"It is not unreasonable to assert that many of the decrees emanating from the Vatican in recent times have sought to put a brake on the developments that grew out of the discussions at the Council."
A number of priests some anonymously, are supporting this campaign which appears to be highly critical of 'The Vatican' and of the Holy Father.
For those of us who lived at the time of the Council, we will never forget what an exciting time it was for us.
The changes in our Sunday worship were only part of the sense of renewal that was sweeping through our church. Pope John XXIII had asked for 'aggiornamento' the bringing up to date of our church and we felt that this was really beginning to happen. As the windows of the Church gradually opened the Spirit blew in, giving the People of God worship in the vernacular, breaking down post Reformation sectarianism, endorsing the work of biblical scholars, affirming the primacy of conscience, acknowledging the need to learn from the secular sciences, breathing Joy and Hope into the Church.
It was really the saints who have celebrated and lived the liturgical act by participating actively. Holiness, as the result of their lives, is the most beautiful testimony of a participation truthfully active in the liturgy of the Church.
Rightly, then, and by divine providence did the second Vatican Council insist so much on the necessity of promoting an authentic participation on the part of the faithful during the celebration of the holy mysteries, at the same time when it reminded the Church of the universal call to holiness. This authoritative direction from the council has been confirmed and proposed again and again by so many successive documents of the magisterium down to the present day.
Nevertheless, there has not always been a correct understanding of the concept of "active participation", according to how the Church teaches it and exhorts the faithful to live it. To be sure, there is active participation when, during the course of the liturgical celebration, one fulfills his proper service; there is active participation too when one has a better comprehension of God’s word when it is heard or of the prayers when they are said; there is also active participation when one unites his own voice to that of the others in song....All this, however, would not signify a participation truthfully active if it did not lead to adoration of the mystery of salvation in Christ Jesus, who for our sake died and is risen. This is because only he who adores the mystery, welcoming it into his life, demonstrates that he has comprehended what is being celebrated, and so is truly participating in the grace of the liturgical act.
"What does this active participation come down to? What does it mean that we have to do? Unfortunately the word was very quickly misunderstood to mean something external, entailing a need for general activity, as if as many people as possible, as often as possible, should be visibly engaged in action. However, the word 'part-icipation' refers to a principal action in which everyone has a 'part'...By the actio of the liturgy the sources mean the Eucharistic prayer. The real liturgical action, the true liturgical act, is the oratio....This oratio - the Eucharistic Prayer, the "Canon" - is really more than speech; it is actio in the highest sense of the word." (pp. 171-2)
Christ is made present in all of his salvific work, and for this reason the human actio becomes secondary and makes room for the divine actio, to God’s work. Thus the true action which is carried out in the liturgy is the action of God Himself, his saving work in Christ, in which we participate... God Himself acts and accomplishes that which is essential, whilst man is called to open himself to the activity of God, in order to be left transformed.
"In the formation of their consciences, the Christian faithful ought carefully to attend to the sacred and certain doctrine of the Church. For the Church is, by the will of Christ, the teacher of the truth. It is her duty to give utterance to, and authoritatively to teach, that truth which is Christ Himself, and also to declare and confirm by her authority those principles of the moral order which have their origins in human nature itself." (n.14)
Stand up for Vatican II is a campaign designed to involve the whole Church, Catholic organisations and individuals, who recognise the benefits the Second Vatican Council brought to the Church to stand together to celebrate the forty fifth anniversary of the closure of the Council.