Reasons for Second Vatican Council: The Laity

 
Vatican view from the bridge after sunset, Rome

It didn’t take long for the 17th century Renaissance and humanism to start bearing fruit. In the middle of 1648, European political and religious division emerges. Rationalist philosophy arises, and in this way, man begins to put aside his Christian faith and resorts to a newfound “faith” in reason as his crutch.

That is to say, the disintegration of what is human and Christian was already being operated at its core. In other words, from this point onwards there exists belief in God but not in Christ.

The 18th century shall be the century of academia and encyclopedias. In the name of reason, all types of mistakes are propagated, which the popes would quickly condemn. The papacy begins to lose its former vigor, only to make way for Enlightened absolutism, i.e. the goddess reason.

In 1798, all religious liberty and fraternity are tossed away with the onset of the French Revolution. The goddess reason was introduced, and the Civil Constitution of the Clergy was issued. With the intromission of the Emperor into Church affairs, the Papal States were invaded, and the Pope was taken prisoner to Fontainebleau.
Years later, the Emperor’s abdication would enable the Pope’s return to Rome, while Napoleon Bonaparte, on the other hand, was exiled to Saint Helena. His unforgettable words were:

“Cities come and go, thrones fall, only God’s Church remains standing.”
—Napoleon Bonaparte

Governments ask for independence from all foreign authority, particularly from that of the Church. In 1871, public or neutral schools are established in which all religious teaching is prohibited. In 1905, the separation of Church and State was declared. After maintaining a strong vinculum for so many centuries, the Church and State each went their separate ways.
The Church loses its credibility and power before the world, and the ties between Church and State, consequently, are torn.

The 19th century is the century of communism and socialism. Religion is rendered futile in terms of state interests and aims; it’s the people’s opium, which narcotizes with a hope in the next life.

The 20th century sees such an unforeseen resurgence in missions, meriting it the name of Century of Missions.

In 1961, recognizing the challenges that the world was facing, Pope John XXIII, known as the good Pope, summoned a council, which would come to be the answer to the world’s needs. The Church felt its obligation in making those Christians at the time aware of the challenges that lay ahead for the Church, seeing as how it was no longer united to the state and the governments.

The Church already foresaw the needs or situations that it would have to face before the world, and so it was necessary to reach the time in which the Second Vatican Council would be summoned, a council which put forth new horizons and solutions for the Church at large and for the Laity throughout the whole world.

The Second Vatican Council was to recognize the necessity in obtaining help from the Laity and the strong need for the Laity, throughout the world, to lend a hand. Since then, the laity has not undertaken its true role in the world yet, as was laid out in this blessed Council.
Even in this day and age, instead of being helped and instructed by the Church so that they may be a fountain of instruction and an example in society, they have come to be the fodder and throwaway of the Church or of the clergy. The Church today has fallen into a state of lethargy and irresponsibility, whereby on the contrary, we have priests that are each and every time more unqualified and inept for instructing and evangelizing.
Consequently, the laity is suffering the abandonment and rejection of its own Church. It’s time for us, the laity, to wake up and bear witness to the truth and to Christ. It’s time for all of us laypersons to give new life and great brilliance to the Church, in which Christ and many of our previous saints made possible the existence of salvation in the world.

We need to stop being ignorant laymen and understand our roots in great detail, as well as our history and truly get to know Christ in person, for this is our faith, because Christ died to the world, but for us, he lives and can be found among us. And the world needs true witnesses, so that the world may be saved.

Editorial Piedrecita has written its first edition, “A Momentous Criticism of Catholicism: Century XXI” precisely paying attention to the needs of the world and the Church or of the laity at large. Our book focuses on teaching the beginnings and foundations of Catholicism with great detail, having as its objective for all Catholics or laymen to be able to receive instruction, know their foundations, and know their faith. Today we lack real instructors that are duly qualified, and all we receive are flimsy discussions of topics from inept teachers and instructors who dedicate themselves to teaching little biblical storiettes.

Nowadays, we have religious Catholic organizations that are only in concordance with the corrupt politics of the Church. Nowadays, we have priests and nuns who are more likened to politicians and true masters of rhetoric, whose conversations ring of conciliatory appeasements in accordance with their own philosophies. However, as they discover laymen who are more qualified than they are, they quickly exclude them, and these laymen are discarded from the Church.
Today we have bishops, priests, etc…, that are ashamed of being Catholic, and they express themselves in an even more political manner or as if the Catholic religion were an issue concerning only the people and not themselves, who actually should be the loyal witnesses of the Gospel by their very own initiative.

As a result, no one nowadays wants to confront the evangelical truth, and that is why we have taken to writing…in order to remove the veil of religious ignorance and so that the world, in truth, can know what should be taught and what is the real Catholicism.

But we have also wanted to explain via a momentous criticism, the present mistakes that the Church has been making. With this and in analyzing our own mistakes, our wish is that we the laity may be able to discover and reach new horizons within Christian life, but of course, without denying the mistakes that have been going on till the present.
From now on, we need Catholics to be truly educated and knowledgeable in the truths that the Church has hidden from us till now. As truly knowledgeable laymen, all of us could be the motivation and strength that the Church and clergy, in general, need to shine in the world and bring the much needed peace within our homes and in the entire world. The Church needs to renovate itself starting from its very womb, and perhaps the layman could become the heart of the new light in Christ.

Editorial Piedrecita invites you, young man…you, young lady…you sir, household father…or you ma’am, household mother…to read our editions and know the truths and foundations of Catholicism. It’s time already for us laypersons to take hold of the decisions and the reins of salvation correctly and without deceit.
It’s time to know Christ and his Church, with earnest and eagerness. It’s time now for us laypeople to be the salt and light of the world.
To receive instruction, to know the mistakes that the Church has been making at present, and to seek light on our journey, let us find the truth.
Read our book, “A Momentous Criticism of Catholicism: Century XXI.”

Blessings and Grace in Christ,
Jesé Retoño
Editorial Piedrecita.
Translation by León Jesuita.