GENERAL GUIDING PRINCIPLES FOR THE COUNCIL’S MISSION/PURPOSE-Revised August 7, 2012; Discussion continues on September 11, 2012
These principles guide the council members in their deliberations, endorsement of programs, and undertaking of positions and recommendations to the Archdiocese.
The Council of the Baptized listens to and voices the concerns of Catholics in the Archdiocese who are inspired by the spirit of Vatican II as a Church fully alive, locally and universally, that radiates Jesus’ core teaching of radical equality, unabashed inclusivity, and transforming love.
- We seek above all to be always true in deliberations to the spirit of Vatican II: openness to the world with the prophetic voice of the Gospel.
- We are committed to speak for the people in our community who bring forward concerns of conscience.
- We work toward full inclusion, participation, and empowerment of all Catholics within the Church.
- We promote justice and reconciliation within the Church.
SPECIFIC ETHICAL PRINCIPLES FOR COUNCIL DELIBERATIONS
Based on the Council’s promise to listen to people who bring forth their concerns of conscience, the Council members can be expected to
- Approach each proposal with a positive, respectful attitude: i.e., discern the concerns of conscience being expressed by the proponents and take them seriously;
- Recognize that the proponents may be more familiar with Church tradition on the particular subject matter than we are, and that they likely have a personal investment in the ideas and strategies proposed;
- Give reasons for one’s own conclusions; try to distinguish between sound reasoning and personal preference;
- Work collaboratively with other Council members in respecting the process, listening to the opinions of others, asking for clarification, and inquiring about the reasons behind conclusions;
- Protect the Council’s credibility by being neither too rigid nor too lax in giving approval.
THE SPIRIT OF VATICAN II: The vision of Vatican II moved the Church
from commands to invitations, from exclusion to inclusion,
from laws to ideals, from rivalry to partnership,
from definitions to mystery, from hostility to friendship,
from threats to persuasion, from suspicion to trust,
from coercion to conscience, from static to on-going,
from monologue to dialogue, from passive acceptance to active engagement,
from ruling to serving, from fault finding to appreciation,
from withdrawn to integrated, from prescriptive to principles,
from vertical to horizontal, from behavior modification to inner appropriation.
John O’Malley, What Happened at Vatican II, p. 307