Mirror of Justice

A blog dedicated to the development of Catholic legal theory.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Intentional confusion, alas

Michael Davies (and others) said it long ago: the documents of Vatican II are riddled with intended confusion.  Now Walter Cardinal Kasper is saying what traditionalists knew all along.  Can there be any wonder, then, that the "new spring time" of Vatican II feels so consistently wintry?  

As I argue in a forthcoming paper, given last fall at a conference on the "The Liberty of the Church" sponsored by the Institute for Law and Religion at USD (thanks to Steve Smith and Larry Alexander), Dignitatis Humanae is Exhibit A for this intended confusion.  While frequently celebrated for "developing doctrine," and while in parts *seeming* to do just that, Dignitatis *begins* by affirming that it "leaves untouched traditional Catholic doctrine" (integram relinquit traditionalem doctrinam Catholicam).  Hence the endless debate about which "hermeneutic" to apply to the Council's documents.  


Brennan, Patrick | Permalink