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64 Jurist 82 (2004)
Collegiality According to Vatican II

handle is hein.journals/juristcu64 and id is 86 raw text is: THE JURIST 64 (2004) 82-115

COLLEGIALITY ACCORDING TO VATICAN II
GEORGE H. TAVARD*
The question of collegiality in the doctrine of Vatican Council II will
be approached as it was faced in the successive phases of the conciliar
proceedings, as far as this can be reconstructed from the Acta et docu-
menta... and Acta synodalia... of the council. This should show how
the final formulations and decisions were reached, and it should throw
light on the meaning of the constitutions, decrees, and declarations that
were eventually promulgated by Paul VI. The main focus will naturally
be on the constitution Lumen gentium.
One should distinguish between the antepreparatory period, the
preparatory period, the conciliar sessions, and the final texts.
I The Antepreparatory Period
This is the name given to the period that went from the announcement
of the council by John XXIII (January 25, 1959), or more exactly from
the creation of an Antepreparatory Commission, headed by Cardinal
Domenico Tardini (May 17, 1959), to the creation of Preparatory Com-
missions (June 5, 1960). The main task of the Antepreparatory Commis-
sion was to gather recommendations made by the persons (bishops, su-
periors general of clerical orders and congregations with more than a
thousand members), and institutions (Catholic universities and Roman
dicasteries) that were consulted concerning the conciliar agenda. They
were asked specifically to give advice regarding certain areas: doctrine,
discipline, and contemporary problems. They responded in various de-
grees of depth and amplitude and in several languages, mostly in Latin.
Each organized its response as it wished, with or without extensive con-
sultations. Given the amount of documentation (16 volumes for the An-
tepreparatory period alone; 62 for the whole council !), a choice was nec-
essary. The author read all the letters from the bishops of France and took
haphazard samples from several other countries: Germany, USA,
Japan.... He also went through the two volumes containing the letters
from superiors general and from the Roman dicasteries.
* Assumption Center, Brighton, Massachusetts.

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