Skip to comments.Vatican II's changes reverberate today, Abilene Catholics say
Posted on 02/08/2013 6:59:23 AM PST by Alex Murphy
For Paul Klein, its getting to say the Mass in English and not worrying about the salvation of his non-Catholic friends.
For Emily Pafumi, its the opportunity and privilege of serving as a lay Eucharistic minister in her church.
For Gail Wheeler, its watching altar girls as well as altar boys serving during Mass.
All those changes came to the Roman Catholic Church as a result of the reforms started during the Second Vatican Council, commonly known as Vatican II, that took place from 1962-65. Reforms that began there still reverberate today, touching the lives of people who werent even born when the council met.
Under the leadership of Pope John XXIII, the Second Vatican Council convened in St. Peters Basilica on Oct. 11, 1962, to begin a three-year process. In observance of that historical council, the Diocese of San Angelo will focus on significant changes during the annual Diocesan Conference Day set for Saturday in San Angelo. The theme will be Memory and Reform: Vatican II Fifty Years Later.
The principle speaker will be Sister Maureen Sullivan of the Dominican Sisters of Hope in New York who is a theology professor at St. Anselms College in New Hampshire. Bishop Michael Pfeifer will celebrate Mass at 12:15 p.m.
Vatican II produced sweeping reforms within the church itself and between the church and the world. Among the changes with widespread significance were:
Allowing Mass to be said in the local language, rather than in Latin
Recognition of other Christian denominations
Recognition of the activity of God in all religions
Recognition of the lay person as a fully responsible member of the People of God.
Recognition of the church being sent into the world for the service of humanity, rather than the previous hostility toward the world.
Klein, 83, is a deacon at Holy Family Catholic Church in Abilene and serves as a prison chaplain. Wheeler, 64, is business manager and 23-year member of Holy Family. Pafumi, 22, is a graduate student in Hardin-Simmons Universitys physical therapy program and a member of Holy Family.
All three benefited from the reforms begun at Vatican II. Wheeler was a teen in the 1960s when the Second Vatican Council was meeting. She grew up Baptist and didnt follow the proceedings, other than glimpsing the news.
I was not Catholic then, Wheeler said. My memory is what I saw on TV.
However, she is very much aware of the significance of Vatican II, from seeing girls serving at the altar to women serving as youth pastors and in other roles.
Beyond expanded roles for women, Wheeler said Vatican II opened the door for all lay people. Before Vatican II, the Roman Catholic Church was clergy-focused, with the laity relegated to observer status.
One of the 16 documents to come from the council was Decree on the Lay Apostolate. It states that in the past, the clerical view was dominant, which meant that laymen were given a more passive role.
In the future, the document stated, the lay person is recognized as a fully responsible member of the People of God.
Thats a reform important to Klein, as well. Along with recognition of the laity, Vatican II also addressed the role of the priest in the Decree on Priestly Life and Ministry. In the past, according to the decree, the priest had been a one-dimensional, sacral figure, seen only as a minister at the altar and administrator of the sacraments.
In the future, the decree stated, the emphasis now is on the priest as servant. The priest is to be fully a man, not separated from lay people but with them in his life and work.
That was meant to be taken literally. Before Vatican II, Klein recalled, the altar was against the back wall so that the priest always had his back turned to the congregation when consecrating the elements for the Eucharist.
After Vatican II, the altar was moved forward so that the priest could stand behind it and face the congregation.
It makes him more a part of whats actually going on in the Mass, Klein said.
Equally important to Klein were the changes in the language of Mass and in the churchs views on other Christian denominations and religions.
As an altar boy at St. Georges Catholic Church in Cincinnati, Klein had to give Latin responses during Mass. He remembered having a printed card with the Latin response and the English translation next to it.
Klein had taken Latin at Catholic high school, so it wasnt as hard for him as others with no Latin background, but he still thought it odd that in his Cincinnati neighborhood, people were speaking Latin.
I did question why it always had to be in Latin, he said.
Klein enrolled in St. Francis Seminary near Cincinnati with plans to become a priest. He took another year of Latin there before eventually going a different route. Instead of the priesthood, Klein worked in a machine shop and came to Abilene in 1971 to work at U.S. Brass. He joined Sacred Heart Catholic Church and moved to Holy Family after it was built.
Klein became a deacon in 1976 and has been a prison chaplain for 20 years. Klein was in his 30s when Vatican II took place and he followed it closely. At the time, he was living in Michigan and was part of a group that submitted suggestions and questions to an archbishop in Detroit who was to send them to the Vatican for consideration.
I have no idea whether they did or not, Klein said, but the process kept him engaged in what was happening at the Vatican.
One of the greatest reforms from Vatican II, in Kleins mind, was the change in the way the Roman Catholic Church views other Christian denominations and other religions.
Growing up in a diverse neighborhood, Klein was uncomfortable with the churchs teachings about salvation. One of the documents to come out of Vatican II, Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, stated that in the past, the Roman Catholic Church was viewed as a super-state with the pope as its head. In the future, the document stated, the emphasis would be on the church as mystery and as People of God.
The document noted that the churchs boundaries extend far beyond the visible Catholic Church. The document gave recognition to other Christian churches and faith communities outside Christianity.
That was huge to a young Paul Klein. He could breathe easier for his friends who werent Catholic or even Christian.
I couldnt see how they couldnt be saved as well as the rest of us, he said.
At age 22, Emily Pafumi has no recollection of Vatican II. But her mother sure does.
Pafumi earned a degree in biology from Hardin-Simmons University in December 2011. She now is a first-year student in the physical therapy program.
All during her time in Abilene, Pafumi has been a member of Holy Family Catholic Church. She is a lay Eucharistic minister, meaning she can administer the sacrament after they have been consecrated by a priest.
Being allowed to take part in every aspect of church life is all Pafumi has ever known, from growing up Catholic in Leander to serving at the altar in Abilene. But she has heard enough stories from her mother to know it wasnt always that way for women.
Her mother attended Catholic schools and was required to wear a veil to Mass, which was said in Latin. She learned quickly not to leave her veil at home.
The nuns made them wear a tissue on their head if they forget to bring their veil, Pafumi said.
Her mother also spoke of the significance of moving the altar forward so the priest faces the congregation.
Now you see everything thats going on at the altar, Pafumi said.
Like Wheeler, Pafumi said she doesnt give much thought to what the future may hold for female Catholics. Despite reforms, women still cannot be priests or serve in certain other church roles.
Pafumi is satisfied with the state of the church today, thanks to Vatican II. Her mother is even happier.
She does tell me Im very lucky I dont have to wear a veil to Mass, Pafumi said.
....One of the greatest reforms from Vatican II, in Kleins mind, was the change in the way the Roman Catholic Church views other Christian denominations and other religions. Growing up in a diverse neighborhood, Klein was uncomfortable with the churchs teachings about salvation. One of the documents to come out of Vatican II, Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, stated that in the past, the Roman Catholic Church was viewed as a super-state with the pope as its head. In the future, the document stated, the emphasis would be on the church as mystery and as People of God.
The document noted that the churchs boundaries extend far beyond the visible Catholic Church. The document gave recognition to other Christian churches and faith communities outside Christianity. That was huge to a young Paul Klein. He could breathe easier for his friends who werent Catholic or even Christian. I couldnt see how they couldnt be saved as well as the rest of us, he said.
The Great War reverberates today, though it ended nearly a century ago.
“Reverberation” is not necessarily good.
There's another perspective on that, from Ann Barnhardt:
As I have written about previously, there is NOTHING that will send a lesbian neo-pagan heretic witch nun into a full-on conniption fit as quickly and surely as a CHAPEL VEIL.
Which is reason enough, right there, why EVERY woman should wear a veil whenever she is in the presence of Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. If it makes Sister-Comrade Crewcut flip out, then it MUST be a deeply, deeply good thing.
But I've got more mind-blowing theology to drop. Let's start with this axiom:
We veil that which is HOLY.
Okay, so what do we veil? Or, what are we SUPPOSED to veil? At this point, you poor people stuck in the Novus Ordo are just going to have to trust me.
The Tabernacle is veiled. The Tabernacle physically contains Our Lord in the Eucharist, therefore the Tabernacle is obviously holy. In fact, it is the Holy of Holies. (The Communist-homosexualist infiltrators stopped veiling the Tabernacle - heck they tried to get rid of it altogether in many parishes, because they don't want you to know or believe that He is physically there.)
The Chalice is veiled. The Chalice is the container in which the Precious Blood is consecrated and reposes. Therefore, the Chalice is obviously holy. (Again, Novus Ordo people have probably never seen a Chalice veil. It's all part of the satanic plan to desacralize the Mass and convince the people that the Mass and Eucharist are "a symbolic meal" and "no big deal".)
And, what else is to be veiled?
Why? Because women are the vessels and containers of life in their wombs. And, as we discussed, women reflect the vulnerability and responsiveness of Our Lord upon the altar at the consecration of the Eucharist. The Church has always taught, from day one, that women are to be veiled so that men will be reminded of the HOLY DIGNITY of women, and so that the women themselves will remember and live their lives in accordance with their own dignity.
And these stupid lesbian nuns shriek and bellow that veiling is DEGRADING. They are so far gone all you can do is pity them in their utter insanity.
No problem with the issues listed except:
“Recognition of the activity of God in all religions”
Unless that means “and the Lord hardened Pharaoh’s heart” and “gave them over to a reprobate mind”.
“And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom...”
I think that’s enough to answer the question.
It makes him more a part of whats actually going on in the Mass, Klein said.
How does one become a Deacon and yet have so little knowledge of what is happening at the Mass?
We should be careful of taking a newspaper report at face value. No telling what the Deacon actually said.
In any case, we can be very grateful for Pope Benedict and putting Vatican II in its proper perspective.
We had this things called the Sunday Missal. Want to know what is going on? It was all there in plain English. along with the translation of the words of the mass. Now, I will say this: many priests would say the mass and go through the motions as if they were in a hurry to get to breakfast. Many Catholics would say their beads and ignore what was happening at the altar, except when it was time for communion. Still all in all, there was a high sense of reverence. This has often been lacking since the new liturgy which after all, seemed to copy Luther services.
The one and only Eucharistic minister at any Mass is the priest.
If lay people assist they are called Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion.
The priest is the only person who can concencrate the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ.
I believe that I am correct, but please correct me if I am wrong — that altar boys and acolytes are preferred, for it puts them into a mindset of a priestly vocation.
Pope Benedict, continue to help us.