Remembering Vatican II

On October 11, 1962, Pope John XXIII delivered the opening speech for the Council of Vatican II, considered by many to be the most significant event for the Roman Catholic Church and Roman Catholic theology in the twentieth century. The Council lasted three years and resulted in the issuance of a number of important documents on a range of subject including the theology and role of the Church, liturgy, and the role of the laity.

A number of institutions have been holding events in relation to the 50th Anniversary. On October 11, Fr. Dan Griffith and I offered a Mid-Day Reflection at UST Law School titled Remembering Vatican II. Our goal was to help educate people, especially our students who are too young to have lived through the Council, about what Vatican II did and didn’t do, and to explore why some people view the council as a great step forward for the Church and others as the blame for many of the Church’s struggles today.

Fr. Dan began by talking about the historical context of the Council and then talked about some of the Council’s major themes and what he termed “unfinished business” and challenges arising out of Vatican II. I then spoke about the Vatican II and the Role of the Laity.

You can access a recording of Dan and my remarks here or stream it from the icon below. (The podcast runs for 43:15.) We ended the session with some time for (a brief) large group discussion.