Did you know what they really said?
Note: The following quotes gathered from different sources and from authoritative people, show by their clarity the true spirit of the Council. It is always good to have these quotes at hand when someone says that what is going wrong in the Church is merely an abuse of the real Council texts which apparently were good in themselves. Many of the quotes come precisely from many of the authors of the conciliar texts, “ A good tree cannot bear bad fruits …”
Confession on Doctrinal Changes
“One could make an astonishing list of propositions taught yesterday, and the day before, in Rome, as the only acceptable ones, and which were eliminated by the conciliar Fathers. – Cardinal Suenens, Interview, I.C.I., 15/5/69, [“Informations Catholiques Internationales”]
“The Council has wiped out what I would call the unconditionality of the system. By “system”, I mean a coherent set of notions conveyed by the Roman universities, codified by Canon Law, protected by a tight and rather efficient control under Pius XII, with reports, calls to order, control of writings by Roman censorship, etc. The Council just disintegrated it.” – Yves Congar (O.P.) Une vie pour la verite [ A life for truth], p.220, Centurion, 1975, interview by Jean Puyo
Confession on how the Council was conducted
“Backbiters even say that the experts were the ones who actually conducted the Council. It is not totally wrong. I remember a minute but revealing episode. At the time when the Decree on the Laity was to be discussed, I had noticed a paragraph still (…) inspired by a dual vision: the world on one side, and the Church on the other. I was there with another French expert, and we agreed that it was bad. The paragraph had however already been adopted by the commission; it was consequently impossible to change it. We then drafted an additive, a second paragraph which was more or less saying the opposite. The first paragraph was in a way establishing that dualism and the second was saying, the action of the Church must go beyond it. Bishops from Western France proposed our new text, and it was adopted. – M.D. Chenu (O.P.) Un theologien en liberte [ A theologian without restraint] pp.16-17, Centurion, 1975, interview by Jacques Duquesne.
“… a very efficient infiltration was carried out through notes proposed to the various commissions (…)” Ibid, p.188 [ or 187].
“It all consisted in outvoting men from the Curia and the Holy Office.” – Yves Congar (O.P.) Une vie pour la verite [ A life for the truth]. P. 140 (op.cit.)
Confession on Conciliar Texts
“It cannot be denied that a text like this [ the conciliar declaration on Religious Liberty] says materially something different than the Syllabus of 1864, and even almost the opposite of propositions 15, and 77 to 79 of that document.” – Yves Congar (O.P.) La Crise de l’eglise et Mgr Lefebvre, Cerf, Paris, 1977, p.54.
Lumen Gentium (chapter 3 on collegiality)
“The Church did peacefully its October Revolution.” – Yves Congar (O.P.) Le Concile au jour le jour; deuxieme session [The Council day by day, second session], Cerf, Paris, 1964, p.115.
However in his subsequent book La Crise de l’eglise [ The Church’s Crisis], page 49, note 2, Congar realized his mistake and tried to rectify it:
“The conservative (integrists) have scurrilously misused a word, questionable, as a matter of fact, which we have written about a vote on the college of the Council. (…) They intended to see in it a statement on the sovietization of the Church! It was only an author’s word, neither very good, nor very adequate. To give it another meaning comes down to ascribe to it a sense which it never had and which we clearly reject.”
Gaudium et Spes
“I remember a conference which I had given to bishops in Rome. Minister Roux, who attended it as a Protestant observer, came to see me in the end. ‘This is wonderful, he said; but I disagree. You are too much of an optimist, the world is involved in a permanent tragedy, and we must speak of the Cross of Christ. The world which you are building is too beautiful.’
“We took that objection into consideration; we inserted perspectives on sin, here and there; but they looked like added parts. It is true that we have not integrated the world’s tragedy enough. But that optimism, which imbued the whole Council still appeals to me.” M.D. Chenu (O.P.) Un theologien en liberte [ A theologian without restraint]. P.182, Centurion, 1975, interviewed by Jacques Duquesne.
Fr. Congar, father of the new ecclesiology which triumphed at the Vatican II Council, received several warnings from Rome in the 1950’s. He then determined, in writing, not to submit; “Continue to write this way to a maximum, using all these opportunities which I still have. That is what my fight is all about. I know ( and ‘they’ know) that sooner or later all that I am saying and writing is just the opposite of the system. Yes, this is really my struggle: my theological, historical, ecclesiastical and pastoral labor. The class I am teaching at present, De Ecclesia, as if nothing happened, this is my real answer, this is my real dynamite under the seats of the scribes:. – Yves Congar (O.P.) Handwritten notes of February 1954, quoted by Francois Leprieur (O.P.), Quand Rome condamne [Sentenced by Rome], Plon/Cerf, Paris, 1989, p.259.
Vatican Council II: the Preliminary Conspiracy
I.The Agreement with Moscow
In exchange for the coming of Russian Orthodox observers (i.e. KGB agents), a promise was made not to condemn communism. “France Nouvelle” (French Communist Party central weekly magazine), issue for January 16-22, 1963, page 15:
“Because the world socialist system undeniably proves to be the best and that it is supported by hundreds and hundreds of millions of men, the Church can no longer be content with vulgar anti-communism. She has even entered into an agreement with the Russian Orthodox Church that no direct attacks against the communist regime would be made during the Council.”
A confirmation of this agreement is to be found in “La Croix” (French Catholic daily newspaper) of February 15, 1963, page 5:
“It is in Metz that Cardinal Tisserant met with Bishop Nicodem, archbishop in charge of foreign affairs for the Russian Church, and it is there that was prepared the message which Bishop Willebrands took to Moscow. Bishop Nicodem who had come to Paris during the first half of August had, as a matter of fact, wished to meet with Cardinal Tisserant. The meeting took place at Father Lagarde’s, the chaplain for the Little Sisters of the Poor, at Bordes, who has always shown interest for international problems. Subsequent to that conversation Bishop Nicodem accepted that someone would go to Moscow to bring an invitation on condition that guarantees would be given regarding the non-political attitude of the Council.” On the Rome-Moscow agreement, see “Iteneraires”, #280, pages 1 to 15.
II. The Agreement with the Jews
Lazare Landarau, in “Tribune Juive”, issue #1001, (December 25-31, 1987):
“On a foggy and frosty night of the 1962-63 winter, I went to an extraordinary invitation at the Community Center for Peace in Strasberg. The Jewish leaders were receiving secretly an envoy of the Pope in the basement. At the end of the Shabbath, about ten of us welcomed a Dominican in white garb, Rev.Fr. Yves Congar, who had received a mission from Cardinal Bea on behalf of John XXIII, to ask us, on the threshold of the Council, what we were expecting from the Catholic Church (…)
“The Jews, held on the fringe of Christian society for nearly 20 centuries, often treated as subalterns, enemies and deicides, were asking for total rehabilitation. Descending in direct line from Abraham’s monotheist lineage, out of which came Christianity, they were requesting to be regarded as brothers, partners in equal dignity, of the Christian Church. (…)
“The white messenger – without any ornament or symbol- went back to Rome with innumerable requests comforting ours. After difficult proceedings (…) the Council acceded to our wishes. The Declaration Nostra Aetate, no.4 was – as Fr. Congar and three drafters of that text confirmed to me – a true revolution in the Church’s doctrine about the Jews (…)
“Homilies and catechism books were changed within a few years. In France, the flower of this renovated doctrine was offered by the Editions du Centurion under the title: La Foi des Catholiques [The Catholic Faith]. The French episcopate – with L.A. Elchinger, Bishop of Strasbourg – had played a decisive part in the presentation, during the Council, of today’s ‘Jewish problem’. The clergy adopted the conciliar decisions with alacrity. That attitude had a precious guide in the Pastoral Orientations of the Episcopal committee for relations with Judaism, published by the French Episcopal Conference on April 16, 1973.
“At the Vatican itself, this trend of thought was confirmed in an exceptional way. In the very presence of Pope John-Paul II and the bishops of the whole world, Cardinal Etchegaray, minister of the Holy see, on October 4, 1983, pronounced an astonishing statement which sums up all the Jewish “Problems” in two points:
• Total and final reconciliation with Judaism and the Jews
• Repentance and forgiveness asked for all the evil caused in the past.
“Since the secret visit of Fr.Congar in a hidden location of the synagogue, on a cold winter night, the Church’s doctrine really had been through a total transformation.” [On that agreement, see “Itineraires”, #III]
III. An Agreement with the Protestants?
Cardinal Willebrands recounted in his work on “Vatican II – La Liberte Religieuse” (coll. Unam Sanctam, Paris, Cerf, 1967) how the Ecumenical Counsel of (Protestant) Churches published, on the eve of the last conciliar session, a list of seven basic demands on religious liberty.
“On the eve of the last conciliar session, which was to adopt the Declaration, the Commission for International affairs of the Ecumenical Counsel, in July 1965, presented the seven essential demand for religious liberty as follows:
1.While maintaining a clearly Catholic basis for religious liberty, the civil liberty which Christians claim for themselves must be guaranteed everywhere to everyone, whatever his religion or belief may be.
2. Religious liberty includes freedom for everyone to change religion or belief without any effect on his political, economical and social status. This right implies the right to keep one’s belief or disbelief without incurring constraint or incapacity
3. In addition, religious liberty includes freedom to express one’s religion or belief. Cult. Teaching, practice and observance of rites are the basic forms of religious expression, and any elaboration of a norm of religious liberty must expressly guarantee them.
4. The right to express one’s religion or belief must be guaranteed to everyone, individually or collectively, publicly or privately.
5. Religious liberty also includes freedom to maintain individual or collective ties with religious communities or associations, whose nature transcends national boundaries. It also includes freedom to express one’s opinions and beliefs, and to communicate information and ideas through any possible media, without considering borders.
6. The norm of religious liberty should be international. It should not be interpreted in a restrictive way to comply with existing national laws and constitutions, but very effort should be made so that constitutions and national laws comply with the international norm.
7. The practice of religious liberty, like the practice of other civil laws, may be subordinated to the limitations defined by law, only in the interest of public order. Religious rights will be applied to all, without distinction of religion or belief. (July 22, 1965)
“At the last conciliar session, the Bishop of Monaco, Bishop Rupp, in a very welcomed speech, asked the Council to make its own these seven demands and to confirm them with its authority. That request was the sign that these seven demands were perfectly acceptable to the Church. In fact, the Council did more than that. Not only did it make its own these seven demands, in equivalent terms, but it established them firmly on justifications taken from the Bible, human experience and philosophical consideration.” (pp. 241-242).
All of these seven demands were adopted in Dignitatis Humanae through eagerness to come to an understanding with the Protestants . Had some preliminary agreement taken place with the [quite Masonic] Ecumenical Counsel of Churches?
“With the new liturgy, non-Catholic communities will be in a position to celebrate the Last Supper with the same prayers as the Catholic Church. Theologically, this is possible.” – Max Thurian, of the Taize Protestant community, in La Croix, May 30, 1969.
“If one takes into account the decisive evolution of the Catholic liturgy, the possibility to substitute other prayers to the canon of the mass, the obliteration of the notion according to which the mass would be a sacrifice, the possibility to communicate in both kinds, then there is no more reason for the Reformation Churches to forbid their faithful to participate in the Eucharist in the Roman Church.” – Roger Mehl, Protestant, in Le Monde, September 10, 1970.
“In my parish of Hamburg, we constantly use Eucharistic Prayer II, with the Lutheran form of the words of the institution and omitting the prayer for the pope (…). To me, the new Roman Catholic Eucharistic prayers prove an open attitude of surprising proportions.” – Ottfried Jordahn, Lutheran minister, conference of June 15, 1975 in Maria Laach.
“New Eucharistic Prayers II and IV show ‘ a structure which agrees with the Lutheran mass.’ “ - F. Schultz, report of the Lutheran liturgical conference of May 15, 1972.
“The revised Roman liturgy now looks very much like the Anglican liturgy.” – Pawley, Anglican archdeacon, in his book ‘Rome and Canterbury during Four Centuries’.
“Given the current forms of the Eucharistic celebration in the Catholic Church and as a result of the existing theological convergence, many obstacles which might have prevented a Protestant from participating in its Eucharistic celebration seem to be vanishing. It should be possible today to a Protestant to see in the Catholic Eucharistic celebration the Last Supper of the Lord, i.e. the Protestant holy communion … We hold out for the new liturgical prayers which agree with us and which fortunately shade the theology of sacrifice, which we used to allot to Catholicism.” – Official declaration of the Higher Consistory of the Confession of Augsburg of Alsace and Lorraine of December 8, 1973.
“The re-introduction of the Pius V mass (even through the back door and in the revision of the Roman Missal of 1962) is much more a question of language: it is a doctrinal question of utmost importance, at the heart of the debate between Catholics and Protestants, a debate which I believed had come to an end (…). Many of our forefathers in the faith, reformed according to the word of God, had rather die at the stake than attend such a mass which Pope Pius V made official against the Reformation. Consequently we were glad to see the decisions made by Vatican II on that subject, and the steadfastness of Rome with all those who did not want to accept the Council and were continuing to use a mass which to us is contrary to the Gospel.” – Minister Michel Viot, after the October 3, 1984 indult, given for the celebration of St. Pius V Mass under certain conditions, in the readers column, in Le Monde.