Parents, moreover, have the right to determine, in accordance with their own religious beliefs, the kind of religious education that their children are to receive. Government, in consequence, must acknowledge the right of parents to make a genuinely free choice of schools and of other means of education, and the use of this freedom of choice is not to be made a reason for imposing unjust burdens on parents, whether directly or indirectly. Besides, the right of parents are violated, if their children are forced to attend lessons or instructions which are not in agreement with their religious beliefs, or if a single system of education, from which all religious formation is excluded, is imposed upon all.
-Dignitatis Humanae, 5
Formulas are adapted to all men of all times and all places. They can, it is true, be made clearer and more obvious; and doing this is of great benefit. But it must always be done in such a way that they retain the meaning in which they have been used, so that with the advance of an understanding of the faith, the truth of faith will remain unchanged.
For it is the teaching of the First Vatican Council that “the meaning that Holy Mother the Church has once declared, is to be retained forever, and no pretext of deeper understanding ever justifies any deviation from that meaning.”
-Mysterium Fidei, 25
“All should see to it, then, that in catechetical work or in the preaching of the word of God they do not teach anything that does not conform to the truth of the Gospel and the spirit of Christ.”
-Nostra Aetate, 4
Therefore, to the glory of the Blessed Virgin and our consolation We proclaim Mary “Mother of the Church”, that is of the whole People of God, both faithful and shepherds, who call her their most beloved Mother; and We decree that henceforth the whole Christian people should, by this most sweet name, give still greater honour to the Mother of God and address prayers to her.
-Post duos menses, 30
Pope Paul VI Conclusion of the Third Session of the Second Vatican Council, 21.XI.1964.
Igitur ad Beatae Virginis gloriam ad nostrumque solacium, Mariam Sanctissimam declaramus Matrem Ecclesiae, hoc est totius populi christiani, tam fidelium quam Pastorum, qui eam Matrem amantissimam appellant; ac statuimus ut suavissimo hoc nomine iam nunc universus christianus populus magis adhuc honorem Deiparae tribuat eique supplicationes adhibeat.
Then there were the principles: intelligibility, instead of being locked up in an unknown language that is no longer spoken, and also active participation. Unfortunately, these principles have also been misunderstood. Intelligibility does not mean banality, because the great texts of the liturgy – even when, thanks be to God, they are spoken in our mother tongue – are not easily intelligible, they demand ongoing formation on the part of the Christian if he is to grow and enter ever more deeply into the mystery and so arrive at understanding. And also the word of God – when I think of the daily sequence of Old Testament readings, and of the Pauline Epistles, the Gospels: who could say that he understands immediately, simply because the language is his own? Only ongoing formation of hearts and minds can truly create intelligibility and participation that is something more than external activity, but rather the entry of the person, of my being, into the communion of the Church and thus into communion with Christ.
Pope Benedict XVI,
14 February 2013
“Nevertheless steps should be taken so that the faithful may also be able to say or to sing together in Latin those parts of the Ordinary of the Mass which pertain to them.”
-Sacrosanctum Concilium, 54
“The religious habit, an outward mark of consecration to God, should be simple and modest, poor and at the same becoming. The habits of both men and women religious which do not conform to these norms must be changed.”
-Perfectae Caritatis, 17
“For this reason, welcoming as coming from above an inner voice of our spirit, We thought the time was now ripe to offer the Catholic Church and the world the gift of a new ecumenical Council, as an addition to and a continuation of the series of twenty great Councils which throughout the centuries have been a real heavenly providence for the increase of grace and of Christian progress.”
Pope John XXIII, Humanae Salutis, 6
“Hac de causa, veluti intimae supernoque quodam instinctu ortae voci obtemperantes, matura iam esse tempora existimavimus, ut catholicam Ecclesiam universamque hominum familiam novo Oecumenico Concilio donaremus, quod eam viginti maximarum Synodorum seriem continuaret, quae per saeculorum decursum ad caelestis gratiae in christifidelium animis incrementum et ad rei christianae progressum tantopere valuerunt.”
“Only in freedom can man direct himself toward goodness. Our contemporaries make much of this freedom and pursue it eagerly; and rightly to be sure. Often however they foster it perversely as a license for doing whatever pleases them, even if it is evil. For its part, authentic freedom is an exceptional sign of the divine image within man.”
-Gaudium et Spes, 17
“But God did not create man as a solitary, for from the beginning “male and female he created them” (Gen. 1:27). Their companionship produces the primary form of interpersonal communion. For by his innermost nature man is a social being, and unless he relates himself to others he can neither live nor develop his potential.”
-Gaudium et Spes, 12