J.J. Goldberg

Reforming the Vatican II Reforms: More on Benedict's Vision

By J.J. Goldberg

  • Print
  • Share Share

A very intriguing piece by Politico’s David Gibson in the Washington Post Sunday Outlook section claims, much as I argued in a column back in August (but in greater depth), that Pope Benedict XVI is engaged in a sweeping campaign to remake the church. In large part what he’s trying to do is to roll back some of the reforms of Vatican II and make Catholicism what it once was, at least as he remembers it.

Thus far, Benedict’s papacy has been one of constant movement and change, the sort of dynamic that liberal Catholics — or Protestants — are usually criticized for pursuing. In Benedict’s case, this liberalism serves a conservative agenda. But his activism should not be surprising: As a sharp critic of the reforms of Vatican II, Ratzinger has long pushed for what he calls a “reform of the reform” to correct what he considers the excesses or abuses of the time.

Gibson sees the latest big-ticket change, inviting conservative Anglicans and Episcopalians into the Catholic church, as part of his overall strategy. It’s frankly a bit hard to see this particular reform as conservative; after all, he’s letting Anglican priests join with their wives, which theoretically opens the door to letting other priests marry. The bottom line, though, seems to be shoring up the church’s conservative wing by bringing in a whole new constituency. Some of the other changes we’ve noted, including the restoration in various places of prayers for conversion of the Jews, are part of this overall Ratzinger plan, Gibson writes. Worth a look.

Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: church reforms, Pope Benedict XVI, Vatican II

The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Joseph Sun. Oct 25, 2009

Benedict is inviting Anglo-Catholics to return to the Roman Catholic Church. Prior to the offical ordination of women and 'unofficial' ordination of gays in the Anglican or C of E communion there was much progress in trying to repair the rift caused by Henry VIII's need to divorce Queen Katherine. Vatican II made Rome more acceptable to Brits. Prime Minister Tony Blair regularly attended Roman mass with his wife and children, eventually formalising his change over. With the C of E considering the ordination of women bishops there is the prospect of widespread defection to Rome. The only people in Britain legally penalised for marrying a Catholic are the Royal Family, as the Queen is Supreme Governor of the Church of England.

Danny Sun. Oct 25, 2009

The Anglican [Episcopalian] situation here is a bit like Conservative Judaism in the USA. Anglicans maintained traditional Christian values while ditching what they saw as out of date bits and pieces, e.g. the Pope ! As time has gone by the Anglicans have come apart over the issue of ordaining women priests, which caused a major rift, and now the prospect of ordaining women bishops. At royal services where The Queen herself is present she seems to have male priests and male choristers, following the hallowed tradition of several millennia during which women's voices were not heard in Church [ From where did the Church inherit this principle of Kol Isha Erva? Ooopps! Did I give it way ?] As head of the English Church as well as the English State, the Queen has a major say in the appointment of bishops, and she is clearly on the conservative wing of the Church. In comparison the Conservative Synagogue in America, originally modelled on Britain's broadbased [Modern Orthodox] United Synagogue, has survived the ordination of women and even women cantors, but is now faced with the prospect of ordaining actively gay and lesbian rabbis and cantors, which could lead to the most traditionalist Conservative synagogues leaving their national body and moving closer to Modern Orthodoxy, which is where Conservative Judaism began. In Canada and Israel this move seems quite possible.

Miriam Chartier Thu. Dec 3, 2009

Ancient and modern world are not far apart. We walk in error.

the mother and child worship tromanism emples and towers the cross pagan now a christian symbol Constantine religious fraud pagan orign of papal office paapal immorality the red garments Bishops the clergy---church govetnment --not G-D'S the Mass the winter festival the spring festival the mystery of the mixture the Source of False Religions... relics of the dead, cutoms and rituals We live in a world that the values upheld through a society built around feelings of kinship and attendant responsibilities.

G-D feelings and their responsibilities are lost to most, only few know G-D in turth and in wisdom, and have intered in the hidden part, and have the desire of G-D written on their inward parts.

for it is written....Psalm 51....Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom. Purge me with hyssop. and I shall be whiter than snow. make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice. Hid they face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities. Creat in me a clean heart, O G-D; and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy Spirit from me.

Do you have the presence of G-D'S holy Spirit?

Job 33....The Spirit of G-D made me(below, flesh, death,) but the breath of the Almighty gives me life. (above, a vessel that the Spirit of G-D is with. G-D With Us

Dust to dust, ashes to ashes, and spirit to Spirit.

What Job is telling us is that their two births. Our seed is held in the Spirit of G-D that made us, but it is in the holy union of the Almighty, that a child is given them, a son is born. Man in the mirror image of G-D.

Man was made male and female and walked in union with G-D. When we turn and put sin out and walk as our fathers Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Read the Decalred Decree in Ps. 2 were David was brought forth into the house-hold of G-D as a son.

We walk in error.....only G-D can save us. No man, Ps. 80...restore us, O G-D of Host; Cause Your face to shine, and we shall be saved.

He provided redemption for His people. He ordained His covenant forever holy and awesome is His name. "The LORD, the G-D of heaven, who brought me out of my father's household and my native land and who spoke to me and promised me on oath, saying. 'To your offspring I will give this land', He will send His angel before you....

Every good and perfect gift is from above, the promised land is above. Our free-wills are a gift from above. G-D provides the day-sss for us to turn, the gift our free-will, the place is now on earth. We need to put sin out.

Miriam Chartier Thu. Dec 3, 2009

Donot call your self a holy child of G-D or a chosen one....

You are just seeds in the gardens of the earth were G-D on High set you down. The Spirit of G-D made you flesh-----but until you put sin out....death will take you. Eternal life is in the breath of the Almighty....who brings forth a child that is given up his or her free-will.

So! it is written..heed the words, my friends..Deuteronomy 5 ....You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your G-D, for the LORD will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses His name.

G-D called the children Jews if they keeped His law, and walked in unity with Him.

Miriam Chartier Fri. Dec 4, 2009

Thank you my friend, J.J. Goldburg.

Find us on Facebook!
  • The eggplant is beloved in Israel. So why do Americans keep giving it a bad rap? With this new recipe, Vered Guttman sets out to defend the honor of her favorite vegetable.
  • “KlezKamp has always been a crazy quilt of gay and straight, religious and nonreligious, Jewish and gentile.” Why is the klezmer festival shutting down now?
  • “You can plagiarize the Bible, can’t you?” Jill Sobule says when asked how she went about writing the lyrics for a new 'Yentl' adaptation. “A couple of the songs I completely stole." Share this with the theater-lovers in your life!
  • Will Americans who served in the Israeli army during the Gaza operation face war crimes charges when they get back home?
  • Talk about a fashion faux pas. What was Zara thinking with the concentration camp look?
  • “The Black community was resistant to the Jewish community coming into the neighborhood — at first.” Watch this video about how a group of gardeners is rebuilding trust between African-Americans and Jews in Detroit.
  • "I am a Jewish woman married to a non-Jewish man who was raised Catholic, but now considers himself a “common-law Jew.” We are raising our two young children as Jews. My husband's parents are still semi-practicing Catholics. When we go over to either of their homes, they bow their heads, often hold hands, and say grace before meals. This is an especially awkward time for me, as I'm uncomfortable participating in a non-Jewish religious ritual, but don't want his family to think I'm ungrateful. It's becoming especially vexing to me now that my oldest son is 7. What's the best way to handle this situation?" http://jd.fo/b4ucX What would you do?
  • Maybe he was trying to give her a "schtickle of fluoride"...
  • It's all fun, fun, fun, until her dad takes the T-Bird away for Shabbos.
  • "Like many Jewish people around the world, I observed Shabbat this weekend. I didn’t light candles or recite Hebrew prayers; I didn’t eat challah or matzoh ball soup or brisket. I spent my Shabbat marching for justice for Eric Garner of Staten Island, Michael Brown of Ferguson, and all victims of police brutality."
  • Happy #NationalDogDay! To celebrate, here's a little something from our archives:
  • A Jewish couple was attacked on Monday night in New York City's Upper East Side. According to police, the attackers flew Palestinian flags.
  • "If the only thing viewers knew about the Jews was what they saw on The Simpsons they — and we — would be well served." What's your favorite Simpsons' moment?
  • "One uncle of mine said, 'I came to America after World War II and I hitchhiked.' And Robin said, 'I waited until there was a 747 and a kosher meal.'" Watch Billy Crystal's moving tribute to Robin Williams at last night's #Emmys:
  • "Americans are much more focused on the long term and on the end goal which is ending the violence, and peace. It’s a matter of zooming out rather than debating the day to day.”
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?

We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.