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Congregation for the Clergy
General Directory for Catechesis

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  • PART TWO THE GOSPEL MESSAGE
    • CHAPTER II "This is our faith this is the faith of the Church"
      • The catechism of the catholic Church
        • Sacred Scripture, the Catechism of the Catholic Church, and Catechesis
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Sacred Scripture, the Catechism of the Catholic Church, and Catechesis

127. The Constitution Dei Verbum of the Second Vatican Council emphasizes the fundamental importance of Sacred Scripture in the Church's life. Together with tradition, it is the "supreme rule of faith", since it transmits "the very word of God" and makes "to resound... the voice of the Holy Spirit". (435) For this reason the Church desires that in the ministry of the word, Sacred Scripture should have a pre-eminent position. In concrete terms, catechesis should be "an authentic introduction to lectio divina, that is, to a reading of the Sacred Scriptures done in accordance to the Spirit who dwells in the Church". (436) "In this sense, to describe Tradition and Scripture as sources for catechesis means that catechesis must imbibe and permeate itself with biblical and evangelical thought, spirit and attitudes by constant contact with them. It also means that catechesis will be as rich and as effective only to the extent that these texts are read with the mind and heart of the Church". (437) In this ecclesial reading of the Scriptures, done in the light of Tradition, the Catechism of the Catholic Church plays a most important role.

128. Sacred Scripture and the Catechism of the Catholic Church are presented as two basic sources of inspiration for all catechetical activity in our time.

Sacred Scripture as, "the word of God written under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit", (438) and the Catechism of the Catholic Church, as a significant contemporary expression of the living Tradition of the Church and a sure orm for teaching the faith, are called, each in its own way and according to its specific authority, to nourish catechesis in the Church of today.

Catechesis transmits the content of the word of God according to the two modalities whereby the Church possesses it, interiorizes it and lives it: as a narration of the history of salvation and as an explicitation of the Creed. Both Sacred Scripture and the Catechism of the Catholic Church must inform biblical as well as doctrinal catechesis so that they become true vehicles of the content of God's word.

– In the ordinary development of catechesis it is important that catechumens and those to be catechized can have trust in both Sacred Scripture and the local catechism. Catechesis, by definition, is nothing other than the living and meaningful transmission of these "documents of faith". (439)




435) DV 21.



436) MPD 9c. Cf. Pontifical Biblical Commission, The interpretation of the Bible in the Church, IV, c, 3 l.c.



437) CT 27; cf. Synod 1985, II B, a, 1.



438) DV 9.



439) Cf. MPD 9.






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