (1950) (DS 3903) in which Mary’s perpetual virginity is adopted as one of the reasons why she was taken up in body and soul to heavenly glory.”

    Golly, Wally, that doesn’t sound like it supports the comments you took from that website, does it?

  48. You need the original version ,as I stated earlier EWTN leaves that out(deliberately I might add cause their a rag tag stuck in the 50s group). You need the VAtican website for the original complete text

  49. They are both theologians,and brilliant ones too.They have their scholarship and studies the needed.Woytoya was originally rejected at the grgorian in Rome,a prestigious theology schhol or university.Just because a incompetent pope said they cant teach in the name of the church is irrelevant.Much like the papacy of JPII was irrelevant.It seems funny you say that when Curran hollds not every act of artificial birth control is sin while one pope placed it on the level of christs divinity.A superstitious polish pope he was

  50. Certainly both Hans Küng and Charles Curran think they’re brilliant.

  51. No problem at all:

    http://w2.vatican.va/content/john-paul-ii/it/audiences/1996/documents/hf_jp-ii_aud_19960828.html

    If your Italian is rusty, here is the first section:

    “The Church has constantly manifested its faith in the perpetual virginity of Mary. The earliest texts, when referring to the conception of Jesus, call Mary simply “Virgin”, however, suggesting that they regarded this quality as a permanent fact, referring to her whole life.”

    “The Christians of the early centuries expressed this conviction of faith through the Greek term aeiparthenos – “ever-virgin” – created to qualify the person of Mary in a unique and effective way, and express in one word the faith of the Church in her perpetual virginity. We find it used in the second symbol of faith of St. Epiphanius, in the year 374, in relation to the Incarnation: the Son of God “became incarnate, that is, he was perfectly generated by the ever-virgin Mary, through the Holy Spirit “(St. Epiphanius, Ancoratus, 119.5, DS 44).”

    “The expression “always Virgin” is taken from the Second Council of Constantinople (553), which states: the Word of God, “incarnated by the glorious Mother of God and always Virgin Mary, was born of it” (DS 422). This doctrine is confirmed by two other Ecumenical Councils, the Lateranense IV (1215) (DS 801) and the Second Council of Lyons (1274) (DS 852), and the text of the definition of the dogma of the Assumption (1950) (DS 3903 ), in which the perpetual virginity of Mary is adduced among the reasons for her elevation in body and soul to the celestial glory.”

    I believe you’re finding out that when you rely on materials on websites instead of actually finding and absorbing the source material, it doesn’t work out well.

  52. that is wear I first came across it,many years ,obviously someone took it out.When I originally read it,I marked it down in a notebook so I would remember.Obviously the church playing these tricks is not unusual.As historian jesuit John O malley stated in his studies about Trent —‘IN canon 6 of its decree on penance,the council asserted that from the beginning the church required secret confession of sins to a priest in conformity with the command of Christ…..As we already know however the practice happened centuries latter in the monasteries and only became widespread in the West in the 11th and 12 th centuries” another distortion/abuse by the magisterium. YEs I saw that comment in the original speech of the virgin part of the creed never being technically defined.A curia member must of excised it out

  53. User Bob Arnzen, have you finished using the José Carioca account yet? Disqus would like to clean it up, and also your NRA financial backers won’t want you using that name so suggestive of an illegal immigrant over the long term.

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