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Towards Vatican III

an open forum

"The Second Vatican Council was an extraordinary event called by an extraordinary Pope, and it is one of the main reasons why I personally am a Catholic today ...." So wrote John Wilkins, former editor of the The Tablet, on the occasion of the 40th anniversary of Vatican II. Like Wilkins, those who were present during Vatican II report astonishment and elation as the reforms were announced. Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger has said Vatican II is as authoritative as Trent or Vatican I; Pope Paul called it as significant a council as Nicaea, and Pope John Paul has called it 'the guiding star' of his pontificate.

Yet for many the hope has faded. Some believe that the greater participation and freedom promised by the Council has not been fulfilled. Others feel that beauty and mystery has been lost. 40 years after Vatican II, it is perhaps not too early to begin articulating ideas that might provide an agenda for the Third Vatican Council.

Which three issues do you believe a future general council of the Roman Catholic church must address? In an email or letter to the Editor, explain your ideas in a sentence or two. What are up to 10 additional items you would want to see on a council agenda?

Governance, ordination of women and married men, issues relating to the environment and globalisation, authority, liturgy, education, catechesis of young, care of the family, time limits on terms in office - these are just a few of the many matters of interest to Catholics who care about the future Church. Towards Vatican III hopes to 'jumpstart the imagination of the Church and promote a global conversation'.

Submit your ideas now

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from John Collins

Towards Vatican III: agenda

  • Nature of ministry
  • Rationale of church order
  • Women's capacity in ministry
  • How much authority does a church need?
  • Churchwide accountability
  • Inculturation of liturgy
  • Updating 4th century credal language
  • Sexuality - across the spectrum
  • Marriage and Remarriage
  • Redrawing diocesan and parochial profiles

    from Patricia Stevenson rsj

    Response to the agenda for Vatican III

    First - Decentralise, have a collection of churches e.g. Church of Asia, Church of the Americas, Church of Europe, Church of Oceania...
    Second - Leadership within each group to come from the group according to vocation, ability and skill, not gender.
    Third - Each church to approve liturgical styles according to the culture languages and needs of the region.

    Ecumenism - closer ties according to readiness in the region.

    from Patricia Harb

    I hope Vatican 3 is called soon. I hope it declares all liberal Catholics are to be burnt at the stake. Everything the smelly liberals stuffed up, should be fixed up. All the editors at Online Journal and Sr Brady should be ex communicated. This is the stuff dreams are made of.

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