Nostra Aetate (In Our Times) Day celebrates the Second Vatican Council’s Declaration on the Relation of the Church to Non-Christian Religions. Today we celebrate the work of inter-religious dialogue as an integral part of the Church’s evangelizing mission.
On October 28th St. Columbans Mission Society celebrates an important occasion during the Second Vatican Council when the Council made a Declaration on the Relation of the Church to Non-Christian Religions, Nostra Aetate (In Our Times). It was called Vatican II’s magna carta, and it developed the Council’s earlier document, Lumen Gentium, on the salvific validity of other faiths.
Three important statements it made were: religious discrimination and harassment is wrong; there is truth and holiness in other religions; and it asked Catholics to “maintain good fellowship among the nations” and “through dialogue and collaboration with the followers of other religions, carried out with prudence and love in witness to the Christian faith and life, to recognize, preserve and promote the good things, spiritual and moral, as well as the socio-cultural values” found in other religions.
This document opened the way for further developments so that now we affirm interreligious dialogue as an integral part of the Church’s evangelizing mission.
We invite you to celebrate this important day in prayer and liturgy and maybe a visit to a local temple, synagogue, or mosque.
Columban Fr Brian Vale, Society Vicar, Hong Kong