Compendium of Catechism Is Moving Along

Consultation of Cardinals and Episcopate Presidents Ends This Week

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VATICAN CITY, APRIL 27, 2004 ( The Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church is moving a step closer to completion.

Vatican spokesman Joaquín Navarro-Valls explained in a statement today that «on April 30 the consultation ends of all the cardinals and presidents of episcopal conferences on the project of the Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, prepared by the special commission of cardinals, assisted by the editorial committee.»

The commission will consider the contributions gathered. Navarro-Valls, director of the Vatican press office, said the compendium will be »written in the form of a dialogue, with questions followed by concise answers.»

«This literary genre was preferred, as it is considered better for reading, establishing an ideal dialogue between the text and the reader,» he added in a press note.

In February 2003, John Paul II addressed a letter to Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, entrusting the project to him.

The Pope said the compendium «should include, in a concise way, the essential and fundamental content of the faith of the Church, respecting its complete character and doctrinal integrity.»

The Holy Father hopes it will be a «vademecum which will enable people, whether believers or nonbelievers, to take in at a glance the complete view of the Catholic faith.»

The compendium «will have as constant source, model and point of reference the present Catechism of the Catholic Church,» which will preserve «its authority and importance,» and will be «a stimulus to reflect more deeply on» the Catechism «and, more generally, a further tool for education in the faith,» the Pontiff said.

Navarro-Valls said: «The project of the compendium, therefore, is an attempt to reflect with faithfulness the Catechism of the Catholic Church both in the structure and articulation of the contents, as well as in the language, and it must not be just any compendium of the Catholic faith, but a Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church.»

The Catechism is considered one of the most important documents of this pontificate.

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