The Belgian Contribution to the Second Vatican Council: International Research Conference at Mechelen, Leuven and Louvain-la-Neuve (September 12-16, 2005)

The present volume is the result of an international scholars conference held in 2005, studying the influence of the Belgian bishops and theologians at the Second Vatican Council. The book is subdivided in three main parts. A first part offers more general studies (both from a historical and a sociological point of view) into the way large assemblies function, and the way in which smaller groups are able to exercize influence on their outcome. The second part contains a number of studies devoted to the specific role and influence of the Belgian cardinal Leo Joseph Suenens at Vatican II, with particular emphasis on his contacts with other conciliar protagonists. Thirdly, the role of various theologians (Philips, Thils, Moeller, ...) and bishops (De Smedt, Calewaert, but also Belgian missionary bishops) is studied by an international team of specialists on the history of the Council.