A legally convened assembly ofecclesiastical dignitaries and theologicalexperts for the purpose of discussing andregulating matters of church doctrine anddiscipline.
In other words: The constituent elements of anecclesiastical council are the following:A legally convened meetingof members of the hierarchy,for the purpose of carrying out their judicial anddoctrinal functions,by means of deliberation in commonresulting in regulations and decrees invested with theauthority of the whole assembly.
OK, so what is the Ecumenicalwhich the bishops,Ecumenical Councils are those to part?and others entitled to vote,are convoked from the whole world (oikoumene)under the presidency of the pope or his legates,and the decrees of which, having received papal confirmation,bind all Christians.
Protestants mean something different by “Ecumenical.” Catholics – the Catholic church throughout the world. Protestestants -the church universal2 2 Margull, Hans Jochen, and Georg Kretschmar. The Councils of the Church; History and Analysis.Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1966, 485.
How many Ecumenical Councils have there been?3Catholic accounting – 21 Ecumenical CouncilsAnglican and Orthodox accounting – the first7 Ecumenical CouncilsProtestants disagree– some accept the first 4, some 7, and many accept none 3 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ecumenical_council
The first Seven Ecumenical Councils41) Niacea I (325)2) Constantinople I (381)3) Ephesus (431)4) Chalcedon (451)5) Constantinople II (533)6) Constantinople III (680-81)7) Nicaea II (787) 4 Bellitto, Christopher M. The General Councils: A History of the Twenty-One General Councils from Nicaea to Vatican II. New York: Paulist, 2002, 17-33.
Medieval Councils58) Constantinople IV (869-870)Great Schism (1054)9) Lateran I (1123)10) Lateran II (1139)11) Lateran III (1179)12) Lateran IV (1215)13) Lyons I (1245) 5 Bellitto, Christopher M. The General Councils: A History of the Twenty-One General Councils from Nicaea to Vatican II. New York: Paulist, 2002, 33-34, 49-59.
Lateran Façade in Rome65 This and later pictures from http://saintpetersbasilica.org/index.htm
Medieval Councils (cont.)14) Lyons II (1274)15) Vienne (near Lyons)(1311-1312)16) Constance (1414-1418)17) Basel-Ferrara-Florence (1431-1445)18) Lateran V (1512-1517)Martin Luther’s Theses (1517)
The Council of Trent (1545-1563)
The Council of Trent (1545-1563)7Papal Bull states the Council’s Purpose:“the extirpation of of heresies,reformation of ecclesiastical discipline,and the peace of the church”Church and Tradition interp ScriptureStrong reaction to lay involvement 7 McDonald, William J, ed. The General Council; Special Studies in Doctrinal and Historical Background. Washington: Catholic University of America Press, 1962, 91-109, and Bellitto, Christopher M. The General Councils: A History of the Twenty- One General Councils from Nicaea to Vatican II. New York: Paulist, 2002, 101-108.
The Council of Trent (1545-1563)cont.Sacraments retained and strengthened the doctrine of transubstantiation was retained and strengthenedRetained the veneration of relicsRetained PurgatoryGave Pope authority over reform ofcatechism, breviary, missalDecision to teach in the VernacularFormulation of central office to explainTrent’s decisions
The Council of Trent (Conclusion)A HARDENING OF POSITIONS
Vatican I (1869-1870)
Vatican I (1869-1870)81st in over 300 years5 years of preparation700 bishops5 volumes of recordsDei Filius against rationalism alone but faith & reason are not incompatibleThe biggie: Papal Infallibility and primacy of jurisdiction 7 McDonald, William J, ed. The General Council; Special Studies in Doctrinal and Historical Background. Washington: Catholic University of America Press, 1962 113-114, and Bellitto, Christopher M. The General Councils: A History of the Twenty-One General Councils from Nicaea to Vatican II. New York: Paulist, 2002, 108-119.
“The traditional opinion is that when thebishops of the world unite to define belief inthe light of what they have received fromtheir predecessors, God will protect themfrom error. This is a manifestation of theinfallibility of the teaching church, and papalinfallibility is compared to it in the definitionpublished by the First Vatican Council.”3 3“Ecumenical Council," in The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th Ed., 2008. (November 04, 2010). http://www.encyclopedia.com/doc/1E1-council.html / This and the next slide.
Angelo Roncalli is elected Pope John XXIII (1958)
Results of Vatican IILiturgy – Mass in the vernacularRevelation – All truth found in the BibleSecular Media accepted with guidelinesThe church – always in need of reform, she is the mystery of God and all are equal, diaconate can marry, doctrine of Mary is made part of the churchEcumenism – the Church is guilty for separation, others are also Church
Results of Vatican II (cont)The E church is also church and has right to appoint its own bishopsBishops of Dioceses are independent of RomeGod is active in all religions. Jews are Not collectively guilty for Jesus’ death. Anti- semitism must be rooted out.There must be no restrictions to religious libertyLaity are part of universal PriesthoodSeminarians need to be in the real worldReligious orders are free to renew themseles
Results of Vatican II (cont)Non-Christian religions must be respected, we can learn from themThe Priest is to be the servant of the people. The bishop is to be the servant of the Priests. Married bishops of the E are accepted and commended.Catholic schools should accept non-Catholic studentsWar is criminal.Christians have an obligation toward the weak.
The RealityMany voices denounce Vatican IIThe Daily Catholic http://www.dailycatholic.org/history/councils. htm calls it the Great Apostasy, and the Abomination of Desolation and names the Pontificate John Paul II heretical.
The HopeIs that there are voices of sanity within the Catholic church who are striving toward openness toward the world and a the Protestant church