Council of the Baptized logo
in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis
February, 2018


Can it be Lent already?  The liturgical year spins around faster and faster.  We hope for a meaningful Lenten season for all of us.

The retired priests of this Archdiocese met recently and wrote a letter for publication in the February 8 issue of The Catholic Spirit.  Signed by their dean, Fr. Ken Pierre, it is about a "cloud of sadness" weighing down this Catholic community.

It seems a fitting Lenten practice to search the soul of our own local church.  How are our brothers and sisters in faith coping with the events of the last several years--parish closings, sexual abuse and cover-up disclosures, bankruptcy, reduced support for lay ministers, polarization, conflicts over LGBTQI dignity and equality, women calling for inclusion while church officials warn about the feminization of the Church, losing our younger generations and many good people of every generation.  Are we a wounded Church in need of healing?  Can we just buck up and move on?

Will you tell us whether you are experiencing the "cloud of sadness" and what you think is necessary for us to heal?  Email us at .  

Our liturgy team reminds us that all the suffering we experience and all the work of human hands to alleviate it--our human experience--is brought to the altar at the offertory of the Mass to be transformed in union with Jesus' offering of his life. The mystery of faith that humanity and divinity are one sustains our hope.  

CCCR and Council of the Baptized are finding hope in the renewal of mission provided by the Second Vatican Council.  We are putting our minds and hearts into understanding the direction we received from the world's bishops in 1965.  In interpreting the Second Vatican Council for their people, the Asian bishops have said the Church needs to be horizontal, participative, dialogic, and prophetic.  Meaning: We all have to communicate, as equals baptized in the Spirit, to make our local church the messenger of hope it should be.  We can look to the Archbishop and to the clergy for leadership, but we have to step up to leadership ourselves.  After anger and mourning in the stages of grieving loss comes the determination to reconstruct a positive future.  We think the direction of Vatican II can help us do that.   

Join us at Council of the Baptized Open Forums to delve into Vatican II themes. On February 13, we heard Carol Tauer, Jim Moudry, and Bill Hunt report their involvement with the excitement of Vatican II when it was occurring in 1962 to 1965.

Join the discussion with theologian Catherine Michaud, C.S.J. on Tuesday, March 13, 7:00 p.m.  It is at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church, 700 S. Snelling Avenue in St. Paul. 

Deepening our Vatican II Spirituality

Like many church councils before it, Vatican Council II effected an enormous change in the spiritual identity of Catholics. Still, fifty-six years later, Catholics feel insecure about what the Council has called us to embrace. Questions still nag at us. We are asking, among other things:
  • *How did this enormous change happen?
  • *Why did it happen?
  • *Why, over five decades later, does there seem to be such resistance to this Council? 
  • *What exactly does it mean to be a Vatican II Catholic? What is a Vatican II spirituality?

Still trying in joyful hope,
CCCR Board and Council of the Baptized