Showing posts with label Pontifical Council for Christian Unity. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Pontifical Council for Christian Unity. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Cardinal Koch: SSPX Has to Accept Vatican II

Edit: does this mean that the SSPX will have to give hearty assent to the vague and novel formulations which have no substantial foundation in Church history or doctrine before the 1960s according to Cardinal Koch?

Vienna ( Pope Benedict XVI is dealing with the reconciliation of the Society of St. Pius X as a theologian and one who knows Church history.  "Because he knew that till now every Council had a schism in its wake, it is for him a consideration , in avoiding anything, that he would not want this to repeat where he is responsible": That was quoted from the President of the Vatican Council for Ecumenism, Cardinal Kurt Koch, at a press conference in Vienna on Tuesday.  "Now it falls upon the Society to answer definitively,"  says Koch.  This touches specifically on their position on the Council.

The two answers of November and March which were known to him were considered insufficient: the most recent of the 17th of November is "not known to him."  What is clear, however, is that it won't be enough "if they reject 65 percent of the Council".  The second Vatican Council, which opened 50 years ago and in which the present Pope had functioned as an adviser, forms for the Swiss born President for Unity the great test in ecumenism.  But what is clear after 50 years, "is that the unity needed more time than we thought then".

Today there is an uncertainty over the goal.  Many protestant leaders only want that "all church properties are recognized as Church".  A deeper unity in this case then falls from view.

An important voice, namely the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, is quick to remind that the forms of consensus seeking in important questions of life like peace or environment would not be everything.  Patriarch Bartholomeos is one who seeks after a true unity of the Church.  But he also stresses:  "We need time".  One has "lived through 1,000 years apart".  Many points of divergence are not even theological, rather much more of a historical and cultural type, which never the less don't have easy solutions.

Open Problems in Ecumenical Dialog

In view of the barriers to unity, Cardinal Koch, noted "the Office of the Papacy",  which inn relation to Orthodoxy presents even more problems than with the churches of the Reformation.  Because Orthodoxy has theological arguments against the Papal Office, because it is a jurisdiction without sacramentality. Evangelical theologians and some Catholics like Hans Kung seek on the other hand after a primacy of honor similar to the Anglican Primate.  This is precisely the present breaking test within the Anglican Communion but is also a good example for this, that such a symbolic office functions "only in good weather".

Fundamentally all of the more deeper running steps toward unity need a first gesture of mutual forgiveness and reconciliation, said Cardinal Koch.  One fundamental problem is that most Christians don't see division as a sin and a scandal. In dialog meetings with Orthodox representatives  this is painfully evident that the Orthodox side will not offer small gestures of reconciliation like a kiss of peace because these in Orthodoxy are a precondition for Eucharistic communion.

Considerations of the Reformation with Offers of Reconciliation?

Even the upcoming "Reformation Jubilee" will only bring ecumenical progress, "if it is bound with a mutual recognition of wrongdoing".    As an archetype for reconciliation is Pope John Paul II in the Holy Year of 2,000; "I hope that just that takes place in 2017".

One shouldn't speak then of a 'Jubilee' but of a Reformation Memorial, because we couldn't celebrate a  sin".  It is also known to him that this expression has earned him the description of "anti-ecumenicist".  If, however, 2017 involves this common understanding, then there will be on his side openness to the question, "what greater signs could be set".

Koch went also addressed a widely disseminated falsehood, where Benedict XVI. gives more priority to ecumenism with the Orthodox than the Reform churches.  This is historically false because Joseph Ratzinger has already worked a great deal in Reform theology.

It is also true that Ratzinger had been the one who saved the 1998 Augsburg "Common Declaration on Justification" (1999), a milestone of Ecumenism between Catholics and Lutherans.  The current Pope is since traveled to Regesburg since 1998, where he participated with the assembled Lutheran church worldwide.  The result was approved and highlighted in a document on understanding in the clarity of the  unmistakable and fundamental truth of the teaching on justification.   It was still further stressed that the mutual doctrinal condemnations of the 16th century do not concern today's Church.  In this sense it is pointedly clear that people are justified and saved by grace alone.

Cardinal Koch expressed himself in a press conference also on relations to Judaism, especially on missionary work with the Jews.  Catholic belief is that the bond with the people of Israel is "an important",  at the same time is however "become something new with Jesus" .  How that will happen, is not something easily addressed "in a half minute during a press conference".  Because of this complex interaction the Church looks upon it as an explicit mission to the Jews.  The individual witnesses of Christians to their faith is however a requirement for Evangelism in that which also depends on the belief that the Gospel must be preached to the Jews.

Link to original...

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Cardinal Kasper Denies Suggestions of Schism Brewing in Germany

Editor: Cardinal Kasper also made controversial and encouraging statements earlier last week when he said that more people Communicated with the right intention before the Council than after translated here on Catholic Church Conservation.

The former Curial Cardinal considers the contention of Italian Vaticanista Tornielli about a threatened schism as a "hypothetical construction"

Bonn ( Cardinal Walter Kasper has rejected speculations about a threatened Church schism in Germany. Corresponding notions which appeared in "Focus" are also supposed to be in an alleged Vatican circulating dossier, which the long standing President of the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of Christian Unity, according to a report in the "Zeit" enclosure "Christ and World" this Tuesday, had described as "conspiracy theory" and "hypothetical constructions built up, combined with bits of information and other inadequacies."

The Cardinal explained the motives of the conspiracy theorists: "it seems that they want to breed mistrust and provoke a schism." The Munich news magazine had reported on Pentecost that there is an unofficial dossier circulating in the Vatican, which suggests that there is a schism in the Catholic Church in Germany. Behind this romantic current are hidden church societies, individuals from the German Bishops Conference, Catholic politicians and parts of the Jesuit Order.

The substantiation for this report is according to research from "Christ and World" a blog report by the mostly well-informed Vatican journalist of the paper "La Stampa", Andrea Tornielli. He reported on June 8th that some in the Vatican believe that in the foreground of the Papal Visit there will be a concentrated action of reformist forces in German Catholicism.

Kasper speaks thereon, that there is in his opinion no centrally controlled action of German Catholics for schism. The actions which the alleged dossier describe, whereabouts the open letter of Catholic politicians from January and the memorandum of Theologians in February were, according to the Cardinal, individual actions and not centrally coordinated. The Cardinal doesn't know of a collaboration which according to "Christ and World" has any direction from Vatican circles: "Who should that have been? I know no one here who would do such a thing."

Kasper understands with a view to the Catholic Church in Germany on the great interest for the Papal Visit in September. "There is a great, till now mostly silent majority, to whom one or the other critical questions are appealing, who otherwise are fed up with the other side and simply want to be Catholic," he said.


Saturday, July 31, 2010

New Head of Christian Unity Says Good Things

Rorate Caeli has published this from Gaudium Press, which is a statement from the new head of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, holding forth on things liturgical, not explicitly ecumenical (although they are related as we shall see in the interview), necessarily from the Vatican Council in the interview, here at Gaudium Press.

Of course, the Archbishop acknowledges a fundamental truth that the Council was made to do things which were never explicitly mandated, or even implicitly. Whatever else is going on here one thing is certain, this is not something Cardinal Kasper would have said. The former head of Christan Unity would never have said anything like this, in fact, he was at often at pains to say anything that wasn't offensive to pious ears.

One commenter at Rorate identifies how the addle-headed idea of facing versus populum (like your ordinary USA Novus Ordo Mass was originated from a man Paul VI believed to be a Freemason, Archbishop Annibale Bugnini and the German liturgist, Pius Parsch.

The Archbishop's statement is surprising for a man who is otherwise accused of being for Women's Ordination and generally opposed to Benedict XVI and Father Fessio's "reform of the reform"; he certainly oppposed the Bishop of Chur years ago in his attempt at reform.

We see this as an auspicious and surprising beginning. Perhaps now we could have the Archbishop repudiate his position on Women's Ordination too?

Gaudium Press - These two views [of the Church as People of God and as Mystery] also influence one's position on the liturgy. How should the liturgy be understood today?

All those things that some people say that was new after the Second Vatican Council were not a theme of the Constitution on the Liturgy [Sacrosanctum Concilium]. For instance, celebrating the Eucharist facing the faithful was never an object of Tradition. The Tradition had always meant celebrating facing East, because that was the position of the resurrection. In Saint Peter's Basilica, the celebration took place facing the people for a long time because that was the direction facing East. The second thing was the vernacular language. The Council wished that Latin remain the language of the liturgy.

Yet all those very deep, fundamental, things of the liturgical Constitution, are still ignored by many. For instance, the entire liturgy and the Paschal liturgy. The Easter of mystery, of death, and of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. One cannot celebrate the Paschal [mystery] without sacrifice, and that is the theme that is mentioned in theology. Because the Constitution on Revelation [Dei Verbum] is not yet known in the Church either. We still have much to do in order to receive the Council.

Rorate Caeli...

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Not a Good Choice: Basel Should Get a Good Bishop Out of This

Pope Benedict XVI has chosen Bishop Koch for the Pontifical Council for Christian Unity, replacing another German speaking Archbishop. A lot has been said about this appointment that portrays the new office holder as a good choice, but it's hard to see how this could be the case since many of his public acts and statements put him so squarely against the incipient reform Benedict XVI is said to be accomplishing.

Father Z says this is a good appointment (and perhaps it is), but he certainly isn't as he says, "Another man closely tied to Pope Benedict" which seems to have been something else when we looked at it earlier today, something more affirmative and less neutral... Perhaps Father Z corrected himself, or we misread the blog, wait, here it is,

Archbishop Koch is known to be in the theological orbit of Papa Ratzinger.

Known by whom? It seems apparent to everyone, including the embatteld orthodox priests of the Basel Diocese that this man will not be missed and is in no way in the theological orbit of Pope Benedict, that is, if we assume that Pope Benedict is a restorer of Tradition. In any event, tells a different, more interesting, tale. These sorts of appraisals in the English speaking world seem to happen frequently. It certainly happened in the case of the allegedly conservative Cardinal Schonborn. We've noticed that many of his supporters have grown silent.

What's more than clear is that there are appointments which are unsatisfactory to conservatives, and there are those appointments unsatisfactory to the old liberal Catholics, Catholics who believe the Church needs to change with the times. Is this Pope Benedict's way to isolate an absentee Bishop with controversial theological positions by promoting him to an increasingly irrelevant position?

Perhaps this is an effective downgrade for the Pontifical Council?

So the tragic praxis will continue in Rome, to perpetuate a betrayal of trust against the Holy Father.

Msgr Koch worked at first as a Pastoral Lay Assistant in spiritual care.

After his ordination in June 1982 he later received a doctorate for Dogmatic and Moral theology from the Catechetical Institute in the central Swiss city of Luzern.

Later he was active as the old liberal honorary professor for Dogmatics, Ethics, Liturgical Science and Ecumenical Theology at the University of Luzern.

In his lectures he portrayed the then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger in the fundamentalist corner because of his theological positions.

In 1995 Msgr Koch was selected as the successor of the fallen Basel Bishop Hansjörg Vogel. Because of his contentious theological positions the Vatican hesitated a long time with the announcement of his appointment.

Bishop Koch set himself in the Swiss Bishops Conference against the course of reform of the former Bishop of Chur, Msgr Wolfgang Haas.

Msgr. Koch is till today a partisan of women priesthood. He is a declared enemy of celibacy.

In the last fifteen years he was hardly interested in his bankrupt Diocese and not first among these his orthodox priests, who were completely isolated there.

Instead of that he was gladly occupied in the lecture circuit.

In the Diocese of Basel the following title is circulating for the information by the Roman authorities about Msgr Koch: "Old Liberal Alcoholic Follows Cardinal Kasper".

The next Bishop of Basel will have a very difficult inheritance.

In a letter to all Ministers, which was sent by mail today, writes Bishop Koch, that his Diocese is already vacant on July 1st and he would be called to Rome.

The Pope appointed an Apostolic Administrator to the Diocese of Basel at the same time on June 30th

Link to

Meanwhile, Bishop Mixa is being given some time out for a while till the smear campaign launched against him by the old liberals in Augsburg cools down, at AP.