The Spirit of Vatican II

I just came across an article by Robert Blair Kaiser in the National Catholic Reporter in which he quotes a line from Fr. John O’Malley’s book on the Vatican II Council.  It’s a book I would recommend to you in it’s entirety.   For now,  you might just want to spend some time in prayer over the next week or so meditating on each of the transformations that Vatican II has brought to the Church according to Fr. O’Malley:

“There’s no suppressing of the spirit of Vatican II. John W. O’Malley, a Jesuit historian of the Council, has epitomized it for us. The Council moved us to a new vision of the church:… from commands to invitations, from laws to ideals, from definition to mystery, from threats to persuasion, from coercion to conscience, from monologue to dialogue, from ruling to service, from withdrawn to integrated, from vertical to horizontal, from exclusion to inclusion, from hostility to friendship, from rivalry to partnership, from suspicion to trust, from static to ongoing, from passive acceptance to active engagement, from fault finding to appreciation, from prescriptive to principled, from behavior modification to inner appropriation.”

How has your image of Church been transformed by the Spirit behind the Vatican II Council?

Jim Philipps (3rd millennium pilgrim)

(To read more about my thoughts on Vatican II and other key turning points in the history of the Church, look for my book, “Turning Points: Unlocking the Treasures of the Church”, available through TwentyThird Publications (,, or

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