Vatican

Vatican Council, Second

(1962–65) 21st ecumenical council of the Roman Catholic church, announced by Pope John XXIII. It has come to symbolize the church's readiness to acknowledge the circumstances of the modern world. Among the most notable of the 16 documents enacted were the “Dogmatic Constitution on the Church,” which treats church hierarchy and provides for greater involvement of laypeople in the church; the “Dogmatic Constitution of Divine Revelation,” which maintains an open attitude toward scholarly study of the Bible; the “Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy,” which provides for the use of vernacular languages in the mass in place of Latin; and the “Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the World of Today,” which acknowledges the profound changes humanity has experienced in the modern world and attempts to relate the church to contemporary culture. Observers from other Christian churches were invited to the council in a gesture of ecumenism.

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(1869–70) 20th ecumenical council of the Roman Catholic Church. It was convoked by Pope Pius IX (1846–78) to address the rising influence of rationalism, materialism, and liberalism. The council, which was never formally dissolved, promulgated two doctrinal constitutions: Dei filius, which deals with faith, reason, and their interrelations; and Pastor aeternus, which treats the authority of the pope. After long debate, the council approved the doctrine of papal infallibility. The council recessed in the summer of 1870 but was unable to reconvene because Italian troops had occupied Rome. Pius suspended the council indefinitely on Oct. 20, 1870.

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in full State of the Vatican City

Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc.Independent papal state, southern Europe, within the commune of Rome, Italy. Area: 109 acres (44 hectares). Population (2005 est.): 800. Its medieval and Renaissance walls form its boundaries except on the southeast at St. Peter's Square. Within the walls is the world's smallest independent nation-state, with its own diplomatic missions, newspaper, post office, radio station, banking system, army of 100 Swiss Guards, and publishing house. Extraterritoriality of the state extends to Castel Gandolfo and to several churches and palaces in Rome proper. Its independent sovereignty was recognized in the Lateran Treaty of 1929. The pope has absolute executive, legislative, and judicial powers within the city. He appoints the members of the Vatican's government organs, which are separate from those of the Holy See, the name given to the government of the Roman Catholic Church. The many imposing buildings include St. Peter's Basilica, the Vatican Palace, and the Vatican Museums. Frescoes by Michelangelo in the Sistine Chapel, by Pinturicchio in the Borgia Apartment, and by Raphael in the Stanze (rooms in the papal apartments) are also there. The Vatican Library contains a priceless collection of manuscripts from the pre-Christian and Christian eras. The pope and other representatives of the papal state travel widely to maintain international relations.

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(1962–65) 21st ecumenical council of the Roman Catholic church, announced by Pope John XXIII. It has come to symbolize the church's readiness to acknowledge the circumstances of the modern world. Among the most notable of the 16 documents enacted were the “Dogmatic Constitution on the Church,” which treats church hierarchy and provides for greater involvement of laypeople in the church; the “Dogmatic Constitution of Divine Revelation,” which maintains an open attitude toward scholarly study of the Bible; the “Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy,” which provides for the use of vernacular languages in the mass in place of Latin; and the “Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the World of Today,” which acknowledges the profound changes humanity has experienced in the modern world and attempts to relate the church to contemporary culture. Observers from other Christian churches were invited to the council in a gesture of ecumenism.

Learn more about Vatican Council, Second with a free trial on Britannica.com.

(1869–70) 20th ecumenical council of the Roman Catholic Church. It was convoked by Pope Pius IX (1846–78) to address the rising influence of rationalism, materialism, and liberalism. The council, which was never formally dissolved, promulgated two doctrinal constitutions: Dei filius, which deals with faith, reason, and their interrelations; and Pastor aeternus, which treats the authority of the pope. After long debate, the council approved the doctrine of papal infallibility. The council recessed in the summer of 1870 but was unable to reconvene because Italian troops had occupied Rome. Pius suspended the council indefinitely on Oct. 20, 1870.

Learn more about Vatican Council, First with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Vatican may refer to:

  • The Holy See, the central governing body of the Catholic Church, consisting of the Pope and the Roman Curia
  • The Roman Curia, the administrative apparatus of the Holy See
  • Vatican City, the sovereign state
  • Vatican Hill, a hill in Rome on the opposite side of the Tiber from the traditional seven hills of Rome
  • Apostolic Palace, the official residence of the Pope in Vatican City (sometimes referred to as the Vatican Palace)
  • St. Peter's Basilica, also known as the Vatican Basilica, the principal church within Vatican City

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