Friday, December 17, 2010

The Guadalajara FSSP Apostolate: Now Raised to 'Quasi-Parish'



Tuesday, December 07, 2010

'The Fundamental Truth of Christian Philosophy': The Identity of Existence and Essence in God

Part One: The Text

From the young St. Thomas' book, On Being and Essence, ch. 4:

[Argument for the Real Distinction, in Angels, between Essence and Existence.] Although substances of this kind [i.e., 'separate substances', or angels] are form alone and are without matter, they are nevertheless not in every way simple, and they are not pure act; rather, they have an admixture of potency, and this can be seen as follows. Whatever is not in the concept of the essence or the quiddity comes from beyond the essence and makes a composition with the essence, because no essence can be understood without the things that are its parts. But every essence or quiddity can be understood without understanding anything about its existence: I can understand what a man is or what a phoenix is and nevertheless not know whether either has existence in reality. Therefore, it is clear that existence is something other than the essence or quiddity...

[Argument for the Possibility of Only One Being Whose Essence and Existence are Identical.] ... [U]nless perhaps there is something whose quiddity is its very own existence, and this thing must be one and primary. For, there can be no plurification of something except by the addition of some difference, as the nature of a genus is multiplied in its species; or as, since the form is received in diverse matters, the nature of the species is multiplied in diverse individuals; or again as when one thing is absolute and another is received in something else, as if there were a certain separate heat that was other than unseparated heat by reason of its own separation. But if we posit a thing that is existence only, such that it is subsisting existence itself, this existence will not receive the addition of a difference, for, if there were added a difference, there would be not only existence but existence and also beyond this some form; much less would such a thing receive the addition of matter, for then the thing would be not subsisting existence but material existence. Hence, it remains that a thing that is its own existence cannot be other than one, and so in every other thing, the thing's existence is one thing, and its essence or quiddity or nature or form is another. In the intelligences, therefore, there is existence beyond the form, and so we say that an intelligence is form and existence.

[Argument for a Being Whose Essence and Existence are Identical, i.e., God.]  Everything that pertains to a thing, however, either is caused by the principles of its own nature, as risibility in man, or else comes from some extrinsic principle, as light in the air from the influence of the sun. Now, it cannot be that existence itself is caused by the very form or quiddity of the thing (I mean as by an efficient cause), because then the thing would be its own efficient cause, and the thing would produce itself in existence, which is impossible. Therefore, everything the existence of which is other than its own nature has existence from another. And since everything that is through another is reduced to that which is through itself as to a first cause, there is something that is the cause of existing in all things in that this thing is existence only. Otherwise, we would have to go to infinity in causes, for everything that is not existence alone has a cause of its existence, as said above. It is clear, therefore, that the intelligences are form and existence and have existence from the first being, which is existence alone, and this is the first cause, which is God.

(See Part Two

Monday, December 06, 2010

Parmenides' Argument against Motion, and the Aristotelian Reply -- In Scholastic Format

Taken from a scholastic disputation from my Natural Science course:

Thesis: “Motion (i.e., change) is impossible”

The Parmenidean Argument:

Major: Motion is a passage from being to non-being and vice-versa.
Minor: But non-being is impossible.
Conclusion: Therefore, motion is impossible.

In support of the premises:
Major: This is posited as the definition of motion.
Minor: Non-being cannot exist, by definition. Therefore, the passage to or from non-being is impossible.

The Aristotelian-Scholastic Reply:

I distinguish the major: that motion is a passage from being secundum quid to non-being secundum quid and vice-versa, I concede; but that motion is a passage from being simpliciter to non-being simpliciter and vice-versa, I deny. Explanation: Motion is a passage from potential being to actual being. Something in potency is being simpliciter and non-being secundum quid: that it to say, something that is in potency is in the fundamental sense of having existence, but it is not in a secondary respect, insofar as it is not yet this or that, it is not such and such. When this thing that is in potency is moved to act, it receives a new modification that it lacked before (or loses what it had before), all the while remaining in existence. Motion does not involve the existence of non-existence, but the modification of what is in existence throughout the motion. This is true not only of accidental change, but also, in its own way, of substantial change (absolute generation and corruption).

I contradistinguish the minor: that the existence of non-being simpliciter is impossible, I concede; but that the existence of non-being secundum quid is impossible, I deny. Explanation: It is certainly impossible for a substance both to exist and not to exist at the same time--this is the primary meaning of the principle of non-contradiction. But it is not impossible for a substance or subject (e.g., matter) to lack a certain form, and hence to be non-being in a certain respect; the latter is a being simpliciter, but is non-being secundum quid, i.e., insofar as it is (exists), but is not such and such.

And I deny the conclusion.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

"Lord, that I may suffer, and be disesteemed for thy sake" - St. John of the Cross

Share/Bookmark From Matins of the Feast of St. John of the Cross, Confessor and Doctor

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

Medina del Campo, Spain
Joánnes a Cruce, Fontíberi in Hispánia piis paréntibus natus, a primis annis certo innótuit quam Deíparæ Vírgini futúrus esset accéptus ; nam quinquénnis, in púteum lapsus, ejúsdem Deíparæ manu sublátus, incólumis evásit.  Tanto autem patiéndi desidério flagrávit, ut novénnis, spreto mollióri lecto, super sarméntis cubáre consuéverit.  Adoléscens hospítio páuperum ægrotántium Metymnæ Campi fámulum sese addíxit, quibus magno caritátis ardóre, vilíssima quæque compléctens offícia, præsto áderat.  Cujus exémplo excitáti céteri, éadem caritátis múnera ardéntius obíbant.  Verum, ad altióra vocátus, beátæ Maríæ Vírginis de Monte Carmélo institútum ampléxus est ; ubi, sacérdos ex obediéntia factus, severióris disciplínæ et arctióris vitæ cupidíssimus, primitívam órdinis régulam ex superióris licéntia ita proféssus est, ut, ob jugem Domínicæ passiónis memóriam, bello in se, tamquam in infensíssimum hostem indícto, vigíliis, jejúniis, férreis flagéllis omníque pœnárum génere, brevi carnem cum vítiis et concupiscéntiis suis crucifíxerit ; dignus plane, qui a sancta Terésia inter purióres sanctiorésque ánimas, Ecclésiam Dei id témporis illustrántes, recenserétur.
John of the Cross was born of godly parents at Fontiveros, in Spain.  It began soon to appear that he was foreordained to be an acceptable servant unto the Virgin Mother of God.  At five years of age he fell into a well, but the hand of the Mother of God took him up, and saved him from all hurt.  So burning was his desire to suffer that when he was nine years old he gave up any softer bed, and used to lie on potsherds.  In his youth he devoted himself as a servant in the hospital for the sick poor at Medina del Campo, and embraced with eager charity, the meanest offices there, his readiness likewise exciting others to imitate him.  He obeyed the call to higher things, and entered the Order of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel, wherein, by command of his Superiors, he received Priest's Orders.  By their leave and his own strong desire for the sternest discipline and the strictest life, he adopted the primitive Rule.  Full of the memory of what our Lord suffered, he declared war against himself as his own worst enemy, and carried it on by depriving himself of sleep and food, by iron chains, by whips, and by every kind of self-torture.  And in a little while he had crucified the flesh, with the affections and lusts thereof.  he was indeed worthy that holy Teresa should say of him that he was one of the purest and holiest souls by whom God was then enlightening his 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.  Honéstum fecit illum Dóminus, et custodívit eum ab inimícis, et a seductóribus tutávit illum : * Et dedit illi claritátem ætérnam.V.  Justum dedúxit Dóminus per vias rectas, et osténdit illi regnum Dei.
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 guided the righteous in right paths, and shewed him the kingdom of God.
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
Singulári vitæ austeritáte et ómnium virtútum præsídio munítus, præ assídua rerum divinárum contemplatióne, diutúrnas et mirábiles éxtases frequénter patiebátur ; tantóque in Deum æstuábat amóre, ut, cum divínus ignis sese intro diútius continére non posset, foras erúmpere ejúsque vultum irradiáre visus sit.  Proximórum salúti summópere inténtus, tum in verbi Dei prædicatióne, tum in sacramentórum administratióne fuit assíduus.  Hinc tot méritis auctus, strictiorísque disciplínæ promovéndæ ardóre veheménter accénsus, sanctæ Terésiæ comes divínitus datus est, ut, quam ipsa inter soróres primævam Carméli órdinis observántiam instauráverat, eámdem et inter fratres, Joánne adjutóre, restitúeret.  Innúmeros ítaque una cum Dei fámula in divíno ópere promovéndo perpéssus labóres, cœnóbia, quæ ejúsdem sanctæ Vírginis cura per totam Hispániam erécta fúerant, nullis vitæ incómmodis et perículis térritus, síngula perlustrávit.  In quibus aliísque quam plúrimis, ejus ópera eréctis, restaurátam observántiam propagándo, verbo et exémplo firmávit ; ut mérito primus, post sanctam Terésiam, Carmelitárum excalceatórum órdinis proféssor et parens habeátur.
The strange hardness of his life, and the might of his graces, joined to the unceasing concentration of his mind on God, had the effect of oftentimes subjecting him to daily and extraordinary trances.  So burning was his love of God that the fire sometimes could not not be kept bound within, and brake forth, so that his face shone.  The salvation of his neighbours was one of his dearest longings, and he was unwearied in preaching the Word of God, and in administering the Sacraments.  As strong in so many good works, and glowing with zeal to make discipline harder, he was given by God to be an helpmeet to holy Teresa, and he aided her to set up again the primitive observance among the brethren of the Order of Mount Carmel, as she had already done among the sisters.  In doing God's work, he and God's handmaid together went through toils that cannot be numbered.  No discomforts of dangers held him back from going throughout all Spain to visit all and each of the convents which the care of that holy Virgin had founded, and in them, and in very many others erected by her means for spreading the renewed observance, he strengthened it by his word and ensample.  He is indeed worthy to be reckoned second only to the holy Teresa as a professor and founder of the Order of the Discalced Carmelites.
V.  Tu autem, Dómine, miserére nobis.
R.  Deo grátias.
V.  But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us.
R.  Thanks be to God.
R.  Amávit eum Dóminus, et ornávit eum : stolam glóriæ índuit eum, * Et ad portas paradísi coronávit eum.V.  Induit eum Dóminus lorícam fídei, et ornávit eum.
R.  Et ad portas paradísi coronávit eum.
R.  The Lord loved him and adorned him; he clothed him with a robe of glory : * And crowned him at the gates of Paradise.V.  The Lord hath put on him the breast-plate of faith, and hath adorned him.
R.  And crowned him at the gates of Paradise.

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
Virginitátem perpétuo cóluit, impudentésque mulíeres ejus pudicítiæ insidiári conántes, non modo répulit, sed étiam Christo lucrifécit.  In divínis explicándis arcánis æque ac sancta Terésia, apostólicæ Sedis judício, divínitus instrúctus, libros de mystica theología, cælésti sapiéntia refértos, conscrípsit.  Semel interrogátus a Christo quid præmii pro tot labóribus pósceret, respóndit : Dómine, pati et contémni pro te.  Império in dæmones, quos e corpóribus sæpe fugábat, discretióne spirítuum, prophetíæ dono, miraculórum glória celebratíssimus, ea semper fuit humilitáte, ut sæpius a Dómino flagitáverit eo loco mori, ubi ómnibus esset ignótus.  Voti compos factus.  Ubédæ, diro morbo et in crure quinque plagis sánie manántibus, ad impléndum patiéndi desidérium constantíssime tolerátis, Ecclésiæ sacraméntis pie sanctéque suscéptis, in Christi crucifíxi ampléxu, quem semper in corde atque ore habúerat, post illa verba : In manus tuas comméndo spíritum meum, obdormívit in Dómino, die et hora a se prædíctis, anno salútis millésimo quingentésimo nonagésimo primo, ætátis quadragésimo nono.  Migrántem ejus ánimam splendidíssimus ignis globus excépit ; corpus vero suavíssimum odórem spirávit, quod, etiámnum incorrúptum, Segóviæ honorífice cólitur.  Eum, plúrimis ante et post óbitum fúlgentem signis, Benedíctus décimus tértius Póntifex máximus in Sanctórum númerum rétulit, et Pius undécimus ex Sacrórum Rítuum Congregatiónis consúlto, universális Ecclésiæ Doctórem declarávit.
He remained throughout all his life a clean maid, and when some shameless woman tried to beguile his modesty, he not only foiled them, but gained them for Christ.  In the judgment of the Apostolic See he was as much taught of God as was holy Teresa, for explaining God's hidden mysteries, and he wrote books of mystical theology filled with heavenly wisdom.  Christ once asked him what reward he would have for so much work ; whereto he answered : Lord, that I may suffer, and be disesteemed for thy sake.  He was very famous for his power over devils, whom he oftentimes scared out of men's bodies, for discerning of spirits, for the gift of prophecy, and for eminent miracles.  He was extraordinarily lowly, and oftentimes entreated of the Lord that he might die in some place where he was unknown.  In accordance with his prayer, he was sent to Ubeda.  To crown his love of suffering, he bore uncomplainingly five open sores in his leg, running with water.  In the year 1591, in the forty-ninth year of his age, being the day, and at the hour foretold by himself, after having in godly and holy wise received the Sacraments of the Church, hugging the image of that crucified Saviour of whom his heart and his mouth had been used to be full, he uttered the words : Into thy hands I commend my spirit, and fell asleep in the Lord.  As his soul passed away it was received into a glorious cloud of fire.  His body yielded a right sweet savour, and is still uncorrupt where it lieth, held in great honour, at Segovia.  He was famous for very many miracles, both before and since his death, and Pope Benedict XIII numbered his name among those of the Saints.  Pius XI, after consultation with the Congregation of Sacred Rites, declared him a doctor of 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.

Segovia Cathedral, Spain
R.  Iste homo perfécit ómnia quæ locútus est ei Deus, et dixit ad eum : Ingrédere in réquiem meam : * Quia te vidi justum coram me ex ómnibus géntibus.
V.  Iste est, qui contémpsit vitam mundi, et pervénit ad cæléstia regna.
R.  Quia te vidi justum coram me ex ómnibus géntibus.
V.  Glória Patri, et Fílio, et Spirítui Sancto.
R.  Quia te vidi justum coram me ex ómnibus géntibus.
R.  This is he which did according to all that God commanded him ; and God said unto him : Enter thou into my rest : * For thee have I seen righteous before me among all people.V.  This is he which despised his life in this world, and is come unto an everlasting kingdom.
R.  For thee have I seen righteous before me among all people.V.  Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost.
R.  For thee have I seen righteous before me among all people.



Monday, November 22, 2010

Pope Benedict's Equivocal Position on Judaism (Revised)


The Church and the Synagogue
Quaeritur: Would you care to possibly comment on this other excerpt about the Jews from the book The Light of the World.

Respondeo: This is a better example than the condom comment of a point in which "[i]t goes without saying that the Pope can have private opinions that are wrong," as the Holy Father himself admits in his book.  The theologically objectionable point is the claim that the traditional Good Friday prayer for the conversion of the Jews was erroneous because he realized the profound unity of the Old and New Testaments:

"... in such a way that one did not pray directly for the conversion of the Jews in a missionary sense."

The rest seems to amount to an unclear and rather circumlocutious pair of premises that are somehow being offered as support for the above conclusion.  The argument contains little discernible propositional content by way of premises; it rather expresses a theologically misguided desire for ecumenism. (A desire cannot be false in the strict sense, just misguided or disordered.)  But one can perhaps boil all that down to the proposition that there is a natural unity between Judaism and Christianity.  This seems to be the hidden premise of the argument that he uses to get to the conclusion, i.e., the quote above.   Thus, what the Pope offers us is an enthymeme (an implied syllogism), which we can reformulate into an explicit syllogism:

Major Premise: If there is a natural continuity between Judaism and Christianity, then we must not pray for the Jews' conversion in a 'missionary sense' --i.e., that they change from a false religion to the one, true religion.
Minor Premise: There is a natural continuity between Judaism and Christianity.
Conclusion: Therefore, we must not pray for the Jews' conversion in a 'missionary sense' (as the Old Missal does), but for the perfection of their religion (as the New Missal and Pope Benedict's 'proclamation of the Christian faith' does).

For the sake of precision, allow me to express my refutation of his reasoning as a scholastic distinction:

I concede the major.  It is a statement of the self-evident proposition that one cannot convert from religion to religion b if, in the ultimate analysis, a = b.  Conversion (in the 'missionary sense') involves changing religions that are essentially distinct.

I distinguish the minor (i.e., this premise is true in one sense, but false in another).  That there is a natural continuity between pre-Christian Judaism and Christianity, I concede; but that there is a natural continuity between modern Judaism and Christianity, I deny. The Holy Father's reasoning is faulty insofar as it does not take into account this important distinction. Pre-Christian Judaism, i.e., the religion of the Old Testament, is essentially the same religion as Christianity, the religion of the New Testament: Christianity is the perfection of pre-Christian Judaism. Pre-Christian Judaism prefigures Christianity; Christianity perfects Pre-Christian Judaism--every bit as much as the Old Testament prefigures the New, and the New perfects the Old.

But post-Christian Judaism, and I specifically mean the religion of the Jewish race after the destruction of the Temple, is a new religion distinct from the religion of the Old Testament. Judaism, in other words, underwent a sort of substantial change at that point. Not only was it redefined due to the impossibility of observing the Old Law (no Temple, no sacrifice, no Judaism); but also a new, anti-Christian element came into the definition of this new religion. The core of Jewish belief is no longer merely the awaiting of a Messias, but also the belief that Jesus of Nazareth is NOT that Messias. As a consequence, a modern Jew who thinks that Jesus IS the Messias is not considered a Jew by the Jews themselves. This shows that modern, i.e., post-Christian Judaism and Christianity are not continuous.

In short, pre-Christian Judaism is pro-Christianity, whereas modern Judaism is anti-Christian.

I distinguish the conclusion: That therefore, we must not pray for the pre-Christians Jews' conversion, I concede; but that we must not pray for the modern Jews' conversion, I deny.  Given the distinction of the minor that I made above, the conclusion can only be true in the sense that we don't pray for the conversion of pre-Christian Jews.  But they're all dead, so that's obviously not what the Pope means.  In the other sense, the sense in which the Holy Father means it--that modern Jews cannot convert from their religion to Christianity, and the Old Missal is incorrect in praying for that intention--in this sense the conclusion is false.  

The fact that the argument's conclusion is false can be stated positively: modern Judaism is a false religion and modern Jews, therefore, have the obligation to abandon their errors and accept the true religion revealed by God through Jesus Christ and the Church; consequently, the traditional liturgy does right in praying for their conversion: 

Let us pray also for the perfidious Jews: that almighty God may remove the veil from their hearts; so that they too may acknowledge Jesus Christ our Lord. 
Almighty and eternal God, who dost not exclude from thy mercy even Jewish perfidy: hear our prayers, which we offer for the blindness of that people; that acknowledging the light of thy Truth, which is Christ, they may be delivered from their darkness. Through the same our Lord Jesus Christ, who liveth and reigneth with thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen.

Caritas non nisi in veritate.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Ven. Pius XII on the Old and New Liturgical Movements

From Ven. Pope Pius XII's Encyclical Mediator Dei
In the 63rd Anniversary of the Encyclical 

4. You are of course familiar with the fact, Venerable Brethren, that a remarkably widespread revival of scholarly interest in the sacred liturgy took place towards the end of the last century and has continued through the early years of this one. The movement owed its rise to commendable private initiative and more particularly to the zealous and persistent labor of several monasteries within the distinguished Order of Saint Benedict. Thus there developed in this field among many European nations, and in lands beyond the seas as well, a rivalry as welcome as it was productive of results. Indeed, the salutary fruits of this rivalry among the scholars were plain for all to see, both in the sphere of the sacred sciences, where the liturgical rites of the Western and Eastern Church were made the object of extensive research and profound study, and in the spiritual life of considerable numbers of individual Christians.

5. The majestic ceremonies of the sacrifice of the altar became better known, understood and appreciated. With more widespread and more frequent reception of the sacraments, with the beauty of the liturgical prayers more fully savored, the worship of the Eucharist came to be regarded for what it really is: the fountain-head of genuine Christian devotion. Bolder relief was given likewise to the fact that all the faithful make up a single and very compact body with Christ for its Head, and that the Christian community is in duty bound to participate in the liturgical rites according to their station.

6. You are surely well aware that this Apostolic See has always made careful provision for the schooling of the people committed to its charge in the correct spirit and practice of the liturgy; and that it has been no less careful to insist that the sacred rites should be performed with due external dignity. In this connection We ourselves, in the course of our traditional address to the Lenten preachers of this gracious city of Rome in 1943, urged them warmly to exhort their respective hearers to more faithful participation in the eucharistic sacrifice. Only a short while previously, with the design of rendering the prayers of the liturgy more correctly understood and their truth and unction more easy to perceive, We arranged to have the Book of Psalms, which forms such an important part of these prayers in the Catholic Church, translated again into Latin from their original text.[8]

7. But while We derive no little satisfaction from the wholesome results of the movement just described, duty obliges Us to give serious attention to this "revival" as it is advocated in some quarters, and to take proper steps to preserve it at the outset from excess or outright perversion.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Garrigou-Lagrange on the Kingship of Christ

Share/Bookmark "The Universal Kingship of Our Lord Jesus Christ"

 to French article:  Reginald Garrigou-
Lagrange, O.P. "La Royauté universelle de Notre-Seigneur Jésus-Christ," La Vie Spirituelle,  73 (1925), 5-21.

Lex Orandi, Lex Credendi: The Social Kingship of Christ

Share/Bookmark Feast of Christ the King (Last Sunday of October), Hymns
Online Source:

Ad Vesperas
At Vespers

Te sæculórum Príncipem,
Te, Christe, Regem Géntium,
Te méntium te córdium
Unum fatémur árbitrum.

Lord of the ages evermore,
Each nation's King, the wide world o'er,
O Christ, our only Judge thou art,
And Searcher of the mind and heart.

Scelésta turba clámitat :
Regnáre Christum nólumus :
Te nos ovántes ómnium
Regem suprémum dícimus.

Through Sin with rebel voice maintain,
We will not have this Christ to reign,
Far other, Lord, shall be our cry,
Who hail thee King of kings most High.

O Christe, Princeps Pácifer,
Mentes rebélles súbjice:
Tuóque amóre dévios,
Ovíle in unum cóngrega.

O thou eternal Prince of peace,
Subdue man's pride, bid error cease,
Permit not sin to wax o'er-bold,
The strayed bring home within the fold.

Ad hoc cruénta ab árbore
Pendes apértis bráchiis,
Diráque fossum cúspide
Cor igne flagrans éxhibes.

For this thou hangedst on the Tree
With arms outstretched in loving plea;
For this thou shewedst forth thy Heart,
On fire with love, pierced by the dart.

Ad hoc in aris ábderis
Vini dapísque imágine,
Fundens salútem fíliis
Transverberáto péctore.

And yet that wounded side sheds grace
Forth from the altar's holy place,
Where, veiled 'neath humblest bread and wine,
Abides for man the life divine.

Te natiónum Præsides
Honóre tollant público,
Colant magístri, júdices,
Leges et artes éxprimant.

Earth's noblest rulers to thee raise
Their homage due of public praise;
Teachers and judges thee confess;
Art, science, law, thy truth express.

Submíssa regum fúlgeant
Tibi dicáta insígnia:
Mitíque sceptro pátriam
Domósque subde cívium.

Let kings be fain to dedicate
To thee the emblems of their state;
Rule thou each nation from above,
Rule o'er the people's homes in love.

Jesu tibi sit glória,
Qui sceptra mundi témperas,
Cum Patre, et almo Spíritu,
In sempitérna sæcula. Amen.

All praise, King Jesu, be to thee,
The Lord of all in majesty;
Whom with the Father we adore,
And Holy Ghost for evermore. Amen.

Ad Laudes
At Lauds

Vexílla Christus ínclyta
Late triúmphans éxplicat :
Gentes adéste súpplices,
Regíque regum pláudite.

See now the Christ, in triumph high,
Unfurl his standard to the sky!
Ye nations, fall before his feet;
The King of kings with homage greet.

Non Ille regna cládibus :
Non vi metúque súbdidit
Alto levátus stípite,
Amóre traxit ómnia.

The kingdoms that he claims as Lord
He quelled not by grim fear or sword,
But rather, on the Cross raised high,
He would on love alone rely.

O ter beáta cívitas
Cui rite Christus ímperat,
Quæ jussa pergit éxsequi
Edícta mundo cælitus !

That civic state, how trebly blest,
Where Christ bears rule by man confessed;
There edicts of high heaven run;
There upon earth God's will is done.

Non arma flagrant ímpia,
Pax usque firmat fœdera,
Arrídet et concórdia,
Tutus stat ordo cívicus.

No civil strife can kindle there;
Good will prevails, and peace most fair;
There concord smiles 'twixt man and man;
Firm stands life's wise and ordered plan.

Servat fides connúbia,
Juvénta pubet íntegra,
Pudíca florent límina
Domésticis virtútibus.

There wedlock firm in hallowed troth,
And youth with sweet unsullied growth,
Make every home the dwelling place
Of every pure and modest grace.

Optáta nobis spléndeat
Lux ista, Rex dulcíssime :
Te, pace adépta cándida,
Adóret orbis súbditus.

May this thy light, for which we pine,
Sweet King of love, upon us shine;
And all the earth, in holy peace,
From thy glad praises never cease.

Jesu tibi sit glória,
Qui sceptra mundi témperas,
Cum Patre, et almo Spíritu,
In sempitérna sæcula. Amen.

All praise, King Jesu, be to thee,
The Lord of all in majesty;
Whom with the Father we adore,
And Holy Ghost for evermore. Amen.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Garrigou-Lagrange Colloquium in Oxford

Link to announcement.

Friday, October 08, 2010

Who are the Traditional Thomists?

From Garrigou-Lagrange, OP - Reality (available from ITOPL).

Chapter 3: The Thomistic Commentators

We deal here with those commentators only who belong to the Thomistic school properly so called. We do not include eclectic commentators, who indeed borrow largely from Thomas, but seek to unite him with Duns Scotus, refuting at times one by the other, at the risk of nearly always oscillating between the two, without ever taking a definite stand.

In the history of commentators we may distinguish three periods. During the first period we find defensiones against the various adversaries of Thomistic doctrine. In the second period commentaries appear properly so called. They comment the Summa theologiae. They comment, article by article, in the methods we may call classical, followed generally before the Council of Trent. In the third period, after the Council, in order to meet a new fashion of opposition, the commentators generally no longer follow the letter of the Summa article by article, but write disputationes on the problems debated in their own times. Each of the three methods has its own raison d'etre. The Thomistic synthesis has thus been studied from varied viewpoints, by contrast with other theological systems. Let us see this process at work in each of these periods.

The first Thomists appear at the end of the thirteenth century and the beginning of the fourteenth. They defend St. Thomas against certain Augustinians of the ancient school, against the Nominalists and the Scotists. We must note in particular the works of Herve de Nedellec against Henry of Ghent; of Thomas Sutton against Scotus, of Durandus of Aurillac against Durandus of Saint-Pourcain and against the first Nominalists.

Next, in the same period, come works on a larger scale. Here we find John Capreolus, [89] whose Defensiones [90] earned him the title princeps thomistarum. Capreolus follows the order of the Lombard Sentences, but continually compares the commentaries of Thomas on that work with texts of the Summa theologiae and of the Disputed Questions. He writes against the Nominalists and the Scotists. Similar works were written in Hungary by Peter Niger, [91] in Spain by Diego of Deza, [92] the protector of Christopher Columbus. With the introduction of the Summa as textbook, explicit commentaries on the Summa theologiae began to appear. First in the field was Cajetan (Thomas de Vio). His commentary [93] is looked upon as the classic interpretation of St. Thomas. Then followed Conrad Kollin, [94] Sylvester de Ferraris, [95] and Francis of Vittoria. [96] Vittoria's work remained long in manuscript and was lately published. [97] A second work of Vittoria, Relectiones theologicae, was likewise recently published. [98].

Numerous Thomists took part in the preparatory work for the Council of Trent. Noted among these are Bartholomew of Carranza, Dominic Soto, Melchior Cano, Peter de Soto. The Council [99] itself, in its decrees on the mode of preparation for justification, reproduces the substance of an article by St. Thomas. [100] Further, in the following chapter on the causes of justification, the Council again reproduces the teaching of the saint. [101] When on April 11 1567, four years after the end of the Council, Thomas of Aquin was declared doctor of the Church, Pius V, [102] in commending the saint's doctrine as destruction of all heresies since the thirteenth century, concluded with these words: "As clearly appeared recently in the sacred decrees of the Council of Trent." [103].

After the Council of Trent, the commentators, as a rule, write Disputationes. Dominic Banez, an exception, explains still article by article. The chief names in this period are Bartholomew of Medina, [104] and Dominic Banez. [105] We must also mention Thomas of Lemos 1629): Diego Alvarez (1635): John of St. Thomas (1644): Peter of Godoy (1677). All these were Spaniards. In Italy we find Vincent Gotti (1742): Daniel Concina (1756): Vincent Patuzzi (1762): Salvatore Roselli (1785). In France, Jean Nicolai (1663): Vincent Contenson (1674): Vincent Baron (1674): John Baptist Gonet (1681): A. Goudin (1695): Antonin Massoulie (1706): Hyacinth Serry (1738). In Belgium, Charles Rene Billuart (1751). Among the Carmelites we mention: the Complutenses, Cursus philosophicus, [106] and the Salmanticenses, Cursus theologicus. [107].

Let us here note the method and importance of the greatest among these commentators. Capreolus [108] correlates, as we saw above, the Summa and the Disputed Questions with the Sententiae of the Lombard. Answering the Nominalists and the Scotists, he sets in relief the continuity of the saint's thought.

Sylvester de Ferraris shows that the content of the Contra Gentes is in harmony with the higher simplicity of the Summa theologiae. He is especially valuable on certain great questions: the natural desire to see God [109]: the infallibility of the decrees of providence; [110] the immutability in good and in evil of the soul after death, from the first moment of its separation from the body. [111] Sylvester's commentary is reprinted in the Leonine edition of the Summa contra Gentes.

Cajetan comments on the Summa theologiae article by article, shows their interconnection, sets in relief the force of each proof, disengages the probative medium. Then he examines at length the objections of his adversaries, particularly those of Durandus and Scotus. His virtuosity as a logician is in the service of intuition. Cajetan's sense of mystery is great. Instances will occur later on when he speaks of the pre-eminence of the Deity. Cajetan is likewise the great defender of the distinction between essence and existence. [112] His commentary on the Summa theologiae was reprinted in the Leonine edition. [113].

Dominic Banez is a careful commentator, profound, sober, with great powers, logical and metaphysical. Attempts have been made to turn him into the founder of a new theological school. But, in reality, his doctrine does not differ from that of St. Thomas. What he adds are but more precise terms, to exclude false interpretations. His formulas do not exaggerate the saint's doctrine. Even such terms as "predefinition" and "predetermination" had been employed by Aquinas in explaining the divine decrees. [114] A Thomist may prefer the more simple and sober terms which St. Thomas ordinarily employs, but on condition that he understands them well and excludes those false interpretations which Banez had to exclude. [115].

John of St. Thomas wrote a very valuable Cursus philosophicus thomisticus. [116] Subsequent authors of philosophic manuals, E. Hugon, O. P.: J. Gredt, O. S. B.: X. Maquart, rest largely on him. J. Maritain likewise finds in them much inspiration. In John's theological work, Cursus theologicus, [117] we find disputationes on the great questions debated at his time. He compares the teaching of St. Thomas with that of others, especially with that of Suarez, of Vasquez, of Molina. John is an intuitionist, even a contemplative, rather than a dialectician. At the risk of diffusiveness, he returns often to the same idea, to sound its depths and irradiations. He may sound repetitious, but this continual recourse to the same principles, to these high leitmotifs, serves well to lift the penetrating spirit to the heights of doctrine. John insists repeatedly on the following doctrines: analogy of being, real distinction between essence and existence, obediential potency, divine liberty, intrinsic efficaciousness of divine decrees and of grace, specification of habits and acts by their formal object, the essential supernaturalness of infused virtue, the gifts of the Holy Spirit and infused contemplation. John should be studied also on the following questions: the personality of Christ, Christ's grace of union, Christ's habitual grace, the causality of the sacraments, the transubstantiation, and the sacrifice of the Mass.

In their methods the Carmelites of Salamanca, the Salmanticenses, resemble John of St. Thomas. They first give, in summary, the letter of the article, then add disputationes and dubia on controverted questions, discussing opposed views in detail. Some of these dubia on secondary questions may seem superfluous. But he who consults the Salmanticenses on fundamental questions must recognize in them great theologians, in general very loyal to the teaching of St. Thomas. You may test this statement in the following list of subjects: the divine attributes, the natural desire to see God, the obediential potency, the absolute supernaturalness of the beatific vision, the intrinsic efficaciousness of divine decrees and of grace, the essential supernaturalness of infused virtues, particularly of the theological virtues, the personality of Christ, His liberty, the value, intrinsically infinite, of His merits and satisfaction, the causality of the sacraments, the essence of the sacrifice of the Mass.

Gonet, who recapitulates the best of his predecessors, but also, on many questions, does original work, is marked by great clarity. So likewise is Cardinal Gotti, who gives a wider attention to positive theology. Billuart, more briefly than Gonet, gives a substantial summary of the great commentators. He is generally quite faithful to Thomas, often quoting in full the saint's own words.

While we do not cite in detail the works of contemporary Thomists, we must mention N. del Prado's two works: De veritate fundamentali philosophiae christianae, [118] and De Gratia et libero arbitrio. [119] He closely follows Banez. Further, A. Gardeil's three works: La credibilite et l'apologetique, [120] Le donne revele et la theologie, [121] and La structure de l'ame et l'experience mystique. [122] Inspired chiefly by John of St. Thomas, his work is still personal and original.

Among those who contributed to the resurgence of Thomistic study, before and after Leo XIII, we must mention eight names: Sanseverino, Kleutgen, S. J.: Cornoldi, S. J.: Cardinal Zigliara, O. P.: Buonpensiere, O. P.: L. Billot, S. J.: G. Mattiussi, S. J.: and Cardinal Mercier.


89. Died 1444

90. Latest edition, Tours, 1900-1908

91. Died 1481

92. Died 1523

93. Written 1507-22

94. On the Ia IIae, Cologne, 1512

95. On the Cont. Gent.: Venice, 1534

96. On the IIa IIae. He died in 1546

97. At Salamanca, 1932-35

98. At Madrid, 1933-35

99. Sess. VI, chap. 6.

100. IIIa, q. 85, a. 5.

101. Ia IIae, q. 112, a. 4; IIa IIae, q. 24, a. 3.

102. Et liquido nuper in sacris concilii Tridentini decretis apparuit.

103. Bull. ord. praed.: V, 155.

104. On the Ia IIae, Salamanca, 1577, and on the IIIa, Salamanca, 1578.

105. On the Ia, Salamanca, 1584-88 (recently reprinted, Valencia, 1934); on the IIa IIae, Salamanca, 1584-94; and on the IIIa (still in manuscript).

106. Published 1640-42

107. Published 1631, 1637, 1641 (new ed.: Paris, 1871).

108. Defensiones (latest edition, Tours, 1900-1908).

109. Bk. III, chap. 51.

110. Ibid.: chap. 94.

111. Bk IV, chap. 95. Note here some differences between him and Cajetan.

112. De entia et essentia; De analogia nominum. Noteworthy too are his opuscula on the sacrifice of the Mass.

113. Rome, 1888-1906.

114. De divinis nominibus, chap. 5, lect. 3. Quodl. XII, a. 3, 4: Commentary on St. John's Gospel (2: 4; 7: 30; 13: 1; 17: 1)

115. Cf. Dict. theol. cath.: s. v. Banez.

116. Re-edited at Paris, 1883; and recently again, by Beatus Reiser, O. S. B.: Turin, 1930-37.

117. Re-edited at Paris, 1883-86. The Benedictines of Solesmes are now again re-editing the work.

118. Fribourg, 1911.

119. Fribourg, three volumes, 1907.

120. 1908 and 1912.

121. 1910.

122. Two volumes, 1927.