Washington, D.C. Newsroom, Jul 27, 2020 / 11:15 am (CNA).- Cardinal Joseph Zen, the emeritus Bishop of Hong Kong, has made an impassioned defense of the Second Vatican Council, criticizing both “extreme conservatives” and “extreme progressives” for rejecting the authority and authenticity of the conciliar documents.

In both an interview with CNA and an essay published on his own website, Cardinal Zen said that, for decades, Vatican Council II had been misused to advance “subjective” and “narrow” agendas within the Church.

The cardinal called for a new appreciation of the council documents themselves, and a renewed understanding of what the Church teaches an ecumenical council to be.

“Vatican II happened 50 years ago, but it surely doesn’t belong to the past, its light still leads the Church through the darkness of her journey today,” Zen said in the July 17 essay, in which the cardinal warned against the “danger” of polemical interpretations.

Zen warned against interpretations of Vatican II not “faithful to the documents of the Council, but rather a subjective understanding of it.”

Both “progressive” and “traditionalist” factions within the Church have advanced in recent criticisms the idea that the Second Vatican Council, which took place from 1962 to 1965, represents a definitive break with previous Church teaching and authority. This interpretation of the Vatican II is often called a “hermeneutic of rupture.”

Zen wrote that such interpretations are foreign to the nature of an ecumenical council.

Read more at Catholic World Report

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