GDC 7: A Necessary Revision

The Catechism, plus twenty years of catechetical work by the pope and bishops spurred a new edition of the original 1971 Directory:

7. The publication of the Catechism together with the aforementioned interventions of the Magisterium necessitated a revision of the General Catechetical Directory so as to adapt this valuable theologico-pastoral instrument to new situations and needs. It is in service of the entire Church that the Holy See now seeks to collate this heritage and to organize it systematically in order to make it available for catechetical purposes.

The work of revising the General Catechetical Directory undertaken by the Congregation for the Clergy, was conducted by a group of Bishops and experts in theology and catechesis. In the revision of the General Directory, its original inspiration and content were respected. Episcopal Conferences and several experts were consulted as were the principal catechetical institutes and centres.

In its present form the General Directory for Catechesis seeks to arrive at a balance between two principal requirements:

– on the one hand the contextualization of catechesis in evangelization as envisaged by Evangelii Nuntiandi;

– on the other the appropriation of the content of the faith as presented in the Catechism of the Catholic Church.


– Bishops and experts working together.

– That document cited in requirement number one is Pope Paul VI’s apostolic exhortation which followed the 1974 synod on evangelization.

Commentary has been quiet so far on the GDC. Anything you’re seeing so far in the document? Anything to suggest the institutional church has really been asleep at the wheel on catechesis? Or has it just all taken place, unfortunately, in your parish?

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
This entry was posted in General Directory for Catechesis, post-conciliar catechetical documents. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to GDC 7: A Necessary Revision

  1. Liam says:

    My impression is that the Catechism (I’ve never heard the Directory referred to in any real-life conversations) is more a crutch than a tool. It serves as a kind of low-rent theological Wiki for pastoral instruction.

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