Monday, March 12, 2012

Sources of Roman Catholic Dogma

Allowing for Chris Castaldo’s tickiness about Protestant “misnomers” about “official (de fide) Catholic dogma”, here are some places where you can find “official” Roman Catholic dogma. Of course, none of these is perspicuous, all of them require much “interpretation” from some other “official” Roman Catholic source. But they’re a place to start.

Ludwig Ott: Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma, first written in 1950 and updated through 1974.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church. This isn’t the official Vatican Website version, but it’s much more easily searchable.

Denzinger:  the 1957 edition of Denzinger is available online here, but you’ll also see an abbreviation like “DS”, which means Denzinger-Schonmetzer, updated by Adolph Schönmetzer up to 1965. Interestingly, the editions from 1957 and earlier use one numbering scheme for its paragraphs, while post-1957 editions use a different one. Ott follows the first numbering scheme with his references, The CCC follows the second.

You may also see the name Jacques Dupuis, The Christian Faith: In the Doctrinal Documents of the Catholic Church. This edition contains much of what you’ll find in the most recent Denzinger; there is a cross-reference, but Dupuis seems to give more extensive citations and also some additional information. 

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