DAILY CATHOLIC   Monday, January 26, 1998   volume 9, no. 18



"If the Church has declared it, you can find it instantly at this unofficial site"

      A site we use often for reference is one we feature today as our Significant Site of the Week. Though the page is unofficial, what it offers is very official because the provide authentic documents on the Council of Trent, Second Vatican II, Encyclicals and other Papal Documents, US Bishops statements, the new Catechism of the Catholic Church , and a plethora of writings of Church Fathers, Saints, and Doctors of the Church. This site, simply called Documents of the Roman Catholic Church found at http://listserv.american.edu/catholic/church/church.html, borrows liberally from numerous sources and sites, but it puts it all together to provide "one-stop shopping" for every Encyclical, Apostolic Letter, document, etc. since the sixteenth century with Pope Boniface VIII through Pope John Paul II for the Encyclicals. Each encyclical and papal writing can be acquired instantly since there are so few graphics, with pictures of the respective Popes and their coats of arms, saints, etc. in some instances as the only graphics. There are no graphics on the Encyclical pages. There are nearly 150 encyclicals and writings, some quite lengthy. Pope Pius XII tops the list with forty but Pope John Paul II has already surpassed that since this site lists his latest writing as of January 1996. That is the only set-back to this site. It's not up-to-date. In fact, to our knowledge it hasn't been updated for quite some time. But it does provide the serious student of the Popes, Saints, Doctors of the Church, etc. and their writings with the necessary documents. A good example of this is we checked out Pope Paul VI's encyclical Mysterium Fidei on the Eucharist at both this site and the official Vatican II site. On the stop-watch we were able to download the encyclical at this site in six seconds. Then we tried it at the official Vatican site and it took over four minutes to get to the same Encyclical. That can make a big difference if one is searching numerous documents. Because of the speed and thoroughness, we hereby give the "Golden Chalice Award", to this site, conferring THREE Hail Mary's . It would have been more Ave Maria's if this site had been more up-to-date.

January 1998