Pope St. John XXIII’s opening address, ‘Gaudet Mater Ecclesia,’ remains one of the best ways to understand the importance of the Second Vatican Council as a whole.
ANALYSIS: Sixty years after its opening, the meaning of the Second Vatican Council is still contested, as interpretations sidelined by John Paul II and Benedict XVI experience a revival under Francis.
On Tuesday, Oct. 11, the Catholic Church marked the 60th anniversary of the opening of the Second Vatican Council by Pope John XXIII. To commemorate the Council and examine the mark it continues to have on the Church these 60 years later, the Register gathered a symposium of voices. Senior Editor Jonathan Liedl helped organize this effort, and theologian Larry Chapp contributed to the special edition. Both join Jeanette De Melo to discuss Vatican II’s continued relevance in this moment as well as its significance for the future of the Church.
COMMENTARY: While most of the conversation about the Council focuses on its connection with the past, there are at least two important areas where we still need to realize its future.
Bishop Mark Davies: ‘I would echo Pope Benedict’s repeated invitation: that to understand the Second Vatican Council, we must go back to the text of what the Council itself taught.’