Sunday, March 10, 2013

Fr. Thomas Reese, S.J., "We Cannot Even Call Protestant Communities Churches Any More.”

Somehow or another I heard about the council, and two of us went to the superior and asked for permission to have copies of the documents of Vatican II. He had a meeting with his consultors to decide whether or not we could have copies. The decision was that the two of us could have them because we had asked, but they would not be made generally available to the other seminarians. “Within a month they were mandatory reading,” Reese laughed again. “Even though there were struggles and arguments and fights” during the council, Reese said, “there was a feeling that history was on the side of the progressives and that we were moving forward, that it was pretty much unstoppable and things were going to get better in the church year after year.” Reese said, “This pretty much stopped with the papacy of John Paul II,” who saw “the documents of Vatican II as what was important, not the spirit.”
Currently a senior fellow at the Woodstock Theological Center at Georgetown University in Washington, Reese was a source of concern for the Vatican during his seven years as editor in chief of the Jesuits’ weekly magazine, America. He resigned that post in 2005 following curial criticism of his openness to exploring sensitive church topics, from same-sex marriage and stem cell research to reception of Communion by Catholic politicians who support legal abortion. Before becoming pope, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, as head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, and Pope John Paul II “put their interpretation on the documents ... and often it was the conservative, minority interpretation of the council,” 
 Reese said. “Today the fear is not only that the brakes have been put on, but that the gearshift has been put into reverse. We see changes in the areas of collegiality, liturgy, and ecumenism, where we cannot even call Protestant communities churches any more.” Meanwhile, critics of “the spirit of Vatican II” charge that it is played like a get-out-of-doctrinal-orthodoxy-free card. Ratzinger, now as Pope Benedict XVI, forwards the argument for a “hermeneutic of continuity” that underscores interpretation of the council documents themselves.
Link (here) to the full article at NCR


Sawyer said...

Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI are both correct, and Fr. Reese is wrong. The documents of Vatican II, as they were approved by the bishops and the pope, are authoritative; not a nebulous "spirit" of Vatican II that can be appealed to as justification for any modernist whim or fancy. Furthermore, Vatican II cannot and must not be interpreted as a break with the Church that preceded that council. Anyway, it may very well turn out to have been a minor council as history will judge it.

Maria said...

Fr. Reese recently gave a homily at Holy Trinity in Washington D.C. In it, he suggests that,in honor of Lent, we should confess our "sexism". There is an audio of the homily at Holy Trinity's website. In comparison to the Society's reverential regard for the eighth sacrament of sodomy, well, it seems the least of our failings, don't you think?

"Father Walsh SJ was asked to meet Pope Pius XI in a private audience. It was in the evening, just the two, Father Walsh reporting on the success of the relief mission and the Holy Father grateful for the services of this dedicated priest and religious. As the conversation went on they began to comment, Pope and Jesuit, on the trials through which the Church was then passing: communism, opposition in Mexico, the rising of persecution in Spain. The picture was a bleak one and prospects for the Church not encouraging. Finally, the Holy Father interrupted the conversation and asked a question. "Tell me, Father Walsh, "who have been the worst persecutors of the Church, tell me?" Father Walsh knew the Pope wanted to answer his own question, so he didn't answer. The Pope said, "The Church's worst persecutors have been her own unfaithful bishops, priests and religious." He went on, "Opposition from the outside is terrible; it gives us many martyrs. But the Church's worst enemy is her own traitors."
--John Hardon SJ

Andrew said...

Maria... that quote is so true! Thanks for sharing.

Maria said...

This just in from the "Temple of Tolerance"-on the matter of Ms. Johnson

“If I was Cardinal [Donald W.] Wuerl, I’d buy him (FR. GUARNIZO)a one-way ticket to Moscow,” the Rev. Thomas Reese, a Washington Jesuit and former editor of liberal Catholic magazine America, said in reference to the archbishop of Washington. “These days, arch-conservative priests feel much more comfortable attacking their bishops than do liberals because they feel they’ll get support from conservative Catholic blogs and maybe some in the Vatican.”

Such fraternal regard, such Christian charity.

Anonymous said...

As Fr. Hardon once said, "Where is that damned wine list?"

Fr. Reese is a true Catholic--a person who lives out his faith completely and uses his God-given brain.

Maria said...

Following is a list of all of Rev. John Anthony Hardon's publications:

Christianity in Conflict: A Catholic View of Protestantism, Newman Press: 1959

All My Liberty, Newman: 1959, rev. ed. 1981

Teaching Devotion to the Sacred Heart, Loyola University Press: 1963

For Jesuits: 1963

The Hungry Generation: Religious Attitudes and Needs in a State University, Newman: 1967

The Spirit and Origins of American Protestantism: A Sourcebook in Its Creeds, Pflaum Press: 1968

The Protestant Churches of America: 2d ed. 1968, rev. ed., Double Day & Co Inc.: 1981

Religions of the Orient—A Christian View, Loyola University Press: 1970

American Judaism, Loyola University Press: 1971

The Catholic Catechism: A Contemporary Catechism of the Teachings of the Catholic Church, Image: 1975

Holiness in the Church, Saint Paul Editions: 1976

Religious Life Today, St. Paul Editions: 1977

Christianity in the 20th Century, Image Books, 2d. ed. 1972, rev. ed. 1978

Salvation and Sanctification, St. Paul: 1978

Theology of Prayer, Daughters of Saint Paul: 1979

Modern Catholic Dictionary, Doubleday : 1980

The Question and Answer Catholic Catechism, Hippo Books: 1981

Religions of the World, Image Books: 2d. ed.: 1981

Pocket Catholic Dictionary, Image Books: 1985

Family Consecration Prayer Book, Apostolate for Family Consecration: 1986

The Treasury of Catholic Wisdom, Doubleday: 1987

Basic Catholic Catechism: Fundamentals of Catholic Doctrine for Catechists, The Catholic Voice of America: 1987

The Catholic Lifetime Reading Plan, Doubleday: 1989

Pocket Catholic Catechism, Mass Market: 1989

Catholic Catechist’s Manual: 1989

The Catholic Answer Book: 1989

Catholic Life, Doubleday: 1989

Heart of the Redeemer: An Apologia for the Contemporary and Perennial Value of the Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Manassas Trinity Communications: 1989

Masters of the Spiritual Life: 1990
Great Marian Writers: 1990

The Catholic Family in the Modern World, The Leaflet Missal Company: 1991

History of Eucharistic Adoration, CMJ Marian Publishers: 1991

The Catholic Discovery of America: 1992

Memoirs of Fatima: 1992

The Real Presence: 1992

Retreat with the Lord: A Popular Guide to the Spiritual Exercises of Ignatius of Loyola, Servant Publications: 1993

The Faith: A Popular Guide Based on the Catechism of the Catholic Church, Noram International Partners LLC: 1995

Catechism on the Gospel of Life, Eternal Life: 1996

A Prophet for the Priesthood: A Spiritual Biography of Father Gerald M.C. Fitzgerald, Intermirifica Inc.: 1998

Father Hardon’s Catholic Prayer Book, Eternal Life Inc.: 1999

Spiritual Life in the Modern World, Eternal Life: 2000

Catholic Catechism on the Angels, Eternal Life: 2000

A Biblical Defense of Catholicism, 1st Books Library: 2001

With Us Today: On the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist, Saint Austin Press: 2002
The History and Theology of Grace, Sapientia Press: 2005

Meditations on the Angels, Eternal Life: 2006

Consultor, World Book Encyclopedia

Consultor, The Catechism of the Catholic Church

© 2012 Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J., Archive and Guild.

Where on earth did he find time to drink?

Anonymous said...

Fr. Hardon was quite the scold.