Our Story

in his INAUGURATION to these Magisterial Summaries Mario Luigi Cardinal Ciappi, O.P.wrote:

“As a member of the Advisory Board, I congratulate George P. Morse, President, Gerard J. Marks, Vice President, and William E. May, theological advi­sor, on the publication of Precis of Official Catholic Teaching on Faith,Revelation, and the Bible, September, 1990.

The inseparable bond between the Bible, Tradition, and the Teaching Authority of the Church was again proclaimed in the Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation (Dei Verbum) on the Second Vatican Council. In Chapter II, n. 10, the Fathers of the Council declared:

“It is clear, therefore, that in the supremely wise arrangement of God, sacred Tradition, sacred Scripture, and the Magisterium of the Church are so connected and associated that one of them cannot stand without the others. Working together, each in its own way and under the action of the one Holy Spirit, they all contribute effectively to the salvation of souls.”

Admiring this same bond, so clearly set forth in our Precis, in the Second Vatican Council, and in the Letters of St. Paul, I repeat with the Apostle: “All that matters is that in any and every way…Christ is being pro­claimed! That is what brings me joy. Indeed, I shall continue to rejoice in the conviction that this will turn out to my salvation, thanks to your prayers….” (Phil. 1:18,19).

Mario Luigi Cardinal Ciappi, O.P.

Supremely Wise Arrangement of God

…so connected and associated that one of them cannot stand without the others…

Sacred Tradition

Sacred Tradition

Philosophorum Disputatione

Sacred Scripture

Sacred Scripture

Magisterium of the Church

Magisterium of the Church

General Congregation of the Council of Trent in Santa Maria Maggiore by Elia Naurizio, 1633.

Over hundreds of years, the Church, through its Magisterium, has issued documents of great importance to Catholic Faith and life. Many of these documents were promulgated by ecumenical councils of bish­ops throughout the world in union with the Pope. Others were issued by the Popes themselves in the form of Encyclicals, Apostolic Letters, Discourses and Addresses intended to instruct on specific matters of faith and morals. Other documents were issued by Roman Congrega­tions with the approval of the Popes. But, regardless of form, all these documents provide the authentic teaching of the Magisterium estab­lished by Christ to teach in His name the saving truths of the Catholic Faith.

Recognizing that, while the need for accurate information on the teach­ings of the Church is great, the volume of documentation is also enormous, CUSP has undertaken to make that teaching more readily available and usable for priests, seminarians and others who require ready access to the essential teachings found in these documents. It is our objective therefore to aid in providing direction and education to young clerics so that they may not only know, understand and teach the Word of God, but defend the books inspired by God.

We seek to increase the number of “resolute laborers in the vineyard of the Lord…. Let priests, having perused the sacred pages on their own, distribute the heavenly treasures of divine Word by sermons, homilies and exhorta­tions…. Priests cannot fulfill all this unless they have developed a practical and enduring love for Sacred Scripture in their seminary days.” (Cf. Divino Afflante Spiritu, Pius XII, September 30,1943).

Accordingly, CUSP has prepared summaries, or Pr6cis, of many of the major teaching documents of the Church and has organized these teach­ings by subject matter, or themes, into the following eleven categories:

  1. Faith, Revelation and the Bible
  2. Christ Our Lord, True God and True Man
  3. The Church
  4. Marriage, Family and Sexuality
  5. The Sanctity of Human Life
  6. The Social Teaching of the Church
  7. The Ordained Priesthood
  8. Worship and Sacraments
  9. The Christian Call to Personal Sanctification
  10. Catholic Education
  11. Marian Devotions and the Last Things

Each category consists of from 15 to 20 documents. Summaries of these documents will be published in individual books, corresponding with the eleven topics, and provided to persons who will benefit from their use as an aid to education, learning and teaching expertise

Initially, it was planned to publish only in English and to distribute the books to English-speaking countries. However, at the urging of our Curia advisers, and in response to the urgent need of the Church in Eastern Europe, Africa, Asia and elsewhere, CUSP en­deavuors to meet the need of the Church world-wide and to translate the books into as many languages as finances permit. The Summaries provide accurate accounts of the substantive teaching in each document. Scholars and others, particularly priests, are urged to consult the original documents for the purpose of serious study and reference. The summaries are intended to provide easy access to these crucially important documents of the Church’s Magisterium. Only by knowing what the Church teaches on matters of faith and morals can Catholics rightly and intelligently carry out their vocation to bring to the world the light of Christ’s truth and in this way fulfill their baptismal commitment to participate in the redemptive work of Christ.

The Revealed Doctrine

“I have been arguing, in respect to the revealed doctrine, given to us from above in Christianity, first, that, in consequence of its intellectual character,… it could not but grow or develop, as time went on, into a large theological system: — next, that, if development must be, then, whereas Religion is a heavenly gift,

He who gave it virtually has not given it, unless He has also secured it from perversion and corruption, in all such, or, in other words, that intellectual action through successive generations, which is the organ of development, must, so far forth as it can claim to have been put in charge of the Revelation, be in its determinations infallible “


John Henry Cardinal Newman

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