“A New Pentecost”: that was how Blessed John XXIII spoke of the great grace he looked for from the Second Vatican Ecumenical Council. My presentation will consider the Second Vatican Council as aimed at leading the whole Church to re-appropriate her mission of proclaiming Christ anew, in order to bring our age into the New Creation of which he is the head. Like the Council of Trent and the First Vatican Council, Vatican II is a response to the challenges of Modernity. In this latest Council the Fathers sought to discern the lights and shadows of our Modern world, in order more effectively to evangelize our times.
Using the fruits of the renewal of theology, the liturgical movement, and advances in Scripture study, the Council focused on the universal call to holiness and the ecclesiology of communion as the dimensions of the Church’s life within which to come to a new understanding of the working of grace within our culture’s focus on the dignity of the human person and human