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Peritus (Latin for "expert") is the title given to Roman Catholic theologians attending an ecumenical council to give advice. At the Second Vatican Council, some periti (the plural form) accompanied individual bishops or groups of bishops from various countries. Others were formally appointed as advisers to the whole council.[ citation needed ]
At the First Vatican Council, John Henry Newman refused an invitation to be a peritus.[ citation needed ]
Joseph Ratzinger who became Pope Benedict XVI served as peritus to Cardinal Josef Frings, Archbishop of Cologne, Germany, while Hans Küng was a peritus for the Second Vatican Council, rather than for an individual bishop.[ citation needed ]
The German theologian Karl Rahner served as peritus to Cardinal Franz König of Vienna. [ citation needed ]
Cardinal Yves Congar served as a consultant to the council upon the invitation of Pope John XXIII, but was hired as personal and expert theologian (peritus) at the council to Bishop Jean-Julien Weber of Strasbourg which allowed him to attend all the general sessions and to take participate in discussions of any commission to which he was invited to.
The periti of Vatican II,although their official status designates them as at the service of the council, were most often first of all at the service of the currents which clashed at the council, either on the side of a reform of the church (acceptance of religious freedom, revision of church–state relations, reassessment of relations with other religions), either on the side of the continuation of a clash of Catholicism with the other institutions and currents of society, in the wake of the councils of Trent and Vatican I (especially for the experts close to Coetus Internationalis Patrum ).
As for the US, there were 86 periti altogether during the four sessions of the council.
The Second Ecumenical Council of the Vatican, commonly known as the Second Vatican Council or Vatican II, addressed relations between the Catholic Church and the modern world. The council, through the Holy See, was formally opened under the pontificate of Pope John XXIII on 11 October 1962 and was closed under Pope Paul VI on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception on 8 December 1965.
Dignitatis humanae is the Second Vatican Council's Declaration on Religious Freedom. In the context of the council's stated intention "to develop the doctrine of recent popes on the inviolable rights of the human person and the constitutional order of society", Dignitatis humanae spells out the church's support for the protection of religious liberty. It set the ground rules by which the church would relate to secular states, both pluralistic ones like the United States and officially Catholic nations like Malta and Costa Rica.
Marcel François Marie Joseph Lefebvre was a French Roman Catholic archbishop. In 1970, he founded the Society of Saint Pius X (SSPX) as a small community of seminarians in the village of Écône, Switzerland, with the permission of Bishop François Charrière of Fribourg. In 1975, after a flare of tensions with the Holy See, Lefebvre was ordered to disband the society, but ignored the decision. In 1988, against the expressed prohibition of Pope John Paul II, he consecrated four bishops to continue his work with the SSPX. The Holy See immediately declared that he and the other bishops who had participated in the ceremony had incurred automatic excommunication under Catholic canon law, a status Lefebvre refused to acknowledge to his death three years later.
Giuseppe Siri was an Italian Cardinal of the Catholic Church who served as Archbishop of Genoa from 1946 to 1987, and was elevated to the rank of cardinal in 1953 by Pope Pius XII. He was a close friend of Pope Pius XII. He was considered a likely candidate to succeed Pius XII, John XXIII, Paul VI, and John Paul I.
Hans Küng is a Swiss Catholic priest, theologian, and author. Since 1995 he has been President of the Foundation for a Global Ethic. He is notable for his rejection of the doctrine of papal infallibility. Although Küng is not officially allowed to teach Catholic theology, his priestly faculties have not been revoked. In 1979, he had to leave the Catholic faculty, but remained at the University of Tübingen as a professor of ecumenical theology, serving as an emeritus professor since 1996.
Charles E. Curran is an American Roman Catholic priest and moral theologian. He currently serves at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, as the Elizabeth Scurlock University Professor of Human Values.
Alfredo Ottaviani was an Italian cardinal of the Catholic Church. Pope Pius XII named him cardinal in 1953. He served as Secretary of the Holy Office in the Roman Curia from 1959 to 1966 when that dicastery was reorganised as the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith, of which he was Pro-Prefect until 1968.
Aggiornamento, "bringing up to date", was one of the key words used during the Second Vatican Council both by bishops and the clergy attending the sessions, and by the media and Vaticanologists covering it. It was used to mean throwing open the doors of the Church in a desire to dialogue with the outside world. It was the name given to the pontifical program of John XXIII in a speech he gave on January 25, 1959.
Pericle Felici was an Italian prelate of the Catholic Church. From 1947 until his death he held various offices in the Roman Curia, including Secretary General of the Second Vatican Council, head of the Pontifical Commission for the Revision of the Code of Canon Law, and from 1977 Prefect of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura. He became a cardinal in 1967. In 1978, he twice announced to the world from the balcony of St. Peter's Basilica the election of a new pope. At the Council he was identified with the conservatives who sought to maintain Curial control of the proceedings and he was a prominent voice for more conservative and traditionalist views throughout his career.
Subsistit in is a Latin phrase which appears in Lumen gentium, the fundamental document on the church from the Second Vatican Council of the Catholic Church. Since the Council the reason for use of the term "subsists in" rather than simply “is” has been disputed. Generally, those who see little or no change in church teaching in Vatican II insist on the equivalence of subsistit in and “is”. Those who point to a new, ecumenical thrust in Vatican II insist that the term was introduced as a compromise after much discussion, and acknowledges new elements in the Council's teaching.
The Coetus Internationalis Patrum was the most important and influential interest group of the "conservative" or "traditionalist" minority at the Second Vatican Council.
Charles Herman Helmsing was an American prelate of the Roman Catholic Church who served as bishop of the Diocese of Kansas City–St. Joseph.
Ernesto Ruffini was an Italian Cardinal of the Catholic Church who served as Archbishop of Palermo from 1945 until his death, and was elevated to the cardinalate in 1946 by Pope Pius XII.
Roberto Tucci, SJ was a Roman Catholic Jesuit cardinal and theologian. He was created cardinal by Pope John Paul II on 21 February 2001.
Lorenz Jaeger was a German Cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church who served as Archbishop of Paderborn from 1941 to 1973, and was elevated to the cardinalate in 1965.
Thomas Benjamin Cooray, O.M.I. was a Sri Lankan cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church who served as the Archbishop of Colombo from 1947 to 1976, and was elevated to the cardinalate in 1965 by Pope Paul VI.
Catholic ecumenical councils include 21 councils over a period of some 1900 years. While definitions changed throughout history, in today's Catholic understanding ecumenical councils are assemblies of Patriarchs, Cardinals, residing Bishops, Abbots, male heads of religious orders and other juridical persons, nominated by the Pope. The purpose of an ecumenical council is to define doctrine, reaffirm truths of the Faith, and extirpate heresy. Council decisions, to be valid, are approved by the popes. Participation is limited to these persons, who cannot delegate their voting rights.
Richard Henry Ackerman, C.S.Sp. was an American prelate of the Roman Catholic Church. A member of the Holy Ghost Fathers, he served as Bishop of Covington from 1960 to 1978.
Geraldo de Proença Sigaud, S.V.D. was a Brazilian prelate of the Roman Catholic Church. He served as Bishop of Jacarezinho from 1947 to 1960, and as Archbishop of Diamantina from 1960 to 1980.
Roberto de Mattei is an Italian Roman Catholic historian and author.
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