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The Decrees of Vatican II
Compared with Past Church Teachings

Ecumenism  |  Non-Christian Religions  |  Sacred Scripture
Education  |  Religious Liberty  |  Liturgy


Vatican II Teaching on Scripture

If the purpose of the Second Vatican Council was to be realized, that is — to bring about a compromise union with other religions and with Protestants in particular, then the Fathers of the Council would have to issue decrees making their new religion resemble those of the Protestants more closely. This they did by issuing the Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation. This document serves to open the door for new interpretations as well as for varying versions of Scripture — all of which has already led to the multitude of errors and contradictory beliefs we see in Protestantism.

First, the Vatican II decree declares that the Revelation contained in Tradition is evolving:

(P.8) “The Tradition that comes from the apostles makes progress in the Church with the help of the Holy Spirit. There is a growth in insight into the realities and words that are being passed on. This comes about in various ways. It comes through the contemplation and study of believers who ponder these things in their hearts. It comes from the intimate sense of spiritual realities which they experience. And it comes from the preaching of those who have received, along with their right of succession in the episcopate, the sure charism of truth. [Ed. note: “Sure charism of truth” wrongly attributes personal infallibility to all bishops. This is certainly not true.] Thus, as the centuries go by, the Church is always advancing towards the plenitude of divine truth, until eventually the words of God are fulfilled in her.”

Nearly the same thing is said of Scripture, where the Vatican II decree suggests that the Church is continually making new judgments based on the opinions of exegetes or “Biblical experts:”

(P.12) “It is the task of exegetes to work, according to these rules, towards a better understanding and explanation of the meaning of Sacred Scripture in order that their research may help the Church to form a firmer judgment.”

The above is actually a mutilation of a phrase from the encyclical, Providentissimus Deus of Pope Leo XIII, in which this true Holy Father carefully distinguishes between passages in Scripture which are undefined, and those which are defined. The Vatican II decree omits this distinction; rather, it speaks of Scripture in general, and, therefore, teaches differently than does Pope Leo XIII — c.f. the quotation given in the right-hand column.

Next, the Vatican ll decree places Scripture on an equal basis with the Holy Eucharist, as do the Protestants;

(P.21) “The Church has always venerated the divine Scriptures as she venerated the Body of the Lord, insofar as she never ceases, particularly in the sacred liturgy, to partake of the bread of life and to offer it to the faithful from the one table of the Word of God and the Body of Christ.”

Lastly, the Vatican II decree paves the way for the many heretical, multi-denominational versions of the Scriptures, as we now see flooding the religious book stores:

(P.22) “If it should happen that, when the opportunity presents itself and the authorities of the Church agree, these translations (of the Scriptures] are made in a joint effort with the separated brethren, they may be used by all Christians.”

(P.25) “Moreover, editions of Holy Scripture, provided with suitable notes, should be prepared for the use of even non-Christians, and adapted to their circumstances.”

The result of these adaptations and translations made in conjunction with Protestants has been the watering down and even outright denial of the sacred truths contained in Scripture, and thus, a continual loss of faith on the part of former Catholics.


Past Infallible Church Teaching on Sacred Scripture

In opposition to the Vatican II decree, the Catholic Church has declared that the Revelation contained in Scripture and Tradition is immutable:

“I sincerely accept the doctrine of Faith in the same sense and always with the same meaning as it has been handed down to us from the Apostles through the officially approved Fathers. And therefore, I wholly reject the heretical notion of the evolution of dogmas, according to which doctrines pass from one sense to another sense alien to that which the Church held from the start. I likewise condemn every erroneous notion to the effect that, instead of the divine deposit of Faith entrusted by Christ to His Spouse, the Church, and to be faithfully guarded by her, one may substitute a philosophic system or a creation of the human mind gradually refined by men’s striving and capable of eventual perfection by indefinite progress” (Pope St. Pius X, Oath Against Modernism, 1910). [Before Vatican II, the Church had commanded all candidates for the reception of Major Orders to solemnly profess this Oath. The Oath was abolished by the Vatican II Church because it did not agree with her new modernist teachings.]

The Catholic Church carefully distinguishes the bounds of Scripture study and interpretation:

“...the Church by no means prevents or restrains the pursuit of biblical science, but rather protects it from error, and largely assists its real progress... On the one hand, in those passages of Holy Scripture which have not as yet received a certain and definite interpretation, such labors may, in the benignant providence of God, prepare for and bring to maturity the judgment of the Church; on the other, in passages already defined, the private student may do work equally valuable, either by setting them forth more dearly to the flock or more skillfully to the scholars, or by defending them more powerfully from hostile attack. Wherefore, the first and dearest project of the Catholic commentator should be to interpret those passages which have received an authentic interpretation either from the sacred writers themselves, under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost [as in many places of the New Testament], or from the Church, under the assistance of the same Holy Ghost, whether by her solemn judgment or by her ordinary and universal Magisterium interpret these passages in that identical sense, and to prove by all the resources of science that sound hermeneutical laws admit of no other interpretation” (Pope Leo XIII, Providentissimus Deus).

Pope Leo XIII warns that, although the studies of non-Catholics, used with prudence, “may sometimes be of use to the Catholic student, he should nevertheless bear well in mind — as the Fathers also teach in numerous passages — that the sense of Holy Scripture can nowhere be found incorrupt outside the Church, and cannot be expected to be found in writers who, being without the true Faith, only know the bark of Sacred Scripture, and never attain its pith” (Providentissimus Deus).

Lastly, the Catholic Church takes extreme care to insure that vernacular versions of the Scriptures are entirely orthodox:

“As it has been clearly shown by experience that, if the Holy Bible in the vernacular is generally permitted without any distinction, more harm than utility is thereby caused, owing to human temerity: all versions in the vernacular, even by Catholics, are altogether prohibited, unless approved by the Holy See, or published under the vigilant care of the bishops, with annotations taken from the Fathers of the Church and learned Catholic writers.

“All versions of the Holy Bible, in any vernacular language, made by non-Catholics, are prohibited; and especially those published by the Bible societies, which have been more than once condemned by the Roman Pontiffs, because in them the wise laws of the Church concerning the publication of the sacred Books are entirely disregarded” (Pope Leo XIII, On the Prohibition and Censorship of Books).

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