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"All the faithful, both clerical and lay, should be accorded a lawful freedom of research, freedom of thought and freedom of expression."

Gaudium et Spes, no 62.

research area:

Authority Structures in the Catholic Church


Lines of research as follows:

the findings are preliminary

1. What changes are required to bring the exercise of authority in the Catholic Church in line with the requirements of Vatican II?

FINDING. There are seven immediate changes to be investigated:
____________The role of the papacy,
____________The authority of Bishops' confernces,
____________The autonomy of the central Synod of bishops,
____________The setting up of pastoral copuncils,
____________Oversight of the election/selection of key church officials,
____________Correct functioning of the Vatican curia as a civil sevice,
____________A CDF guided by independently chosen professionals.

2. By what values should the exercise of authority be inspired in the Catholic church?

FINDING. We suggest the following seven:
____________Honesty and truth
____________Caring for people
____________Democratic process in decision making
____________Accountability and transparency
____________Openness to the Spirit
____________Radiating a Christ who liberates.


We welcome any contributions to our lines of inquiry, whether in the form of observations, critiques, submission of new material or the suggestion of other topics for research.



"Christ's Idea of Authority" by John Wijngaards, Amruthavani, Secunderabad India, 1975; Telugu edition as "Srisabhalô Âdikâram", Secunderabad 1976.
USA edition: Christ's Idea of Authority, 1988.