*** This is a rough transcript of today’s show ***
It is the 22nd of June 2021 Welcome to the Christian History Almanac brought to you by 1517 at 1517.org, I’m Dan van Voorhis.
If you know a Catholic you might expect them to have a hot take about Vatican II.
What was Vatican II? A council- like Nicea! But after a number of schisms over the past 2000 years these “ecumenical” councils get smaller and smaller.
Was it “a Revolution”? Depends. But most likely either see it as a triumph or a tragedy.
2 Ways of doing Church History:
Start with the early church and see everything since as deformation or reformation.
Start with the present and see everything as leading up to, and flowing from, this moment.
And all of this is a long way to telling you about Yves Congar, the Dominican Priest and Cardinal who died on this, the 22nd of June in 1995. A one-time pariah for his support of the Catholic workers and worker-Priest movements he would become a driving figure behind the populist elements of the theology of Vatican II.
Born in France in 1904.
He attended the Catholic Institute in Paris and the Dominican Seminary
Ordained in 1930 he would become known for his role in the ecumenical movement and in the worker-priest movement. The worker-priest movement sought to reach the working class where they lived and worked. This is emblematic of Congar’s vision of anyone’s “vocation” as being work to which one is called. On behalf of the Ecumenical movement, his first of 16 books was titled “Disunited Christians” and examined the schisms between Rome, Orthodoxy, and the Protestant Church.
Seen as a “liberal” for these views he was banned from teaching and sent to obscure posts.
But with the emergence of Pope John XXIII and his desire to modernize the church, Congar’s vision would go mainline in the Roman Catholic Church. Congar’s theology stressed:
- an ecumenical church,
- a church that highlights the role of the laity over naked Hierarchy
- and attentiveness to the role of the Holy Spirit in the present
Congar had been a prisoner of war during World War II, honored with the Croix De Guerre, and was named a Knight of the French Legion. In 1994, one year before his death, he was named a Cardinal by Pope John Paul II. Born in 1904 Yves Congar was 91 when he died on this, the 22nd of June in 1995.
The last word for today is a good word from 1 Corinthians about church unity and the role of the Holy Spirit
12 For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. 13 For in the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.
This has been the Christian History Almanac for the 22nd of June 2021 brought to you by 1517 at 1517.org.
The show is produced by a man who recognizes the significance of sequels from The Godfather Part II, Vatican II, and Babe II Pig in the City. He is Christopher Gillespie.
The show is written and read by a man whose team has taken out Dallas, has taken out Utah, and will soon dispense with the Phoenix Suns. I am Dan van Voorhis.
You can catch us here every day- and remember that the rumors of grace, forgiveness, and the redemption of all things are true…. Everything is going to be ok.