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Class 11 : Trent, and Three S ons of Trent. Dr. Ann T. Orlando 14 February 2014. Rome in Later 16 th C. Center of Catholic Spiritual Power Combined with Spanish military might, world-wide reach “Stubborn” emphasis on (reformed) discipline and doctrine rejected by Protestants

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Class 11 trent and three s ons of trent

Class 11 : Trent, and Three Sons of Trent

Dr. Ann T. Orlando

14February 2014

Rome in later 16 th c
Rome in Later 16th C

  • Center of Catholic Spiritual Power

  • Combined with Spanish military might, world-wide reach

  • “Stubborn” emphasis on (reformed) discipline and doctrine rejected by Protestants

    • Sacraments

    • Tradition

    • Saints

    • Importance of Papacy

    • Art in service of religion: the Baroque

Catholic response council of trent
Catholic Response: Council of Trent

  • Called by Pope Paul III

  • Lengthy, intermittent (1545-1563)

    • Pope initially reluctant to call council because of bad experiences with councils (especially Council of Constance) in 15th C

    • Purpose was both to address reform of practice and to uphold Catholic doctrine

    • Developed in several sessions

  • Jesuits play a major theological role at Trent; encouraged explicit statement of Catholic doctrine in opposition to Protestant views

Politics behind council
Politics Behind Council

  • Charles V wanted control of Council; insisted that it occur in his territory, and control over bishops

  • Also, successors of Paul III, Julius III and Paul IV, not in favor of council

    • Limited control over French bishops

    • Not in favor of some reforms

  • Structure of Council in 25 Sessions scattered across 3 Periods

    • Period I (1545-1547)

    • Period II (1551-1552)

    • Period III (1562-1563)

First period 1545 1547 key results
First Period 1545-1547 Key Results

  • Includes Bull of Convocation, Sessions 1-10; Pope Paul III

  • Emphasis on Nicene Creed and Tradition

  • Definitive statement concerning books of NT and OT; Latin Vulgate declared adequate for doctrinal proofs

  • Number of sacraments fixed at 7

  • Justification: man cooperates with God’s grace

Second period 1551 1552
Second Period (1551-1552)

  • Includes Sessions 11-16; Pope Julius III

  • Degree on Eucharist that defined Real Presence;

    • Transubstantiation

  • Sacrament of Penance revised

Third period 1562 1563
Third Period (1562-1563)

  • Sessions 18-25; Pope Pius IV

  • Resolution that bishops should live in their diocese

  • Catechism of Trent

  • Revised missal and breviary

  • Mass as true sacrifice

  • Reform decrees on clerical behavior and revision of seminary rules

Key theological statements from trent
Key Theological Statements from Trent

  • Scripture and Tradition

  • Sacraments are effective through performance of sacramental action, “ex opereoperato”

  • Affirmed Mass as sacrifice and transubstantiation

  • Affirmed 7 sacraments

  • Good works together with faith brings about salvation

  • Affirmed indulgences and intercession of saints

Trent and seminaries
Trent and Seminaries

  • Recall that universities had been the primary locus for clerical training

    • By the 14th C, run by academics, not bishops

    • Included a broad cross-section of students

    • Emphasis increasingly on intellectual but not moral formation

    • By 16th C increasingly tied to monarchies

  • Trent Session 23 on Seminaries

    • Every bishop should establish a seminary in his diocese; the bishop is directly responsible for the seminary

    • Seminary dedicated to education of clergy

Seminarian formation
Seminarian Formation

  • Seminarians should wear clerical dress at all times

    • To keep always in mind that they are ecclesiastics

  • Seminarians should study a range of skills including

    • Biblical studies

    • Philosophy and theology

    • Homiletics, especially studying homilies of the Fathers

    • Practical skills such as accounting

  • Seminarians should develop a strong spiritual life

    • Daily Mass

    • Spiritual director and confessor

    • Attend to parish or diocesan assignments on feast days

St charles borromeo 1538 1584
St. Charles Borromeo (1538-1584)

  • From northern Italy, parents placed him in a monastery school as a young boy

  • Studied for priesthood at university in Pavia

  • Quickly rose to be Archbishop of Milan and Secretary of State

    • Charles was a key intermediary between Pius IV (Charles’ uncle) and the Council

    • Significantly contributed to Tridentine catechism

  • As Archbishop of Milan

    • Instituted the seminary directives from Trent

    • Encouraged lay spiritual formation

    • Beloved in Milan for having personally cared for sick during a plague

St robert bellarmine 1542 1621
St. Robert Bellarmine (1542-1621)

  • Born in Italy; attended schools run by Jesuits

  • Entered Jesuit order 1560

  • Writes De Controversiis 1576

    • Systematic work based on Council of Trent

  • As chief theologian in Curia, he was able to ensure degrees of Trent were implemented

  • Declared saint and doctor of Church in 1930

St francis de sales 1567 1622
St Francis de Sales (1567-1622)

  • Born in eastern France, educated by Jesuits

  • As a young man studying theology, was very concerned about predestination

    • In prayer before a statue of Mary, his fears were relieved

    • Decided to lead a celibate life

    • Over his father’s objection entered ecclesial life

  • As a priest he was known for the insight of his confessions, and the force of his preaching

  • He was named bishop of Geneva (in absentia) in 1602

    • Lived a very simple life as bishop

    • Great care for poor

    • Known for kindness

    • Along with St, Jean de Chantal founded Visitation sisters

    • Started catechetical programs for lay people

  • Died praying “God’s will be done; Jesus my God and my all”

  • Canonized 1665; declared doctor of Church 1877

Introduction to the devout life
Introduction to the Devout Life

  • Widely influential in his own time

  • Introduction was translated into every European language almost immediately

  • Why such an impact then (and now)

    • Written for layman (really woman)

    • Written in a spirit of understanding and gentleness with the human condition

  • Nothing really new, but repackaged in the light of Reformation and Trent

    • Emphasis on Confession

    • Emphasis on authority of Fathers

Impact of trent
Impact of Trent

  • Defined Catholicism in Early Modern World

    • Reiterated tradition

    • Defined Catholicism as opposed to Protestants

  • Gave the Church a unified teaching program against the Protestants

  • Made Jesuits the theologians of the Church at beginning of modern period

    • Note, Jesuits not tied to local bishops

  • Relation between Trent and Vatican II still being worked out

But theological debates on justification within church continue dominicans and jesuits
But Theological Debates On Justification Within Church Continue: Dominicans and Jesuits

  • A continuing discussion within the Church on grace and works

    • Dominicans of 16th, 17th C tended more toward grace; interested in universals

    • Jesuits toward works, interested in particulars

    • Congregatio de Auxiliis called by Clement VIII in 1598 to settle dispute

    • On the advice of St. Francis de Sales, in 1607 Pope Paul V degreed that the Jesuits could not call the Dominicans Calvinstis; nor were the Jesuits allowed to call the Dominicans Calvinists

  • In renewed sacrament of penance, Jesuit development of casuistry

    • De-emphasize universal moral principles

    • ‘Sinfulness’ dependent on particulars of the agent and his circumstances

  • In early 17th C Bishop of Ypres, Cornelius Jansenius (1583-1635) will write massive Augustinus published in 1640

    • Opposition to Jesuits (Molina in particular), but also some aspects of Dominican position

    • Strongly anti-Pelagian, but also questioned value of philosophy (Aristotelianism) to lead to the truths of faith

Assignments Continue: Dominicans and Jesuits

  • 1. Trent Decrees on Scripture, Sacraments, Justification, Indulgences in Bettenson ed. Documents of the Christian Church Third Edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999. 275-282.

  • 2. Francis De Sales Devout Life, Prayer, Preface and First Part of Introduction in Introduction to the Devout Life, available at