Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Pope St. Pius X on the Philosophy of St. Thomas

On the 96th Anniversary of Doctoris Angelici (29 June 1914)

Motu Proprio for Italy and the adjacent islands, to encourage the study of the philosophy of St. Thomas Aquinas in Catholic Schools.

No true Catholic has ever ventured to call in question the opinion of the Angelic Doctor that: The regulation of studies is the special concern of the authority of the Holy See by which the universal Church is governed and the need is met by the establishment of Universities (Opusc. Contra impugnantes Dei cultum et religionem, iii). We have already discharged this great duty of Our office elsewhere, and more particularly on the 1st September, 1910, when in the Letter Sacrorum Antistitum, addressed to all Bishops and Superiors of Religious Orders duly charged with the duty of educating young men for the priesthood, We counselled them in the first place as follows: "So far as studies are concerned, it is Our will and We hereby explicitly ordain that the Scholastic philosophy be considered as the basis of sacred studies. . . . And what is of capital importance in prescribing that Scholastic philosophy is to be followed, We have in mind particularly the philosophy which has been transmitted to us by St. Thomas Aquinas. It is Our desire that all the enactments of Our Predecessor in respect thereto be maintained in full force; and, where need be, We renew and confirm them and order them to be strictly observed by all concerned. Let Bishops urge and compel their observance in future in any Seminary in which they may have been neglected. The same injunction applies also to Superiors of Religious Orders."

Now because the word We used in the text of that letter recommending the philosophy of Aquinas was 'particularly,' and not 'exclusively,' certain persons persuaded themselves that they were acting in conformity to Our Will or at any rate not actively opposing it, in adopting indiscriminately and adhering to the philosophical opinions of any other Doctor of the School, even though such opinions were contrary to the principles of St. Thomas. They were greatly deceived. In recommending St. Thomas to Our subjects as supreme guide in the Scholastic philosophy, it goes without saying that Our intention was to be understood as referring above all to those principles upon which that philosophy is based as its foundation. For just as the opinion of certain ancients is to be rejected which maintains that it makes no difference to the truth of the Faith what any man thinks about the nature of creation, provided his opinions on the nature of God be sound, because error with regard to the nature of creation begets a false knowledge of God; so the principles of philosophy laid down by St. Thomas Aquinas are to be religiously and inviolably observed, because they are the means of acquiring such a knowledge of creation as is most congruent with the Faith (Contra Gentiles, II, 2, 3); of refuting all the errors of all the ages, and of enabling man to distinguish clearly what things are to be attributed to God and to God alone (ibid., iii; and Sum. Theol., 1, xii, 4: and liv, 1). They also marvellously illustrate the diversity and analogy between God and His works, a diversity and analogy admirably expressed by the Fourth Lateran Council as follows: "The resemblance between the Creator and the creature is such that their still greater dissimilarity cannot fail to be observed" (Decretalis iii, Damnamus ergo, etc. Cf. St. Thomas, Quaest, disp. De Scientia Dei, a. 11). --For the rest, the principles of St. Thomas, considered generally and as a whole, contain nothing but what the most eminent philosophers and doctors of the Church have discovered after prolonged reflection and discussion in regard to the particular reasons determining human knowledge, the nature of God and creation, the moral order and the ultimate end to be pursued in life.

St. Thomas perfected and augmented still further by the almost angelic quality of his intellect all this superb patrimony of wisdom which he inherited from his predecessors and applied it to prepare, illustrate and protect sacred doctrine in the minds of men (In Librum Boethii de Trinitate, quaest, ii, 3). Sound reason suggests that it would be foolish to neglect it and religion will not suffer it to be in any way attenuated. And rightly, because, if Catholic doctrine is once deprived of this strong bulwark, it is useless to seek the slightest assistance for its defence in a philosophy whose principles are either common to the errors of materialism, monism, pantheism, socialism and modernism, or certainly not opposed to such systems. The reason is that the capital theses in the philosophy of St. Thomas are not to be placed in the category of opinions capable of being debated one way or another, but are to be considered as the foundations upon which the whole science of natural and divine things is based; if such principles are once removed or in any way impaired, it must necessarily follow that students of the sacred sciences will ultimately fail to perceive so much as the meaning of the words in which the dogmas of divine revelation are proposed by the magistracy of the Church.

We therefore desired that all teachers of philosophy and sacred theology should be warned that if they deviated so much as a step, in metaphysics especially, from Aquinas, they exposed themselves to grave risk. --We now go further and solemnly declare that those who in their interpretations misrepresent or affect to despise the principles and major theses of his philosophy are not only not following St. Thomas but are even far astray from the saintly Doctor. If the doctrine of any writer or Saint has ever been approved by Us or Our Predecessors with such singular commendation and in such a way that to the commendation were added an invitation and order to propagate and defend it, it may easily be understood that it was commended to the extent that it agreed with the principles of Aquinas or was in no way opposed to them.

We have deemed it Our apostolic duty to make this declaration and order so that the clergy, both regular and secular, may clearly know Our will and mind in a matter of the gravest importance, and fulfil Our desire with the appropriate alacrity and diligence. Teachers of Christian philosophy and sacred theology will be particularly zealous in this respect, for they must bear in mind that they have not been entrusted with the duty of teaching in order to impart to their pupils whatever opinions they please, but to instruct them in the most approved doctrines of the Church.

As for sacred theology itself, it is Our desire that the study of it be always illuminated by the light of the philosophy before referred to, but in ordinary clerical seminaries, provided suitable teachers are available, there is no objection to the use of text books containing summaries of doctrines derived from the source of Aquinas. There is an ample supply of excellent works of the kind.

But for the more profound study of this science, as it ought to be studied in Universities and Colleges and in all Seminaries and institutions which are empowered to grant academic degrees, it is of the first importance that the old system of lecturing on the actual text of the Summa Theologica- which should never have been allowed to fall into disuse-- be revived; for the reason also that prelections on this book make it easier to understand and to illustrate the solemn decrees of the teaching Church and the acts passed in consequence. For ever since the happy death of the saintly Doctor, the Church has not held a single Council, but he has been present at it with the wealth of his doctrine. The experience of so many centuries has shown and every passing day more clearly proves the truth of the statement made by Our Predecessor John XXII: "He (Thomas Aquinas) enlightened the Church more than all the other Doctors together; a man can derive more profit from his books in one year than from a lifetime spent in pondering the philosophy of others" (Consistorial address of 1318). St. Pius V confirmed this opinion when he ordered the feast of St. Thomas as Doctor to be kept by the universal Church: "But inasmuch as, by the providence of Almighty God, the power and truth of the philosophy of the Angelic Doctor, ever since his enrolment amongst the citizens of Heaven, have confounded, refuted and routed many subsequent heresies, as was so often clearly seen in the past and was lately apparent in the sacred decrees of the Council of Trent, We order that the memory of the Doctor by whose valour the world is daily delivered from pestilential errors be cultivated more than ever before with feelings of pious and grateful devotion" (Bull Mirabilis Deus of the 11th April, 1567). To avoid recapitulating the many other resounding praises of Our Predecessors, We may adopt the following words of Benedict XIV as a summary of all the commendations bestowed upon the writings of Thomas Aquinas, more particularly the Summa Theologica: "Numerous Roman Pontiffs, Our Predecessors, have borne glorious testimony to his philosophy. We also, in the books which We have written on various topics, after by diligent examination perceiving and considering the mind of the Angelic Doctor, have always adhered and subscribed with joy and admiration to his philosophy, and candidly confess that whatever good is to be found in Our own Writings is in no way to be attributed to Us, but entirely to so eminent a teacher" (Acta Cap. Gen. O.P., vol IX, p. 196).

Therefore that "the philosophy of St. Thomas may flourish incorrupt and entire in schools, which is very dear to Our heart," and that "the system of teaching which is based upon the authority and judgement of the individual teacher" and therefore "has a changeable foundation whence many diverse and mutually conflicting opinions arise . . . not without great injury to Christian learning" (Leo XIII, Epist, Qui te of the 19th June, 1886) be abolished forever, it is Our will and We hereby order and command that teachers of sacred theology in Universities, Academies, Colleges, Seminaries and Institutions enjoying by apostolic indult the privilege of granting academic degrees and doctorates in philosophy, use the Summa Theologica of St. Thomas as the text of their prelections and comment upon it in the Latin tongue, and let them take particular care to inspire their pupils with a devotion for it.

Such is already the laudable custom of many Institutions. Such was the rule which the sagacious founders of Religious Orders, with the hearty approval of Our Predecessors, desired should be observed in their own houses of study; and the saintly men who came after the time of St. Thomas Aquinas took him and no other for their supreme teacher of philosophy. So also and not otherwise will theology recover its pristine glory and all sacred studies be restored to their order and value and the province of the intellect and reason flower again in a second spring.

In future, therefore, no power to grant academic degrees in sacred theology will be given to any institution unless Our present prescription is religiously observed therein. Institutions or Faculties of Orders and Regular Congregations, also, already in lawful possession of the power of conferring such academic degrees or similar diplomas, even within the limits of their own four walls, shall be deprived of such a privilege and be considered to have been so deprived if, after the lapse of three years, they shall not have religiously obeyed for any reason whatsoever, even beyond their control, this Our injunction.

This is Our Order, and nothing shall be suffered to gainsay it.

Given at Rome, at St. Peter's, on the 29th day of June, 1914, the eleventh year of Our Pontificate. Pius PP. X.

All Civil Authority Comes from Above

On the 129th Anniversary of Diuturnum Illud
From Pope Leo XIII's Encyclical on the Origin of Civil Government:

9. In truth, that the source of human power is in God the books of the Old Testament in very many places clearly establish. "By me kings reign . . . by me princes rule, and the mighty decree justice."(4) And in another place: "Give ear you that rule the people . . . for power is given you of the Lord and strength by the Most High."(5) The same thing is contained in the Book of Ecclesiasticus: "Over every nation he bath set a ruler."(6) These things, however, which they had learned of God, men were little by little untaught through heathen superstition, which even as it has corrupted the true aspect and often the very concept of things, so also it has corrupted the natural form and beauty of the chief power. Afterwards, when the Christian Gospel shed its light, vanity yielded to truth, and that noble and divine principle whence all authority flows began to shine forth. To the Roman governor, ostentatiously pretending that he had the power of releasing and of condemning, our Lord Jesus Christ answered: "Thou shouldst not have any power against me unless it were given thee from above."(7) And St. Augustine, in explaining this passage, says: "Let us learn what He said, which also He taught by His Apostle, that there is no power but from God."(8) The faithful voice of the Apostles, as an echo, repeats the doctrine and precepts of Jesus Christ. The teaching of Paul to the Romans, when subject to the authority of heathen princes, is lofty and full of gravity: "There is not power but from God," from which, as from its cause, he draws this conclusion: "The prince is the minister of God."(9)

10. The Fathers of the Church have taken great care to proclaim and propagate this very doctrine in which they had been instructed. "We do not attribute," says St. Augustine, "the power of giving government and empires to any but the true God."(10) On the same passage St. John Chrysostom says: "That there are kingdoms, and that some rule, while others are subject, and that none of these things is brought about by accident or rashly . . . is, I say, a work of divine wisdom."(11) The same truth is testified by St. Gregory the Great, saying: "We confess that power is given from above to emperors and kings."(12) Verily the holy doctors have undertaken to illustrate also the same precepts by the natural light of reason in such a way that they must appear to be altogether right and true, even to those who follow reason for their sole guide.

11. And, indeed, nature, or rather God who is the Author of nature, wills that man should live in a civil society; and this is clearly shown both by the faculty of language, the greatest medium of intercourse, and by numerous innate desires of the mind, and the many necessary things, and things of great importance, which men isolated cannot procure, but which they can procure when joined and associated with others. But now, a society can neither exist nor be conceived in which there is no one to govern the wills of individuals, in such a way as to make, as it were, one will out of many, and to impel them rightly and orderly to the common good; therefore, God has willed that in a civil society there should be some to rule the multitude. And this also is a powerful argument, that those by whose authority the State is administered must be able so to compel the citizens to obedience that it is clearly a sin in the latter not to obey. But no man has in himself or of himself the power of constraining the free will of others by fetters of authority of this kind. This power resides solely in God, the Creator and Legislator of all things; and it is necessary that those who exercise it should do it as having received it from God. "There is one lawgiver and judge, who is able to destroy and deliver."(13) And this is clearly seen in every kind of power. That that which resides in priests comes from God is so acknowledged that among all nations they are recognized as, and called, the ministers of God. In like manner, the authority of fathers of families preserves a certain impressed image and form of the authority which is in God, "of whom all paternity in heaven and earth is named."(14) But in this way different kinds of authority have between them wonderful resemblances, since, whatever there is of government and authority, its origin is derived from one and the same Creator and Lord of the world, who is God.

12. Those who believe civil society to have risen from the free consent of men, looking for the origin of its authority from the same source, say that each individual has given up something of his right,(15) and that voluntarily every person has put himself into the power of the one man in whose person the whole of those rights has been centered. But it is a great error not to see, what is manifest, that men, as they are not a nomad race, have been created, without their own free will, for a natural community of life. It is plain, moreover, that the pact which they allege is openly a falsehood and a fiction, and that it has no authority to confer on political power such great force, dignity, and firmness as the safety of the State and the common good of the citizens require. Then only will the government have all those ornaments and guarantees, when it is understood to emanate from God as its august and most sacred source.

13. And it is impossible that any should be found not only more true but even more advantageous than this opinion. For the authority of the rulers of a State, if it be a certain communication of divine power, will by that very reason immediately acquire a dignity greater than human - not, indeed, that impious and most absurd dignity sometimes desired by heathen emperors when affecting divine honors, but a true and solid one received by a certain divine gift and benefaction. Whence it will behoove citizens to submit themselves and to be obedient to rulers, as to God, not so much through fear of punishment as through respect for their majesty; nor for the sake of pleasing, but through conscience, as doing their duty. And by this means authority will remain far more firmly seated in its place. For the citizens, perceiving the force of this duty, would necessarily avoid dishonesty and contumacy, because they must be persuaded that they who resist State authority resist the divine will; that they who refuse honor to rulers refuse it to God Himself.

14. This doctrine the Apostle Paul particularly inculcated on the Romans; to whom he wrote with so great authority and weight on the reverence to be entertained toward the higher powers, that it seems nothing could be prescribed more weightily: "Let every soul be subject to higher powers, for there is no power but from God, and those that are, are ordained of God. Therefore he that resisteth the power resisteth the ordinance of God, and they that resist purchase to themselves damnation . . . wherefore be subject of necessity, not only for wrath, but also for conscience' sake."(16) And in agreement with this is the celebrated declaration of Peter, the Prince of the Apostles, on the same subject: "Be ye subject, therefore, to every human creature for God's sake; whether it be to the king as excelling, or to governors, as sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of the good, for so is the will of God."(17)

15. The one only reason which men have for not obeying is when anything is demanded of them which is openly repugnant to the natural or the divine law, for it is equally unlawful to command to do anything in which the law of nature or the will of God is violated. If, therefore, it should happen to any one to be compelled to prefer one or the other, viz., to disregard either the commands of God or those of rulers, he must obey Jesus Christ, who commands us to "give to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's,"(18) and must reply courageously after the example of the Apostles: "We ought to obey God rather than men."(19) And yet there is no reason why those who so behave themselves should be accused of refusing obedience; for, if the will of rulers is opposed to the will and the laws of God, they themselves exceed the bounds of their own power and pervert justice; nor can their authority then be valid, which, when there is no justice, is null.


4. Prov.8:15-16.
5. Wisd. 6:3-4. 
6. Ecclus. 7:14. 
7. John 19:11.
8. Tract. 116 in Joan., n. 5 (PL 35, 1942). 
9. Rom.13:1-4.
10. De civ., Dei, 5, 21 (PL 41, 167).
11. In Epist. ad Rom., Homil. 23, n. 1 (PG 60, 615). 
12. In Epist. lib. 11, epist. 61.
13. James 4:12. 
14. Eph. 3:15.
15. An allusion to the doctrine of "Social contract," developed by Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712-78). According to this doctrine, all political power comes to rulers from the people.
16. Rom. 13:1-2, 5. 
17. 1 Peter 2:13, 15. 
18. Matt. 22:21.
19. Acts 5:9.

The Great Encyclical Letters of Pope Leo Xiii, 1878-1903: Or a Light in the Heavens  The Popes Against Modern Errors: 16 Famous Papal Documents

Monday, June 28, 2010

In Festo Sancti Irenæi (Jun. 27), Acta

Share/Bookmark From Matins of the Feast of St. Irenaeus of Lyons, Bishop and Martyr
Online Source: www.breviary.net

Absolutio: Ipsíus píetas et misericórdia nos ádjuvet, qui cum Patre et Spíritu Sancto vivit et regnat in sæcula sæculórum.R.  Amen.
Absolution:  May his loving-kindness and mercy assist us.  Who, with the Father, and the Holy Ghost, liveth and reigneth, for ever and ever.
R.  Amen.
V.  Jube domne, (Dómine) benedícere.
V.  Vouchsafe, Reverend Father (O Lord), thy blessing.
Benedíctio 4: Deus Pater omnípotens sit nobis propítius et clemens.
R.  Amen.
Benediction 4:  May God the Father Almighty shew us his mercy and pity.
R.  Amen.
Lesson iv

St. Irenaeus and St. Polycarp
Irenæus, non longe ab urbe Smyrna in Asia proconsulári natus, jam inde a púero sese Polycárpo, Joánnis Evangelístæ discípulo eidémque epíscopo Smyrnæórum, tradíderat in disciplínam.  Hoc tam excellénti magístro, progréssus in doctrína præceptísque christiánæ religiónis insígnes fecit.  Polycárpo in cælum martyrii glória subláto, etsi erat Irenæus in sacris lítteris egrégie versátus, quod tamen incredíbili stúdio flagráret discéndi quæ dógmata depósiti loco custodiénda céteri accepíssent, quos Apóstoli institúerant ; horum quam pótuit plures convénit, quæque ab iísdem audívit, mémori mente ténuit, ea deínceps opportúne advérsus hæreses allatúrus, quas cum vidéret ingénti pópuli christiáni damno látius in dies manáre, diligénter copioséque reféllere cogitárat.  In Gállias inde proféctus, a Pothíno epíscopo présbyter est constitútus Ecclésiæ Lugdunénsis.  Quod munus sic laborándo in verbo et doctrína gessit, ut (téstibus sanctis Martyribus, qui, Marco Aurélio imperatóre, strénue pro vera pietáte certárant) æmulatórem sese præstíterit testaménti Christi.
Irenaeus was born in proconsular Asia, not far from the city of Smyrna.  There he had already as a boy entrusted himself to the teaching of Polycarp, disciple of John the Evangelist, and bishop of Smyrna.  Under such an excellent master, he made remarkable progress in learning and in the precepts of the Christian religion.  When Polycarp was taken up to heaven by a glorious martyrdom, although Irenaeus was eminently versed in sacred letters, nevertheless, he burned with an incredible zeal to learn what articles of belief the others who were instructed by the Apostles had received, to be preserved in the deposit of faith.  For this reason he brought together as many of those men as he could, and whatever things he heard from them, he carefully retained in his mind.  Thus he could advantageously bring them to bear in the future against those heresies, which he saw were being diffused more widely day by day to the great detriment of the Christian people, and he diligently planned thoroughly to confute them.  Then, having set out for Gaul, he was appointed as a priest of the church of Lyons by Pothinus the bishop.  And this office he discharged in such a manner, labouring both by word and by teaching, that (according to the testimony of the holy Martyrs who, when Marcus Aurélius was emperor, were engaged in a vigorous combat for the true religion) he distinguished himself as an imitator of the testament of Christ.
V.  Tu autem, Dómine, miserére nobis.
R.  Deo grátias.
V.  But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us.
R.  Thanks be to God.

R.  Honéstum fecit illum Dóminus, et custodívit eum ab inimícis, et a seductóribus tutávit illum: * Et dedit illi claritátem ætérnam.V.  Descendítque cum illo in fóveam, et in vínculis non derelíquit eum.
R.  Et dedit illi claritátem ætérnam.
R.  The Lord multiplied the fruit of his labours and defended him from his enemies, and kept him safe from those that lay in wait: * And gave him perpetual glory.
V.  The Lord went down with him into the pit, and left him not in bonds.
R.  And gave him perpetual glory.

V.  Jube domne, (Dómine) benedícere.
V.  Vouchsafe, Reverend Father (O Lord), thy blessing.
Benedíctio 5: Christus perpétuæ det nobis gáudia vitæ.R.  Amen.
Benediction 5: May Christ bestow upon us the joys of life eternal.
R.  Amen.
Lesson v

Lyons, with the Cathedral in the foreground and the Basilica of Fourvière on top of the hill
Cum Mártyres ipsi clerúsque Lugdunénsis de pace Ecclesiárum Asiæ, quam Montanistárum fáctio turbárat, sollíciti cum primis essent, Irenæum, cujus esse potíssimum habéndam ratiónem prædicábant, unum ómnium máxime delegérunt, quem Romam ad Eleuthérium Pontíficem mítterent rogátum, ut novis sectáriis auctoritáte Sedis Apostólicæ reprobátis, discordiárum causa tollerétur.  Jam Pothínus epíscopus, martyr decésserat : huic Irenæus cum successísset, tam felíciter munus óbiit episcopátus, ut sapiéntia, oratióne, exemplóque suo non modo brevi cives Lugdunénses omnes, sed multos étiam aliárum Gálliæ úrbium íncolas superstitiónem atque errórem abjecísse, dedísseque christiánæ milítiæ nómina víderit.  Intérea, cum de die celebrándi Paschátis orta esset conténtio, ac Victor, Románus Póntifex, Asiános epíscopos ab collégis réliquis fere ómnibus dissidéntes aut prohibuísset communióne sacrórum, aut prohibére minátus esset, eum Irenæus, sequéster pacis, decénter mónuit, exemplísque usus Pontíficum superiórum indúxit, ut ne tot Ecclésias ob ritum quem a majóribus accepísse se dícerent, avélli ab unitáte cathólica paterétur.
These very Martyrs, together with the clergy of Lyons, began to be anxious concerning the peace of the churches of Asia, which the faction of the Montanists had disturbed.  And so they selected Irenaeus, whose person they considered of the greatest importance, as the one before all others whom they should send to Rome to Pope Eleutherius to ask, that, with the condemnation of the new dissidents by the authority of the Apostolic See, the cause of the dissensions might be removed.  Already the bishop Pothinus had died a martyr and Irenaeus succeeded him.  He applied himself so well to the duties of a bishop, that in a short time he saw not only all the citizens of Lyons, but also many of the inhabitants of other cities in Gaul cast aside their superstitions and errors, and enroll themselves in the Christian army.  Meanwhile, a dispute had arisen concerning the date of the celebration of Easter.  As the bishops of Asia were disagreeing with nearly all their fellow-bishops, the Roman Pontiff Victor had cut them off from the communion of the faithful.  Irenaeus, however, who was zealous for peace, admonished him in a becoming manner, and urged, by examples of the practice of previous Pontiffs, that he should not suffer so many Churches to be cut off from Catholic unity, on account of a rite which they said they had received from their ancestors.
V.  Tu autem, Dómine, miserére nobis.
R.  Deo grátias.
V.  But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us.
R.  Thanks be to God.

Pope St. Victor I
R.  Desidérium ánimæ ejus tribuísti ei, Dómine, * Et  voluntáte labiórum ejus non fraudásti eum.V.  Quóniam prævenísti eum in benedictiónibus dulcédinis, posuísti in cápite ejus corónam de lápide pretióso.
R.  Et  voluntáte labiórum ejus non fraudásti eum.
R.  Thou hast given him, O Lord, his heart's desire, * And hast not denied him the request of his lips.V.  For thou hast prevented him with the blessings of goodness, and hast set a crown of pure gold upon his head.
R.  And hast not denied him the request of his lips.

V.  Jube domne, (Dómine) benedícere.
V.  Vouchsafe, Reverend Father (O Lord), thy blessing.
Benedíctio 6: Ignem sui amóris accéndat Deus in córdibus nostris.
R.  Amen.
Benediction 6: May God enkindle in our hearts the fire of his holy love.
R.  Amen.
Lesson vi
Multa scripsit, quæ Eusébius Cæsariénsis et sanctus Hierónymus mémorant, quorúmque pars magna intércidit injúria témporum.  Exstant ejus advérsus hæreses libri quinque, anno círciter centésimo octogésimo perscrípti, dum adhuc Eleuthérius rem christiánam públicam géreret.  In tértio libro vir Dei, ab iis edóctus quos auditóres constat fuísse Apostolórum, grave in primis atque præclárum de Romána Ecclésia, deque illíus episcopórum successióne, divínæ traditiónis fidéli, perpétua, certíssima custóde, testimónium dixit.  Atque ad hanc, dixit, Ecclésiam propter potiórem principalitátem necésse est omnem conveníre Ecclésiam, hoc est eos qui sunt úndique fidéles.  Postrémo una cum áliis prope innumerabílibus, quos ipse ad veram fidem frugémque perdúxerat, martyrio coronátus migrávit in cælum, anno salútis ducentésimo secúndo, quo témpore Septímius Sevérus Augústus eos omnes, qui constánter in colénda christiána religióne perstáre voluíssent, in summum cruciátum dari atque intérfici imperáverat.  Sancti Irenæi festum Benedíctus décimus quintus Póntifex máximus ad univérsam Ecclésiam exténdit.
He wrote many works, which are mentioned by Eusebius of Caesarea and by St. Jerome, a great part of which have perished through the ravages of time.  There are extant five books of his against heresies, written down about the year 180, while Eleutherius was still ruling the Christian commonwealth.  In the third book, the man of God, instructed by those who, it is certain, had been hearers of the Apostles, gives to the Roman Church and to the succession of her bishops a testimony surpassing all others in weight and brilliancy, when he calleth her the faithful, perpetual, and most assured guardian of divine tradition.  For he said, that with this Church it is necessary that the whole Church (that is, those in all places who are of the faithful) should agree, because of its more powerful preeminence.  At length with almost countless others, whom he had himself brought over to the true faith and its practice, being crowned with martyrdom he passed to heaven in the year of salvation 202.  At that time Septimius Severus Augustus had commanded that all those who wished to remain constantly steadfast in the practice of the Christian religion should be condemned to the most cruel torments and to death.  The supreme Pontiff Benedict XV extended the feast of St. Irenaeus to the universal Church.
V.  Tu autem, Dómine, miserére nobis.
R.  Deo grátias.
V.  But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us.
R.  Thanks be to God.

R.  Stola jucunditátis índuit eum Dóminus : * Et corónam pulchritúdinis pósuit super caput ejus.V.  Cibávit illum Dóminus pane vitæ et intelléctus : et aqua sapiéntiæ salutáris potávit illum.
R.  Et corónam pulchritúdinis pósuit super caput ejus.V.  Glória Patri, et Fílio, et Spirítui Sancto.
R.  Et corónam pulchritúdinis pósuit super caput ejus.
R.  The Lord hath put on him a robe of honour, * And hath put about his head a crown of joy.V.  With the bread of life and understanding the Lord hath fed him, and hath given him the water of wisdom to drink.
R.  And hath put about his head a crown of joy.V.  Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost.
R.  And hath put about his head a crown of joy.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

The Omission of Hell in the New Lectionary (6th Sunday of Ordinary Time)

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Dominica V post Pentecosten, Evangelium & Homilia

5th Sunday After Pentecost: Gospel and Homily

Continuation of the holy Gospel according to St. Matthew (5: 20-24).

At that time, Jesus said to His disciples: Except your justice abound more than that of the Scribes and Pharisees, you shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. You have heard that it was said to them of old: Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill, shall be in danger of the judgment. But I say to you, that whosoever is angry with his brother, shall be in danger of the judgment; and whosoever shall say to his brother: Raca, shall be in danger of the council; and whosoever shall say: Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire. If therefore thou offer thy gift at the altar, and there thou remember that thy brother hath anything against thee, leave there thy offering before the altar, and go first to be reconciled to thy brother; and then coming thou shalt offer thy gift.

Sequéntia sancti Evangélii secúndum Matthaéum (5: 20-24).

In illo témpore: Dixit Jesus discípulis suis: Nisi abundáverit justítia vestra plus quam scribárum et pharisaeórum, non intrábitis in regnum caelórum. Audístis, quia dictum est antiquis: Non occídes: qui autem occíderit, reus erit judício. Ego autem dico vobis: quia omnis, qui iráscitur fratri suo, reus erit judício. Qui autem díxerit fratri suo, raca: reus erit concílio. Qui autem díxerit, fátue: reus erit gehénnae ignis. Si ergo offers munus tuum ad altáre, et ibi recordátus fúeris, quia frater tuus habet áliquid advérsum te: relínque ibi munus tuum ante altáre, et vade prius reconciliári fratri tuo: et tunc véniens ófferes munus tuum.

᾿Οργὴ καὶ φόνος

20 λέγω γὰρ ὑμῖν ὅτι ἐὰν μὴ περισσεύσῃ ἡ δικαιοσύνη ὑμῶν πλεῖον τῶν γραμματέων καὶ Φαρισαίων, οὐ μὴ εἰσέλθητε εἰς τὴν βασιλείαν τῶν οὐρανῶν. 21 ᾿Ηκούσατε ὅτι ἐρρέθη τοῖς ἀρχαίοις, οὐ φονεύσεις· ὃς δ᾿ ἂν φονεύσῃ, ἔνοχος ἔσται τῇ κρίσει. 22 ᾿Εγὼ δὲ λέγω ὑμῖν ὅτι πᾶς ὁ ὀργιζόμενος τῷ ἀδελφῷ αὐτοῦ εἰκῆ ἔνοχος ἔσται τῇ κρίσει· ὃς δ᾿ ἂν εἴπῃ τῷ ἀδελφῷ αὐτοῦ ρακά, ἔνοχος ἔσται τῷ συνεδρίῳ· ὃς δ᾿ ἂν εἴπῃ μωρέ, ἔνοχος ἔσται εἰς τὴν γέενναν τοῦ πυρός. 23 ᾿Εὰν οὖν προσφέρῃς τὸ δῶρόν σου ἐπὶ τὸ θυσιαστήριον κἀκεῖ μνησθῇς ὅτι ὁ ἀδελφός σου ἔχει τι κατὰ σοῦ, 24 ἄφες ἐκεῖ τὸ δῶρόν σου ἔμπροσθεν τοῦ θυσιαστηρίου, καὶ ὕπαγε πρῶτον διαλλάγηθι τῷ ἀδελφῷ σου, καὶ τότε ἐλθὼν πρόσφερε τὸ δῶρόν σου.

From Matins of the Fifth Sunday After Pentecost
Online Source: www.breviary.net

Absolutio: A vínculis peccatórum nostrórum absólvat nos omnípotens et miséricors Dóminus.
R.  Amen.
Absolution:  May the Lord Almighty and merciful break the bonds of our sins and set us free.
R.  Amen.
V.  Jube domne, (Dómine) benedícere.
V.  Vouchsafe, Reverend Father (O Lord), thy blessing.
Benedíctio 7: Evangélica léctio sit nobis salus et protéctio.
R.  Amen.
Benediction 7:  May the Gospel's holy lection be our safeguard and protection.
R.  Amen.
Lesson vii
Léctio sancti Evangélii secúndum MatthæumThe Lesson is taken from the Holy Gospel according to Matthew
Chap. 5, 20-24
In illo témpore : Dixit Jesus discípulis suis : Nisi abundáverit justítia vestra plus quam scribárum et pharisæórum, non intrábitis in regnum cælórum.  Et réliqua.
At that time : Jesus said unto his disciples:  Unless your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the Scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.  And so on, and that which followeth.
Homilía sancti Augustíni EpíscopiA Homily by St. Augustine the Bishop
Liber 1 de Sermone Domini in monte, cap. 9
Justítia pharisæórum est, ut non occídant : justítia eórum, qui intratúri sunt in regnum cælórum, ut non irascántur sine causa.  Mínimum est ergo, non occídere ; et qui illud sólverit, mínimus vocábitur in regno cælórum.  Qui autem illud impléverit, ut non occídat, non contínuo magnus erit, et idóneus regno cælórum ; sed tamen ascéndit áliquem gradum : perficiétur autem, si nec irascátur sine causa ; quod si perfécerit, multo remótior erit ab homicídio.  Quaprópter qui docet ut non irascámur, non solvit legem ne occidámus, et in corde, dum non iráscimur, innocéntiam custodiámus.
The precept : Thou shalt not kill : is of the righteousness of the Pharisees ; the counsel : Thou shalt not be angry with thy brother without a cause : is of the righteousness of them which shall enter into the kingdom of heaven.  The least therefore is : Thou shalt not kill, and whosoever shall break this commandment, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven.  But whosoever shall do it, and not kill, he is not therefore great, and meet for the kingdom of heaven ; nevertheless, he hath risen a step ; but he will have gotten farther, if he be not angry with his brother without a cause, the which, if he do, he will be the farther off from manslaughter.  Wherefore, he that teacheth us that we are not to be angry without a cause, destroyeth not the law, Thou shalt not kill, but rather fulfilleth and increaseth it, making us not only to be free of the sin of outward killing, but also clean of anger within.
V.  Tu autem, Dómine, miserére nobis.
R.  Deo grátias.
V.  But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us.
R.  Thanks be to God.
R.  Peccávi super númerum arénæ maris, et multiplicáta sunt peccáta mea : et non sum dignus vidére altitúdinem cæli præ multitúdine iniquitátis meæ : quóniam irritávi iram tuam, * Et malum coram te feci.V.  Quóniam iniquitátem meam ego cognósco : et delíctum meum contra me est semper, quia tibi soli peccávi.
R.  Et malum coram te feci.
R.  I have sinned above the number of the sands of the sea ; yea, I am not worthy to look up toward heaven because of the  multitude of mine iniquities ; against thee only have I sinned ; *   And done this evil in thy sight.V.  I acknowledge my faults, and my sin is ever before me ; against thee only have I sinned.
R.  And done this evil in thy sight.

V.  Jube domne, (Dómine) benedícere.
V.  Vouchsafe, Reverend Father (O Lord), thy blessing.
Benedíctio 8: Divínum auxílium máneat semper nobíscum.
R.  Amen.
Benediction 8: May help divine be with us all, for ever abiding.
R.  Amen.
Lesson viii
Gradus ítaque sunt in istis peccátis : ut primo quisque irascátur, et eum motum retíneat corde concéptum.  Jam si extórserit vocem indignántis ipsa commótio, non significántem áliquid, sed illum ánimi motum ipsa eruptióne testántem, qua feriátur ille, cui iráscitur ; plus est útique, quam si surgens ira siléntio premerétur.  Si vero non solum vox indignántis audiátur, sed étiam verbum, quo jam certam ejus vituperatiónem, in quem profértur, desígnet et notet ; quis dúbitet, ámplius hoc esse, quam si solus indignatiónis sonus ederétur?
In sins of this kind there are divers steps.  The first is this, that when the swelling emotion of anger appeareth in a man's heart, he keepeth it.  Next, the inward disturbance wringeth forth words of indignation, not themselves meaning aught, but shewing the vexation of him who is provoked.  And this is something worse than anger kept covered under silence.  Next, this audible outburst of indignation may contain direct and open reviling of him who hath roused it.  And it cannot be doubted that this is something worse than an empty cry of anger.
V.  Tu autem, Dómine, miserére nobis.
R.  Deo grátias.
V.  But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us.
R.  Thanks be to God.
R.  Duo Séraphim clamábant alter ad álterum : * Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus Dóminus Deus Sábaoth : * Plena est omnis terra glória ejus.V.  Tres sunt qui testimónium dant in cælo : Pater, Verbum, et Spíritus Sanctus : et hi tres unum sunt.
R.  Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus Dóminus Deus Sábaoth.V.  Glória Patri, et Fílio, et Spirítui Sancto.
R.  Plena est omnis terra glória ejus.
R.  The two Seraphim did cry the One to the Other : * Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God of Hosts : *The whole earth is full of his glory.V.  For there are Three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost : and these Three are One.
R.  Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God of Hosts.V.  Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost.
R.  The whole earth is full of his glory.

V.  Jube domne, (Dómine) benedícere.
V.  Vouchsafe, Reverend Father (O Lord), thy blessing.
Benedíctio 9: Ad societátem cívium supernórum perdúcat nos Rex Angelórum.
R.  Amen.
Benediction 9: May the King of Angels give us fellowship with all the citizens of heaven.
R.  Amen.
Lesson ix
Vide nunc étiam tres reátus, judícii, concílii, et gehénnæ ignis.  Nam in judício adhuc defensióni datur locus.  In concílio autem, quamquam et judícium esse sóleat, tamen quia interésse áliquid hoc loco fatéri cogit ipsa distínctio, vidétur ad concílium pertinére senténtiæ prolátio ; quando non jam cum ipso reo ágitur, utrum damnándus sit ; sed inter se, qui júdicant, cónferunt quo supplício damnári opórteat, quem constat esse damnándum.  Gehénna vero ignis, nec damnatiónem habet dúbiam, sicut judícium, nec damnáti pœnam, sicut concílium : in gehénna quippe ignis, certa est damnátio, et pœna damnáti.
Behold here the three degrees of guilt open respectively to the judgment, to the council, and to hell-fire.  As long as it is a matter of the judgment, there is still place for defence.  In the council, albeit this also is in a sense a judgment, the sentence is pronounced, (so we may suppose,) not as the result of a trial whereat the accused is present, but as the result of a consultation among the judges, as to what punishment he is to receive because of his already established guilt.  When we get to hell-fire, there remaineth no longer any doubt about condemnation as in the judgment, and no longer any doubt about sentence, as in the council.  In hell-fire, the condemnation and the pain of him that is condemned are alike certain.
V.  Tu autem, Dómine, miserére nobis.
R.  Deo grátias.
V.  But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us.
R.  Thanks be to God.

Friday, June 25, 2010

1st Ecumenical Council of Lyons Blesses the Seventh Crusade

On the 765th Anniversary of the Opening of the First Council of Lyons
From the First Council of Lyons, 2nd SessionAfflicti corde (On the 7th Crusade):

Deeply sorrowful at the grievous dangers of the holy Land, but especially at those which have recently happened to the faithful settled there, we seek with all our heart to free it from the hands of the wicked. Thus with the approval of the sacred council, in order that the crusaders may prepare themselves, we lay it down that at an opportune time, to be made known to all the faithful by preachers and our special envoys, all who are ready to cross the sea should gather at suitable places for this purpose, so that they may proceed from there with the blessing of God and the apostolic see to the assistance of the holy Land. Priests and other clerics who will be in the christian army, both those under authority and prelates, shall diligently devote themselves to prayer and exhortation, teaching the crusaders by word and example to have the fear and love of God always before their eyes, so that they say or do nothing that might offend the majesty of the eternal king. If they ever fall into sin, let them quickly rise up again through true penitence. Let them he humble in heart and in body, keeping to moderation both in food and in dress, avoiding altogether dissensions and rivalries, and putting aside entirely any bitterness or envy, so that thus armed with spiritual and material weapons they may the more fearlessly fight against the enemies of the faith, relying not on their own power but rather trusting in the strength of God. Let nobles and the powerful in the army, and all who abound in riches, be led by the holy words of prelates so that, with their eyes fixed on the crucified one for whom they have taken up the badge of the cross, they may refrain from useless and unnecessary expenditure, especially in feasting and banquets, and let they give a share of their wealth to the support of those persons through whom the work of God may prosper; and on this account, according to the dispensation of the prelates themselves, they may be granted remission of their sins. We grant to the aforesaid clerics that they may receive the fruits of their benefices in full for three years, as if they were resident in the churches, and if necessary they may leave them in pledge for the same time.

To prevent this holy proposal being impeded or delayed, we strictly order all prelates of churches, each in his own locality, diligently to warn and induce those who have abandoned the cross to resume it, and them and others who have taken up the cross, and those who may still do so, to carry out their vows to the Lord. And if necessary they shall compel them to do this without any backsliding, by sentences of excommunication against their persons and of interdict on their lands, excepting only those persons who find themselves faced with an impediment of such a kind that their vow deservedly ought to be commuted or deferred in accordance with the directives of the apostolic see. In order that nothing connected with this business of Jesus Christ be omitted, we will and order patriarchs, archbishops, bishops, abbots and others who have the care of souls to preach the cross zealously to those entrusted to them. Let them beseech kings, dukes, princes, margraves, counts, barons and other magnates, as well as the communes of cities, vills and towns -- in the name of the Father, Son and holy Spirit, the one, only, true and eternal God -- that those who do not go in person to the aid of the holy Land should contribute, according to their means an appropriate number of fighting men together with their necessary expenses for three years, for the remission of their sins, in accordance with what has already been explained in general letters and will be explained below for still greater assurance. We wish to share in this remission not only those who contribute ships of their own but also those who are zealous enough to build them for this purpose. To those who refuse, if there happen to be any who are so ungrateful to our lord God, we firmly declare in the name of the apostle that they should know that they will have to answer to us for this on the last day of final judgment before the fearful judge. Let them consider beforehand, however, with what knowledge and with what security it was that they were able to confess before the only-begotten Son of God, Jesus Christ, to whom the Father gave all things into his hands, if in this business, which is as it were peculiarly his, they refuse to serve him who was crucified for sinners, by whose beneficence they are sustained and indeed by whose blood they have been redeemed.

We therefore decree, with the general approval of the council, that all clerics, both those under authority and prelates, shall give a twentieth of the revenues of their churches for a full three years to the aid of the holy Land, by means of the persons appointed by the apostolic see for this purpose; the only exceptions being certain religious who are rightly to be exempted from this taxation and likewise those persons who have taken or will take the cross and so will go in person. We and our brothers, cardinals of the holy Roman church, shall pay a full tenth. Let all know, moreover, that they are obliged to observe this faithfully under pain of excommunication, so that those who knowingly deceive in this matter shall incur the sentence of excommunication. Because it is right that those who persevere in the service of the heavenly ruler should in all justice enjoy special privilege, the crusaders shall therefore be exempt from taxes or levies and other burdens. We take their persons and goods under the protection of St Peter and ourself once they have taken up the cross. We ordain that they are to be protected by archbishops, bishops and all prelates of the church of God, and that protectors of their own are to be specially appointed for this purpose, so that their goods are to remain intact and undisturbed until they are known for certain to be dead or to have returned. If anyone dares to act contrary to this, let him be curbed by ecclesiastical censure.

If any of those setting out are bound by oath to pay interest, we ordain that their creditors shall be compelled by the same punishment to release them from their oath and to desist from exacting the interest; if any of the creditors does force them to pay the interest, we command that he be forced by similar punishment to restore it. We order that Jews be compelled by the secular power to remit interest, and that until they do so all intercourse shall be denied them by all Christ's faithful under pain of excommunication. Secular princes shall provide a suitable deferral for those who cannot now pay their debts to Jews, so that after they have undertaken the journey, and until there is certain knowledge of their death or of their return, they shall not incur the inconvenience of paying interest. The Jews shall be compelled to add to the capital, after they have deducted their necessary expenses, the revenues which they are meanwhile receiving from property held by them on security. For, such a benefit seems to entail not much loss, inasmuch as it postpones the repayment but does not cancel the debt. Prelates of churches who are negligent in showing justice to crusaders and their families should know that they will be severely punished. Furthermore, since corsairs and pirates greatly impede help for the holy Land, by capturing and plundering those who are travelling to and from it, we bind them and their principal helpers and supporters with the bond of excommunication. We forbid anyone, under threat of anathema, knowingly to communicate with them by contracting to buy or to sell; and we order rulers of cities and their territories to restrain and curb such persons from this iniquity. Otherwise, since to be unwilling to disquiet evildoers is none other than to encourage them, and since he who fails to oppose a manifest crime is not without a touch of secret complicity, it is our wish and command that prelates of churches exercise ecclesiastical severity against their persons and lands. We excommunicate and anathematise, moreover, those false and impious Christians who, in opposition to Christ and the christian people, convey arms and iron and timber for galleys; and we decree that those who sell them galleys or ships, and those who act as pilots in pirate Saracen ships, or give them any help or advice by way of machines or anything else, to the detriment of the holy Land, are to be punished with deprivation of their possessions and are to become the slaves of those who capture them. We order this sentence to be renewed publicly on Sundays and feast-days in all maritime towns; and the bosom of the church is not to be opened to such persons unless they send in aid of the holy Land all that they received from this damnable commerce and the same amount of their own, so that they are punished in proportion to their sins. If perchance they do not pay, they are to be punished in other ways in order that through their punishment others may be deterred from venturing upon similar rash actions. In addition, we prohibit and on pain of anathema forbid all Christians, for four years, to send or take their ships across to the lands of the Saracens who dwell in the east, so that by this a greater supply of shipping may be made ready for those wanting to cross over to help the holy Land, and so that the aforesaid Saracens may be deprived of the not inconsiderable help which they have been accustomed to receiving from this.

Although tournaments have been forbidden in a general way on pain of a fixed penalty at various councils, we strictly forbid them to be held for three years, under pain of excommunication, because the business of the crusade is much hindered by them at this present time. Because it is of the utmost necessity for the carrying out of this business that rulers and christian peoples keep peace with each other, we therefore ordain, on the advice of this holy and general synod, that peace be generally kept in the whole christian world for four years, so that those in conflict shall be brought by the prelates of churches to conclude a definitive peace or to observe inviolably a firm truce. Those who refuse to comply shall be most strictly compelled to do so by an excommunication against their persons and an interdict on their lands, unless the malice of the wrongdoers is so great that they ought not to enjoy peace. If it happens that they make light of the church's censure, they may deservedly fear that the secular power will be invoked by ecclesiastical authority against them, as disturbers of the business of him who was crucified.

We therefore, trusting in the mercy of almighty God and in the authority of the blessed apostles Peter and Paul, do grant, by the power of binding and loosing that God has conferred upon us, albeit unworthy, unto all those who undertake this work in person and at their own expense, full pardon for their sins about which they are heartily contrite and have spoken in confession, and we promise them an increase of eternal life at the recompensing of the just. To those who do not go there in person but send suitable men at their own expense, according to their means and status, and likewise to those who go in person but at others' expense, we grant full pardon for their sins. We grant to share in this remission, according to the amount of their help and the intensity of their devotion, all who shall contribute suitably from their goods to the aid of the said Land or who give useful advice and help regarding the above. Finally, this holy and general synod imparts the benefit of its prayers and blessings to all who piously set out on this enterprise in order that it may contribute worthily to their salvation.