Having laid down the gauntlet (see my challenge to a duel/dialogue below) in which one of the rules are that, after nomination of a specific “new” official teaching of the Catholic Church which contradicts her earlier stated official teaching, I then rise to the challenge of demonstrating how the contradiction is only apparent and in fact it is a legitimate development according to Newman’s principles on the development of doctrine, I became aware that I had not actually stated what those princples were.
Here, thanks to Fr Richard John Neuhaus, is a good summary:
The Church’s teaching lives forward; it is not reconstructed backward-whether from the fifth century or the sixteenth or the nineteenth or the twenty-first. But through all the changes of living forward, how do we know what is corruption and what is authentic development? Recall Cardinal Newman’s reflection on the development of doctrine, a reflection that has been incorporated by magisterial teaching. He suggested seven marks of authentic development:
- authentic development preserves the Church’s apostolic form;
- it reflects continuity of principles in testing the unknown by the known;
- it demonstrates the power to assimilate what is true, even in what is posited against it;
- it follows a logical sequence;
- it anticipates future developments;
- it conserves past developments;
- and, throughout, it claims and demonstrates the vigor of teaching authority.
And thus it is, said St. Vincent of Lerins in the fifth century, that in authentic development of doctrine nothing presents itself in the Church’s old age that was not latent in her youth. Such was the truth discovered by Augustine, a truth “ever ancient, ever new.”