May 14, 2012

The Second Vatican Council's teaching, particularly on Judaism and other religions, is rooted in traditional Christian theology and the Bible, and the Catholic Church should not offer concessions to those who do not accept its teaching, said a judge on a top Vatican court.

Msgr. David Jaeger, a judge at the Roman Rota, criticized a tendency, "here and there in Catholicism, to look leniently upon stray groups that are marginal but well-publicized who denounce the doctrine of the council, including the declaration Nostra Aetate" on the relationship of the Church to non-Christian religions.

Jaeger, who grew up in a Jewish family, said, "While often presented as if it were absolutely new," the teaching of Nostra Aetate "perfectly corresponds to the most ancient intuitions of Christian theology" when it affirms "there can be, and in particular cases are, elements of truth and holiness" in other religions, he said.

In addition, the document emphasized that Judaism has a special status, which "already was extensively explained by St. Paul, particularly in the Epistle to the Romans."