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Letters

Vatican II ambiguities (1) (letter)

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 Contents - May 2001AD2000 May 2001 - Buy a copy now
Editorial: A crucial appointment to Sydney - Michael Gilchrist
Vatican signals continuation of reform process - AD2000 Report
AD2000 Online - Michael Gilchrist
'Systematic instruction in the faith' program to be launched in July - Bishop Luc Matthys
News: The Church Around the World
The Church in Germany: John Paul II expresses serious concerns - Catholic World News
New WA Catholic schools document stresses orthodoxy
US professor defends papal teaching on universities - Charles E. Rice
Why John Henry Newman converted to Catholicism - Michael Davies
A Melbourne artist's labour of love - Michael Gilchrist
Letters: Different Church (letter) - Frank Smith
Letters: Vocation question (letter) - Msgr Richard Schuler PP
Letters: Racism (letter) - Helen Daniel
Letters: Sydney appointment (letter) - Frank Bellet
Letters: Paul Collins (letter) - Arnold Jago (Dr)
Letters: Vatican II ambiguities (1) (letter) - George F. Simpson
Letters: Vatican II ambiguities (2) (letter) - Fr G.H. Duggan SM
Letters: Eucharistic Congress (letter) - Basil Lane
Letters: Elizabeth Anscombe (letter) - Edward Clarke
Letters: 'Courage' (letter) - John Dodwell
Letters: Objectionable cover (letter) - Fr Edward P. Evans
Letters: Altar? (letter) - D.I. Davies
Letters: Destruction (letter) - John D. Pratt
Letters: Queensland Bishops (letter) - Dr Tim Coyle
Letters: African reader (letter) - Fr Stephen B. Muchemwa
Letters: Scripture truth (letter) - Mary Beaumont
Letters: Enlightening book (letter) - Br Con Moloney CFC
Books: 'Becoming Fire' by Fr Ken Barker mgl - Peter Westmore (reviewer)
Books: 'Great Christian Prayers' by Stephen Redmond SJ - Peter Westmore (reviewer)
Books: 'He's Risen' by Phelim McGowan SJ - Mary-Jane Donnellan (reviewer)
Books: 'Prayers From The Heart: for the Feasts of the Year', Joanna Bogle - Mary-Jane Donnellan (reviewer)
Books: 'A Vacation With The Lord' by Fr Thomas H. Green SJ - Catherine Sheehan (reviewer)
Books: Stations Of The Cross (CD), Perth Catholic Productions - Colleen McGuiness-Howard (reviewer)
Poetry: The Ballad of Antichrist - Andrew Huntley
Reflection: 'Blessed are the poor in spirit' - Fr Ian Falconer SJ

Valentine Gallagher (April AD2000) quotes some authorities claiming ambiguities in the documents of Vatican II.

Surely the documents themselves clearly and unambiguously confirm the Church's teaching that the Holy Father is the sole arbiter in such matters: "For in virtue of his office, that is, as Vicar of Christ and pastor of the whole Church, the Roman Pontiff has full, supreme and universal power over the Church, and he can always exercise this power freely" (Lumen Gentium 22).

And: "In this Church of Christ the Roman Pontiff is the successor of Peter, to whom Christ entrusted the feeding of his sheep and lambs. Hence by Divine institution he enjoys supreme, full, immediate, and universal authority over the care of souls" (Christus Dominus 2).

There has been ample time since the publication of the Vatican II documents to obtain a definitive ruling on any ambiguities that may exist. I have discovered none in the Vatican II documents I have read, but I realise that dissenters can employ "creative interpretation" to cast the illusion of ambiguity.

I believe that no set of documents has ever been less carefully studied yet more widely quoted than those of Vatican II.

GEORGE SIMPSON
North Blackburn, Vic

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Reprinted from AD2000 Vol 14 No 4 (May 2001), p. 13

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