The Schism of the
From the book "History of the Church" by N. Talberg.
Translated from Russian by Seraphim Larin.
Missionary activity of the Latins. Papacy and Monasticism. Papal Conflict With Emperors. Decline of Papal Power. Attempts to Curb Papal Authority.Church’s Secession in the West.
Reasons that Prepared the Separation of the Churches. Beginning of the Separation. Final Separation of the Churches in the 11th Century. Heresies and Sects in the West. Theological Directions in the West. New Dogmas in the Roman Church. Sects in the Roman Church in the 11th—15th Centuries.Reformation.
General Dissatisfaction with the Roman Church. Reform Movements in Germany. Lutheranism.Roman-Catholic Church Politics.
Guarding of Orthodox Faithful from Roman Propaganda. Latin Endeavors to Secure Holy Places in Palestine. New Papal Endeavors in Favor of Unionism. Interrelationship of Papacy and Catholic Governments. Religious Directions in the Roman Church. New Dogmas in the Roman Church. The Old-Catholics.Addendum: The Jesuits.
Introduction. History of the Jesuits. Conclusion.
Missionary activity of the Latins.
The missionary activity of the Roman church in the 11-15th centuries took on a character that is not proper for a Christian. The peaceful path of spreading Evangelical teachings by means of sermons and persuasion was forsaken. During the conversion of the unbelievers, the Roman church was more willing to allow the use of forceful measures — fire and sword. It was also not backward in sending her missionaries into those countries, where Orthodox missionaries were active, forcing them out and converting the newly Christened Orthodox faithful to the Latin faith. At the same time, they were also attempting to spread their teachings among the established Orthodox faithful, trying to convert them to their faith.
The following methods were employed to spread Christianity throughout Europe: 1) A number of crusades of the cross to convert the Baltic Slavs (Wends); 2) Converting Prussians through force of arms — initially by the order of Prussian knights, and then by the order of German knights; 3) affirming Christianity, which had been established in the 12th century, by sword and flame of the sword-wielders in Livonia, Courland and Estonia, and 4) making Latvia into a Christian state through the marriage of the Latvian prince Yagailo with the successor to the Polish throne, princess Yadviga. Heathen Latvians were baptized through force, while Orthodox Latvians were subject to persecution.
In Asia, the Latinos organized a variety of missions. They conducted propaganda among the Orthodox faithful, and endeavored to convert Muslims and heathens. They had no success among the Orthodox and the Muslims, and while they did establish a Christian congregation in the 13th century among the heathens (Mongols in China), it disappeared without a trace in the middle of the 14th century. After the discovery of new lands in western Africa and subsequently America, the Portuguese and Spaniards brought Christianity to these conquered lands. As a result of their brutal methods of converting the indigenous peoples, Christianity spread very feebly.
Papacy and Monasticism.
Papal struggles with Emperors for independence in church affairs.
The papal authority that was placed on such an elevated position by Nicholas I (858-867), fell significantly in the 10th and mid 11th centuries. This came about as a result of the Italian authorities’ interference in papal affairs, and because of the moral dissipation and inactivity of the Popes and clergy.
In mid 11th century, control of the papal throne was relinquished by the Italian Rulers into the hands of the German Emperor Henry III (1039-56) — from the Finnish dynasty — who restored the Emperor’s authority in Italy. As a consequence of the papal iniquities in those times (one of them sold his papacy for a large sum of money to a wealthy Roman), there arose a movement demanding the reform of the clergy. It soon found itself zealous champions and disseminators in the form of monks from the French monastery of Cluny (in Burgundy). The Clunytians preached that the clergy should reject their secular interests and worldly lifestyles. This applied especially to the Popes. Henry III was in sympathy with the Clunytians, inasmuch as it was aimed against simony and disorder in the church. Henry appointed three Popes, while the Clunytian movement aimed at freeing the church from the influence of secular authorities. A fervent champion of this concept was a monk named Hildebrand, who was made a cardinal by Pope Leo IX (1049-54) and then administered all the papal affairs for the next 20 years. At the outset, Hildebrand with the aid of some skilful politics removed the Emperor’s influence over the papacy. Son of a Tuscany peasant, Hildebrand was first the Pope’s personal chaplain, having spent some time in Cluny. Returning to Rome and supporting reforms, he occupied a prominent position, adroitly defending the independence of the papal authority. After the death of Leo IX, with changes in the papal seat of power, he acted so skillfully that the selection of the Pope, was made without any reference to the Emperor’s court — as though by chance and not by design. True, it was soon that the juvenile Henry IV (1056-1106) became Emperor. Through Hildebrand’s suggestion, he appointed Nicholas II, who decided to openly remove the Emperor’s influence in electing Popes.…
In 1059, he decreed at the Lateran council that the election of Popes belongs to the College of Cardinals bishops from Roman districts, priests from major churches and several deacons attached to the Pope and his cathedral. The rest of the clergy and people had to show only their concurrence. With regards to the Emperor, he could confirm the election to the extent of the right given to him by the apostolic throne. Roman nobility was dissatisfied with being relegated to a secondary position. They asked Henry IV to take advantage of the right to appoint Popes, just as his father had done. However, Hildebrand elected his own candidate, Alexander II (1061-73). After his death, Hildebrand decided to take up the throne himself, and after being elected by the cardinals, assumed it under the name of Gregory VII (1073-85). The Emperor was simply notified of the election.
Gregory ascended the papal throne, filled with those ideas on papal omnipotence, which had long ripened and developed into a whole system in his mind. Adopting the Roman church’s long-held view on the Pope as being Christ’s ruling vicar on earth, Gregory wanted to establish a universal theocratic monarchy under papal domination. According to his conception, the Pope had to rule not only over the spiritual but also secular authorities. He regarded every authority, not excluding that of the Emperor, as lower than the Pope’s. Every power receives its blessing and authority from the Pope. In cases where there is abuse from spiritual or secular powers, the Pope has the right to deprive them of their privileges that are attached to their calling, and grant those privileges to someone else, according to his discretion. According to Gregory, the Pope has the authority to grant omophorions and Emperor’s and king’s crowns. Before beginning to bring his ideas into fruition, Gregory needed to completely remove the secular influence on papal affairs. Although having rid itself of the Emperor’s pressure on the election of Popes, the investiture still remained under secular influence i.e. the right to allocate spiritual responsibilities. Consequently, Gregory immediately went about in abolishing the investiture. At a council in 1075, he passed an act banning investitures. It was decreed that those religious individuals that received their investiture from secular authorities be replaced, while those who carried out the investiture, be excommunicated from the church. The same council forbade priests to marry. In Gregory’s view, because unwedded priests were denied relatively ties with the surrounding world, this would make them more zealous workers of the church. The struggle against investiture was undermining the feudal dependence of church lands — bishop, abbot and priest must appear as church pastors and not vassals of king or prince.
The clergy itself submitted unwillingly to the spiritual reforms. The decision of a celibate priesthood was received especially harshly. Some clerics rose up against the papal legates. The worst reception received for these papal decrees was in Germany. Papal legates appeared before Henry IV and presented him with the situation regarding investitures. As at that time Henry was setting out to war, he agreed to the papal demands. However, when he returned, he continued the practice of investiture. Then in 1076, the Pope summoned him to Rome to be tried. The Emperor disdainfully sent his envoys to the Pope, and assembled a council of German bishops at Worms. In fulfilling the wishes of the Emperor, the council decided that it was unnecessary to submit to Pope Gregory as he was trying to enslave the church and remove the authority of the bishops. Henry declared that the Pope is subverting social order, established on two beginnings and blessed by God’s grace — Emperor’s power and priesthood. Having mixed these two fundamentals together, the Pope should resign and give way to a worthier individual.
However, Gregory was not to be frightened or driven from his path. In turn, the Pope excommunicated Henry and the bishops from the church. He declared that Henry is deprived of his regal worthiness, and that his subjects are released from their allegiance to him. He charged the German princes to select a new king. Had Henry not turned the German princes against himself by his earlier actions against them, this papal command would have had no effect. These papal allies were the same feudalists, whose influence the Pope tried to eradicate from the church. The East German dukes began a war against Henry. An uprising flared up in unruly Saxony. The spiritual hierarchy, having just expressed their opposition to the Pope, was confused by the Pope’s determination and with the common people, who due to their sympathy for church reforms, organized riots against the Pope’s enemies. The dukes, having gathered for an assembly in Tribur and decided that if Henry is not re-instated to the church by the Pope, he would be denied his throne. Henry became bewildered.
In the winter of 1077, he left with a small retinue to Italy. At the time, the Pope was located at a castle in Canossa, owned by his faithful supporter countess Matilda. Having arrived there, Henry was not allowed entry into the castle. He sent an envoy to the Pope with the acknowledgment of his guilt, to express his acceptance of the Pope’s demands and to secure absolution. The Pope forced Henry to stand three days before the castle walls for his decision, dressed as a penitent in bare feet, and not eating. The Pope forgave him, but only on the condition that the matter be resolved by the German dukes at an assembly.
However the humiliation, which Henry endured, proved fruitless. The German dukes not only didn’t lay down their arms, but also elected Rudolf, Duke of Swab as their king, who commenced a war against Henry. The Pope acknowledged Rudolf as king and once again, excommunicated Henry (1080). However, Henry was still able to attract a large number of supporters. Part of the spiritual hierarchy remained by his side, fearing that with the removal of their investiture they would become fully dependent on the Pope. Among those low echelon clergy were married priests. He attracted to his side, minor knights and populations of large cities, which were growing wealthy and were endeavoring to rid themselves of the oppression of seniors. In banning the Emperor, the Pope declared that the Apostles having received the authority from Christ to bind or unbind human consciences, were placed over the church and the whole world. If their successors can control spiritual responsibilities, they would more so authoritative over kingdoms and princedoms. Henry did not fall in spirit. Convening a gathering of bishops that were supporting him, he repeated Gregory’s declaration at the councils in Mölsen and Brixen (1080), and elected a new Pope Clement III. In one of the battles, Rudolf of Swab was killed and Henry consolidated his power in Germany. He then decided to end the matter with the Pope. In 1084, he stormed Rome, raised Clement to the papal throne and was crowned Emperor by him. Pope Gregory locked himself away in the castle of Sant’Angelo and firmly refused all talks with Henry. At this time, the Norman's who have conquered southern Italy came to the Pope’s aid. Their duke, Robert Guiscard, assembled a large force, which included enlisted Saracens. Henry was forced to leave Italy with the approach of Guiscard. The Norman's and Saracens savagely looted the city in front of the Pope’s eyes. Naturally, the citizens of the city were outraged at the behavior of the Pope’s allies. Realizing his grave position, Gregory VII withdrew to Salerno in the east where he shortly died in 1805, declaring to his close associates: "All my life I loved the truth and hated iniquity, for which I now die in exile." The Roman church canonized him.
Popes Victor III (1086-87), Urban II (1088-99) and Paschal II (1099-1118), that controlled the Roman church after Gregory, were all his students and tried to realize his plans. Consequently, the struggle against investiture continued. They demanded its abolition, subjected Emperors to excommunication from the church and organized political unions against them. Henry IV, his son Henry V and their troops used to come to Italy, drive out the Pope and restore the antipope Clement. Pope Urban was especially resolute in his battle against Henry IV. In 1092, he was even able to provoke Henry’s son Conrad (who eight years later ruled Lombardy and Tuscany) against him. Urban’s sermon in Piacenza and Clermont (in France), aroused fanatical inspiration among the masses, which he was able to utilize for his own purposes. In 1096, while marching through Italy, the crusaders helped him to drive Clement out of Rome and subdue the Roman nobles that maintained the Emperor’s side. Urban then occupied the papal throne. Urban’s successor, Paschal II was able to completely dislodge antipope Clement from the domain of Rome, whereupon he died in that same year. Henry IV could do nothing with Urban II. The domain of countess Matilda barricaded Rome from the north and the support of the Norman's in the south, ensured protection for the Pope. Advanced in age, Henry IV was obliged to go to war against his son Henry. In 1106, their forces met on the banks of the river Rhine, where Henry IV died suddenly. The son was conditioned to oppose his father by the Pope, who sent him flattering letters with requests "to show some help to God’s church."
Initially, Henry V followed in his father’s footsteps. Countess Matilda died, leaving her huge estate to the Roman throne. Henry V didn’t want to allow this strengthening of the Pope’s secular possessions, and continued to insist on the Emperor’s right of investiture of hierarchy clergy in the German and Italian kingdoms. Although he occupied Rome, his precarious position in Germany once again performed a great service to the Popes. Both sides had been fatigued through battle. During Pope Callistus II (1118-24) at the assembly in Worms, the Pope concluded a very favorable treaty for himself with Emperor Henry V and the German knights. On the basis of the 1122 Worms’ concordat, the Pope, as a spiritual figure, was presented with the right to spiritual investiture i.e. the right to select and ordain bishops and abbots, in conformity with church laws, together with bestowing the ring and scepter. The Emperor, as a secular head, was accorded the secular investiture i.e. the right to grant the same bishops and abbots, princely rights, land holdings etc., while accepting from them their feudal allegiance. For a time, discords and disorders that separated the western Christian world ceased.
Papal Conflict With Emperors.
Striving toward the realization of Pope Gregory’s theocratic plans, his successors entered into the conflict with the Emperors for ascendancy of church power over the state. Thus, Innocent II (1130-43) began to openly declare that Emperors obtained their worthiness just like a fief from a Pope. The same declaration was made by Adrian IV (1154-59) in a letter written to Emperor Frederick I Barbarossa (1152-90), from the house of Hohenstaufen.
A struggle began between the Popes and Hohenstaufens on this issue, which lasted for nearly 100 years. Frederick Barbarossa came to Italy, wanting to limit Pope Adrian’s pretensions. He called an assembly, where he argued that bishops had to submit to the Emperor and that if the Popes enjoyed secular powers, it is not because of a divine right, but rather by the directive of kings that grants them this authority. Soon after the election of Adrian’s successor, opinions of the cardinals became divided. Some selected Alexander III (1159-81), opponent to the Emperor, while the others — Victor IV (1159-64), his supporter. Frederick took advantage of the situation to subordinate the Popes to his influence. He called a council and demanded that both Popes appear before it. Alexander didn’t appear at the council and committed both Victor and Frederick to excommunication. The Emperor then expelled Alexander from Rome and installed Paschal as the new Pope. Leaning on the support of the Lombard cities, Alexander was not capitulating. When matters in Italy turned unfavorable for Frederick, he made peace with Alexander in 1177, on conditions that were favorable to the Pope.
Alexander’s successors were insufficiently strong to stand up to Frederick Barbarossa and his successor, Henry VI (1191). With the help of his wedding to Constance, sole heir to the Sicilian throne, Henry appended to his holdings the Norman kingdoms of both Sicilies, making him overlord of all Italy. Even in Rome, the Popes were greatly constricted under the ordinance of the Emperor’s prefect.
With the death of Henry V (1197), who left a very young son Frederick, the situation changed. Constance became ruler of Sicily, while the knights in Germany decided to select a new Emperor. The papal throne was taken by Innocent III, one of the most outstanding politicians of his time. He set himself the task of realizing in all its fullness, Pope Gregory’s plan for theocracy, and was able to place papacy on such a high level, that it never experienced before nor surpassed subsequently. After ascending the papal throne, he forced the prefect of Rome to swear allegiance to him, thereby eliminating the Emperor’s authority over Rome. Replicating this in other cities within the church domain, he was able to created an independent papal kingdom. Having re-established opposition from the rest of the Italian cities to the Emperor’s authority, thereby securing their support, the Pope embarked on Sicily. He was fortunate in that Constance herself asked Innocent to confirm her son as heir, Frederick, to the dominion of Sicily, as a fief of the papal throne. Before her death, Constance (1198) in her will passed guardianship of her son to the Pope, making Innocent ruler of Sicily. Meanwhile in Germany, a fierce struggle was taking place for the country’s throne, and both pretenders turned to the Pope for help. In 1209, Innocent placed the crown on Otto of Saxon. Having received his crown in Rome, Otto violated his promise to protect all papal rights and expand them in Italy. He declared many papal lands as Emperor’s fifes and attacked Sicily. Innocent III excommunicated Otto from the church (1210) and declared that he is deprived of his worthiness to be Emperor. The Pope offered the German knights to elect his pupil Frederick II as their Emperor, which in fact they did.
Innocent III also revealed his power in France, Portugal and England. With the latter, he had to endure a war with the English king John "Lakeland." In 1207, the king refused to accept the Pope’s nominee, Stephen Langton as the Bishop of Canterbury. As a result of this battle, the Pope excommunicated John in 1209 and thereupon in 1212, deprived him of him of his throne. The people disliked the king for his cruelty and an uprising began in England. John became subdued, accepted Langton and acknowledged England to be a papal fief that was obliged to pay a tribute.
It was under Innocent that a Latin empire arose, and his authority and influence spread throughout a significant part of the East. He completed his brilliant manipulation with the Fourth Lateran Council (1215), which was attended by many bishops, abbots, priors and many kings of Western Europe.
After Innocents death, the Emperor’s authority became predominant over the Pope’s. Frederick II began to restore his power in Italy. He didn’t separate the Sicilian crown from the German one, as Innocent wanted. Innocent’s second successor, Pope Gregory IX (1227-42), attempted to banish Frederick from Italy and demanded the fulfillment of the promised crusade. Frederick moved on Palestine, but due to sickness among his soldiers, soon had to return. The Pope committed him to excommunication. Ignoring this and without the Pope’s permission, Frederick made a fifth crusade in 1228, temporarily seized Jerusalem from the Turks, and as a result of his marriage to Yolande — heiress to the throne of Jerusalem — and her subsequent death, crowned himself king of Jerusalem. After his return in 1229, Frederick temporarily made peace with the Pope, who was unhappy with both his successes and his actual return. Shortly after, there began a terrible hostility between them. Frederick started to appropriate papal territories. In 1239, Gregory IX again committed him to excommunication. Frederick sent an epistle to the princes and cardinals, in which he called Gregory an enemy of all governments, and promised to liberate everyone from papal tyranny. In response, the Pope sent a dispatch to them presenting Frederick as a non-believer. In 1240, the Emperor approached Rome. Counting on the French bishops as not being subordinate to Frederick, the Pope convened a council for 1241; while he in turn, seized the French bishops travelling from France. Occupying Rome, Frederick made the Pope his prisoner, who couldn’t bear the pressure and died in 1241. His successor, Celestine IV, lived just three weeks after his election. Because of dissension among the cardinals, the papal throne remained vacant for two years. In 1243, Innocent IV (1243-54) was elected and he continued his struggle with Frederick. In 1245, the Pope withdrew to Lyons, convened a council where he damned Frederick as a heretic and sacrileges, declaring his throne vacant and offering the Germans and Sicilians to choose another Emperor. Not having finished his battle with Innocent IV, Frederick II died in 1250. Having found out about this, Innocent rapturously announced Frederick’s death to the whole world as an event that was joyous to both heaven and earth.
Frederick’s children, Conrad IV and Manfred, began to consolidate the Emperor’s authority, the former — in Germany, the latter — in Naples and Sicily. Conrad died shortly thereafter, leaving a son Conradin. Just as Innocent lead the battle against the Hohenstaufens, so did his successors. In order to force them out of Naples and Sicily, the Popes placed a French prince Charles of Anjou to oppose them by inviting him to Italy with a crusading army. In the ensuing battle Manfred was killed, while Conradin was taken prisoner and executed by Charles in Naples (1268), but not without the knowledge of Pope Clement IV (1265-68).
Decline of Papal Power.
After a century of stubborn struggle against the hostile house of Hohenstaufens, the papacy gained a complete victory over them. However, this very victory was the beginning of the fall of papacy. Charles of Anjou, obligated to the Popes for his sovereignty over Naples and Sicily, and having given them a lot of promises, aspired to occupy such a position in Italy that were occupied by German Emperors. The Popes were forced to undertake measures in order to weaken his authority. Pope Nicholas III (1277-80) concluded a union with German and Byzantine Emperors, and before his death prepared an uprising in Sicily against him, known as the Sicilian supper (?). Notwithstanding this, Charles succeeded in securing such an influence in Italy that in 1281, he insisted on the election of his subordinate Pope Martin IV (1281-85).
However, the more dangerous opponent for papacy was the French king Philip the Fair (1285-1315). He rejected the papal right, established by Popes, to interfere in secular matters of other states. He delivered the first savage blow against Boniface VIII (1294-1303). Philip was at war with England. The Pope offered himself as a mediator, which Philip rejected, not wanting any interference from the Pope. The Pope became indignant, having learned that in order to cover his military expenses Philip had levied taxes on the French clergy, In 1296, the Pope issued a bull (without naming Philip), in which he threatened excommunication from the church to all laymen that are applying the taxes on the clergy, and all the clergy that are paying such taxes. The Pope replied by forbidding the export from France of all precious metals. As a result, the Pope began losing his income from France, and because of this, he agreed to concessions. The clergy was not forbidden to make voluntary donations for the state’s needs. A compromise was established, and Philip even accepted the Pope’s offer of mediating in his talks with the English king. However, it was soon discovered that in the role of adjudicator between the two, the Pope was supporting the English king. Hostilities renewed and the struggle between Philip and Boniface reached extremes. In 1301, because the papal legate spoke to the king so rudely, he had him arrested, ignoring the Pope’s demands to have the matter dealt with in Rome. The Pope wrote indignantly to the king: "Fear God and preserve His commandments. We wish you to know, that in spiritual and temporal matters, you are subordinate to us… We regard those who think otherwise as heretics. " In another letter, he offered Philip to come to Rome with the French clergy — or an authorized body — in order to explain these matters. Philip burned both letters and replied: " Let your immense stupidity know that in temporal matters, we are subordinate to no one… We regard those who think otherwise as insane." In 1302, Philip convened an assembly of deputies from all classes of society, who expressed the same opposition as the King’s to the Pope, and triumphantly declared that the king received his crown directly from God and not the Pope. The French clergy concurred with this. Boniface responded by calling a council in Rome and condemning the behavior of the French with a bull "unam Sanctam" (opening words), in which he developed with full determination, Gregory VII system. He declared: "Christ entrusted the church with two swords, symbols of two authorities — spiritual and secular. One and the other had been established for the benefit of the church. The spiritual authority is found in the hands of the Popes, while the secular one — in the hands of kings. The spiritual one is greater than the secular one, just as the soul is greater than the body. Consequently, just as the body is subordinate to the soul, so must the secular authority be in subordination to the spiritual one. Only under these circumstances can the secular authority serve the church beneficially. In case of abuse by the secular power, then the spiritual authority must try her. The spiritual authority cannot be tried by anyone. To separate secular authority from the spiritual one and recognize it as autonomous, means to introduce a dualistic heresy — manicheism. In contrast, to acknowledge the Pope’s total spiritual and secular authority, is to acknowledge the faith’s dogma."
Philip answered this bull by convening an assembly of government representatives, where the jurist Wilhelm Nogare accused the Pope of many crimes, and proposed the king be authorized to arrest and try the Pope. Boniface couldn’t tolerate this; in 1303, he damned Philip, applied interdictions on France and dismissed the whole French clergy. Philip convened a third assembly. Here, his skilful jurists accused Boniface of simony and other crimes, even non-existing ones e.g. of witchcraft, and as a consequence of this, it was decided to immediately convene a council in Lyons so that the Pope could be tried and the king vindicated. Meanwhile, Wilhelm Nogare was entrusted to arrest Boniface and present him to the council. Nogare set forth to Italy; he was joined by another enemy of the Pope, a cardinal who was a descendant of Colonna and who was driven out of office when Boniface became Pope. When they arrived, they found the Pope in a small town of Anagni. In order to disarm his enemies, he met them in full papal regalia, sitting on his throne. However, ignoring his endeavors, they arrested him in his own house. They treated him so harshly that after being liberated by the townspeople 3 months later, upon his return to Rome, he went insane and died shortly thereafter (1303).
Boniface’s successor, Benedict XI, realizing that his predecessor acted too brusquely, attempted to have a reconciliation with France. However, after 8 months in office, he died (1304). During the election of the new Pope, the cardinals were divided — those who had France’s interests at heart, wished to see a Frenchman occupy the papal throne, while those committed to Boniface’s interests — an Italian. Finally, the French bloc took the upper hand. The chosen Pope was an Archbishop Bertrand of Bordeaux, who took the papal name of Clement V (1305-14). Having an influence on the election, Philip the Fair secured an oath from the new Pope that he will revoke all of Boniface’s arrangements concerning him, denounce Boniface and destroy the Knights Templar. Fearing repercussions in Rome for his concessions to France, Clement decided to remain in France permanently by summoning the cardinals and confirmed his residency in Avignon. The Popes remained here up to 1377, and this nearly 70-year stay is known in history as the Avignon papal captivity. The Popes of Avignon, beginning with Clement V, became fully reliant upon the French kings and functioned under their influence. Despite this, the Avignon Popes strived to play the role of universal overlords — if not in France, then in other countries. However, they were not successful.
Awareness of independence of secular powers from spiritual ones developed everywhere. Following France, the next protestations against papal pretensions emerged in Germany. The Popes sent ineffectual excommunications and interdictions — but they were ignored. In 1338, the German Emperor Ludwig of Bavaria, the dukes and electorates even decided to show that the secular power was independent of the spiritual one, by passing a triumphant act. Having declared that the papal pretensions of controlling the Emperors crown as being unlawful, they decided that future coronations will not require papal affirmation. The same thing was passed in the "golden bull" (1356) of Emperor Carl IV. During the Avignon captivity of Popes, England being totally enslaved by the Popes since the times of John Lackland, also liberated itself from their influence. During Edward III reign, feudal tributes to the Popes were terminated, as was the practice of sending appellations to Rome. Even in Italy, the power of the Popes weakened. Only in the church sphere were they formally acknowledged as overlords. Whereas in reality, neither the Pope nor his successors and legates had any influence on the running of the state. Adherents of the Pope invited them to return to Rome, fearing that if the Popes remained in Avignon, papal authority would be completely obliterated. The Popes themselves were well aware of this. Employing a mercenary force for his resettlement within the church dominion, Gregory XI (1370-78) finally moved his residence to Rome (1377), where he eventually died (1378).
With his death, the Roman church experienced the beginning of the so-called Great Schism. The majority of cardinals in the papal curia were French, having come from Avignon. They insisted that the Pope be French while the Roman people demanded that he be a Roman. Eventually, an Italian was chosen as Pope — Urban (1379-89), a man of harsh and even cruel nature. The new Pope began his reign with trying to improve the morals of the clergy; this touched upon the cardinals. Insulted by this, the French cardinals seized the Pope’s valuables, left Rome declaring the election of Urban as invalid and elected their own Pope Clement VII (1379-94), who shortly thereafter settled in Avignon. Clement was recognized by France, Naples and Spain, while the other nations acknowledged Urban. Thus a dual authority appeared in the Roman church.
Attempts to Curb Papal Authority.
With the advent of the Great Schism, the western world, used to seeing the Pope as the sole head of the church, became very confused with this development. Furthermore, both the Roman and the Avignon Popes increased this confusion through their intrigues, malediction and dissolute lifestyles. Church discipline fell. Church transgressions intensified, especially simony. In the west, belief in the necessity for a visible church head wavered. Moves against the papal authority as head of the church began to emerge. Opinions began to be expressed that the Ecumenical council was greater than the Pope and it can pass judgement on him, and that only through that council can church transgressions and schism be stopped. After several discussions, the western powers agreed to initiate decisive measures to end the schism.
In 1397, an assembly of representatives of various powers decided to invite both Popes to voluntarily relinquish their positions. However, their concurrence didn’t eventuate. Greatly vexed at the two Popes behavior, the French and Roman cardinals agreed on convening a council. This council in the name of the two bodies was convened in 1409, in Pisa. At the same time, the Popes convened their own councils, which rejected the legality of the Pisa council. Apart from cardinals, bishops and abbots at the council in Pisa, there were also many magisters of theology and canonical rights. France and England sent their empowered representatives. However, the council that strived to end the dual papacy, didn’t achieve this because of the mistakes committed. The council decreed that the council can judge Popes and demanded the appearance of both Popes for judgement. When the Popes didn’t appear, the council declared them deposed. The question of transforming the head of the church and its members was raised. However, the cardinals attempted to convince the council to first elect a new Pope and then effect the reforms under his control. Alexander V was elected as the new Pope, and this was the mistake that the council made. Contending that the reforms need preparatory work before they can be introduced, he dismissed the council with a promise of reconvening it in 3 years time. Effectively, in addition to the two Popes, the Roman church received a third one. Each one regarded himself as the lawful Pope and was recognized as such by one or the other kingdoms. Alexander V died in 1410. It was said that Baldassare Cossa, who assumed the papal throne under the name of John XXIII, poisoned him.
After persistent calls, especially from the German Emperor Sigismund, the Pope agreed to convoke a general council, which continued from November 1414 till May 1418 in Constance.
In reality, there were three Popes ruling simultaneously: Gregory XII in Rome, recognized by middle and south of Italy; Benedict XIII in Avignon from 1394 and recognized by France and Spain; John XXIII in Bologna, recognized by northern Italy, Switzerland and Germany. They finally found no remedy than to dethrone all three Popes and elect a new one (11 Nov. 1417) — Martin V, who in turn closed the council with a promise to reconvene it in 5 years time. All the representatives of different kingdoms were able to achieve is to conclude separate concordats with the Pope, regarding the removal of some of the church’s failings. Martin was able to convince the council to defer the major reforms until the convening of the new council. The sitting council was closed in 1431. During Martins reign, the other Popes died and the schism ended. He didn’t concern himself with reform and only called the council in 1431 at Basle, but died the same year.
Martins successor, Eugene IV (1431-47) had to open the council at Basle, because all the representatives invited by Martin, had already arrived in 1431. The new Pope sent his cardinal to represent him and under whose auspices the council sitting opened. Eugene counted on the council acting according to his directives. However, this didn’t occur; the council immediately announced that it will act quite independently concerning the followers of Huss. As a result, the Pope declared the council closed. However the fathers at Basle didn’t want to recognize this. Verifying the prior state that an ecumenical council is higher than the Pope, they demanded that Eugene appear for trial and that if he failed to do so, they threatened him with removal. After some opposition, the Pope was forced through circumstances in 1433, to rescind his order for the closure of the council. However, the peace didn’t last long. The council of Basle took to church reforms, and its first enactment was to curb the unlimited authority of the Pope. Naturally, Eugene didn’t want to agree with this. Polemics ensued. The Basle fathers insisted that that the council was above the Pope and consequently he had to obey it. But the Pope maintained that the council was totally dependent on the him, as all its determinations received its legal status through the Pope’s confirmation. In 1437, so as to terminate the Basle fathers’ dangerous endeavors for reform, Eugene decided to relocate the council to Italy. At the time, there were discussions between the Pope and the Greek government about convening a council to deliberate over the question of unity between the two faiths. Eugene insisted that the council be held in Italy, and proposed that the Basle fathers relocate themselves over there. They refused.
Nonetheless, Eugene declared the Basle council closed and in 1438, appointed a new council at Ferrara, which was subsequently moved to Florence. Notwithstanding this, the council at Basle continued its sittings, and shortly after the opening of the council in Ferrara, declared the Pope dethroned. In response, the Pope excommunicated the Basle fathers from the church. After this, the Basle council started to wane; many of its bishops departed and some went over to the Pope’s side. Not being fazed by this, in place of Eugene, the remaining bishops elected a new Pope — Felix V. However, as everyone was conscious of the schism, the election of the new Pope was greeted with displeasure. Only a small number of the German electors approved of Felix. Even so, the Basle council continued sporadically in various cities until 1449, significantly weakening the papal authority. The council’s reforms were adopted in France and Germany and because of them, it was here that the clergy and churches were more independent of the Pope. In 1438, there appeared in France the so-called pragmatically sanction, while in Germany, in 1448 — the Vienna concordat, which defined the relationship of the French and German churches with the Pope.
Having concluded the matter with the Greeks, Eugene IV applied all his power in order to eliminate the aftermath of the Basle council — and so did his successors. However, because papal despotism was well known to everybody, their endeavors to have absolute power over all the churches met with little success. The 15th century saw the Popes ceasing their endeavors to have influence on political affairs of western states. They understood that the era of Hildebrand’s ideas had passed. Italy was the only country — in church domains — where the Popes enjoyed secular authority. The successors of Eugene IV, before the reformation, turned their attention toward consolidating this power. They wanted to make their domain a true kingdom, with the Pope as Emperor. As a consequence, more than at any other time, papacy assumed a secular characteristic. It is through this that the hierarchy and "Christ’s vicars" turned into sly politicians, intriguers, warriors, extravagant and immoral tyrants etc. For example Pope Leo X (1513-21), during whose time reformation commenced, was nothing more than an indulgent and extravagant secular ruler. The arts and sciences (of which he was patron), provided him with a more refined enjoyment. Religion and the church were completely forgotten by this Pope. The Pope himself treated Christianity with skepticism, while his confidants openly expressed their non-belief, and mocked everything that was holy.
Church’s Secession in the West.
Reasons that Prepared the Separation of the Churches.
In both the pre-Christian and Christian eras, the Roman empire was sharply divided into two divisions — east and west. This division was dependent upon the different types of inhabitants; the first side had a preponderance of Greeks, while in the other — Laotians or Latin-orientated inhabitants, each with their special character, direction in life and activity. Having spread throughout the whole world, the Christian Church — according to the potency of differences within the population, from which came differences in national character, morals, inclinations, outlook etc., was also noticeably divided into two sections — eastern and western. We can see from the very early Christian times, certain distinctive features in the eastern and western churches, the most visible one being the difference in the church’s directions toward enlightenment.
Contrary to the East, the western Church, by rejecting reasoning in matters of faith, it in the main avoided research into dogmas of faith, and in general were disinterested in theological abstract matters; however, they paid a great deal of attention to the internal aspects of Christianity — the ceremonies, discipline, administration, relationship of the Church with government and society, etc. In resolving dogmatic questions, heresy appeared among the eastern churches; in the west, inasmuch as there was no interest in theological matters, there was practically no heresy; the absence of a sensible understanding of Christianity saw only the emergence of schisms. The Eastern hierarchy strived to refute all heresies and establish the Orthodox faith on practical beginnings; while the West endeavored with all the means under its disposal, to retain church order, place themselves in a position of independence from secular powers and intensify their influence over society and government. In a word, the Eastern church had her own interests and aims while the West — hers. These differing interests and aims separated the Eastern and Western churches of the empire, although not to the extent so as to regard one another as alien. Unity of faith, the Mysteries and church structure all kept them bound together as one for a long time.
A split and the termination of all relations between the western and eastern churches could only follow upon the violation of the unison of faith, Mysteries or church structure by one church or the other. Much to the misfortune for the whole Christian world, the Western church did violate this unison and broke its union with the Eastern church. It can be seen from the above that over a period of several centuries, the Western church permitted wanton injections of new and distorted teachings in the areas of dogma, rites and canons. Thus, in the 6-11 centuries, all the Western churches asserted the teaching on the Holy Spirit emanating also from the Son (filioque). The Ecumenical Church — which included the Western one — had always recognized all similar teachings that distorted the fundamentals of Christian dogmas as heretical, and had always excluded from her assembly anyone that held such beliefs. Furthermore, the Western church permitted many deviations in its rites — introducing lent on Saturday, performing the Eucharist with unleavened bread, permitting only Bishops to perform chrismation, celibacy for all its clergy etc. Finally, in the canonical area, the Western church permitted unbelievable innovations, making the Pope the high judge of the whole Ecumenical Church. The teachings on the primacy of the Pope, placing him higher than the Ecumenical councils, subverted church order that had been established by the Apostles and the holy fathers. Its realization in practice could have brought — as it happened to the Western Church — distortion of the whole theology, all Christianity. This is because one individual, through a wanton and unabashed free will, could insert new teachings, rites, and alter the church structure, thereby altering the appearance of the Church as given to Her by the Founder — Lord Jesus Christ and His Apostles. In relation to the long existing differences in the character, direction and life in the activity of the Eastern and Western churches, these aberrations and digressions from the general church order prepared the severance in unity by the former from the latter.
Beginning of the Separation.
In the middle of the 9th century, conditions became right for the commencement of the separation. The following served as the cause.
Upon the death of Emperor Theophilus in 842, his six-year-old son Michael III inherited the Byzantine Empire. His guardians-rulers were: his mother Theodora, kooropalat Theoktist, patrician Bardas, the empress's brother and general Manuel. After the cessation of iconoclasm, Saint Methodius was elevated to the post of Patriarch. After his death in 846, the Patriarch’s throne passed to Abbot Ignatius, son of Emperor Michael Rangebé, well known for his pious life. Becoming of age, Michael III handed over the affairs of the state to his Uncle Bardas and surrendered himself to drunkenness and debauchery. In 854, he overthrew his mother and incarcerated her in a palace at Cariana, and contrary to the will of the Patriarch, he forcibly had his mother tonsured at a monastery in 857. Having banished his wife, Bardas began living with his daughter-in-law. After fruitless admonishments, the Patriarch refused him Holy Sacraments on the day of Theophany. Bardas came to hate the Patriarch and began to incite Michael against him, finally succeeding in having the holy father banished to the island of Terebinthus.
In 857, Photius was forcibly elevated to the Patriarch’s throne. He was around 60 years old (his brother was married to Emperor Theodore’s sister), was outstanding in his love for the sciences and education, having at one time taught Emperor Michael and Constantine the Philosopher, and more recently was the government’s first secretary. In a matter of days, he passed the stages of reader, deacon, priest and finally, ordained as bishop. Upon becoming a bishop, he gave the council of bishops a written assurance that he was not guilty of dismissing Ignatius, and that he will always treat him with respect. Ignatius had decreed excommunication to all that do not recognize him as Patriarch. In 859, the local council of bishops in Constantinople met Ignatius’ conduct with disapproval and endorsed Photius as the head. Despite Photius’s intercession, Patriarch Ignatius’s supporters were subjected to persecution by those (they were called "akribeets") who regarded it essential to conduct a merciless struggle against iconoclasts. Photius’s supporters, so-called "economy," had a condescending attitude toward heretics, and the enmity between the two sides was becoming more aggravated.
In order to end these church disorders and through Bardas’s advice, Emperor Michael decided to convene a great council and invite Pope Nicholas I to attend.
The council was called in Constantinople in 861. The Pope was sent letters of invitation by the Emperor and Patriarch. Although the Emperor hid the real purpose of the council, Nicholas was well aware of the hierarchical upheaval, and as he aspired to realize Isadore’s false decretals about the Pope’s omnipotence, hastened to take advantage of the situation so as to make himself arbitrator of the Eastern Church. He sent two legates to the council with letters to the Emperor and Photius. He wrote to the Emperor in arrogant terms, that he had acted against church rules, having dethroned one Patriarch and replacing him with another without the Pope’s — his –knowledge; at the same time accusing Photius of being ambitious and illegally accepting the Patriarch’s post, because church rules forbid the instant elevation of a laymen through all church levels; moreover, he added that he will not recognize him as the Patriarch until such time as the legates had sorted out this matter.
Actually, a council was convened at Constantinople in 861, with the attendance of the Pope’s legates. However, contrary to the Pope’s expectations, the Eastern fathers acted independently, outside his influence. Ignatius was regarded as dethroned, while Photius as the legal Patriarch of Constantinople. The determinations of the council were relayed to the Pope by the legates for his information. Photius also enclosed with this information, his own letter of response to the Pope’s accusations, explaining with dignity that he agreed to the Patriarch’s post not because of ambition, as he didn’t seek it, but because he was forced to accept it. Regarding the violation of rules, Photius pointed out that these regulations are decisions of local churches and are not obligatory to Constantinople, and that even the Western church permits these enactment's. Furthermore, Photius mentioned to the Pope that in being concerned for church harmony, the Pope himself had violated this as he was associating with runaway spiritual figures from the Constantinople patriarchate, who had no accreditation. Nicholas was extremely displeased with the conclusions of the council and Photius’s letter. He most probably, would have recognized Photius as Patriarch of Constantinople, if he hadn’t seen in him a firm opponent to his pretensions to being the head of the Church. He now begins the struggle with the Eastern church, figuring to vanquish Photius and then subject the eastern church to his influence — just as the western churches. With this in mind, he sent a letter to Emperor Michael. Assuming the tone of a judge, he expresses in it that with regard to Ignatius and Photius, he doesn’t recognize the council’s determinations, and that he charged his legates to sort out the matter and not decide it. Also, that he now declares Photius as having his post as Patriarch revoked, while ordering that Ignatius be elevated to this post without any scrutiny etc. In his letter to Photius, the Pope again argued the illegality of his appointment as Patriarch, and that if they don’t have any rules forbidding such appointments, then they exist in the Roman church, which is the head of all churches and because of this, everybody must abide by its decisions.
Whereupon, the Pope convened a council of his bishops in Rome (862), where he damned Photius and reinstated Ignatius. Apart from this, he sent a circular epistle to all the Eastern bishops, calling on them to cease relations with Photius and deal with Ignatius. Of course, Constantinople didn’t take heed of the Pope. The Emperor sent him a sharp letter, in which he unashamedly expressed the bitter truth to him — that he as Pope, is meddling in other’s affairs and that church of Constantinople does not recognize his right to be head and judge of the Universal Church. The Pope responded with a likewise, terse letter — and the rift between the churches commenced.
The question as to who controlled the Bulgarian church caused greater enmity between the two churches. As is known, the Bulgarian king Boris was christened in 864. His subjects followed suit. Just as the first Christian preachers in Bulgaria were Greek missionaries, so was the first hierarchy — bishops and priests. Boris’s fear of succumbing to Constantinople’s political and spiritual influence prompted him to seek a church union with Rome, especially as the Roman preachers had already infiltrated into Bulgaria. In 865, Boris dispatched a delegation to Nicholas I in Rome, requesting that he send some Latin priests to Bulgaria. Nicholas was overjoyed at this request and sent Latin bishops and priests. Following this, the Greek clergy were driven out of Bulgaria and replaced with the Lateens. The Pope’s clergy again began to inject their misguided teachings into the newly-created churches. Thus, the newly-christened Bulgars had to be Chrismated again on the grounds that the previous one was ineffective; changed the fast day from Wednesday to Saturday; permitted the consumption of dairy products during the first week of Great Lent; labelled the married Greek priests as being unlawful, and taught the emanation of the Holy Spirit from the Son also etc. This papal usurpation of power and the clergy’s behavior in Bulgaria, produced bad feelings in Constantinople.
Photius assembled a local council, condemned all the Roman fallacies and advised all the Eastern Patriarchs of this by way of a circular, inviting them to a new council for the purpose of examining the erroneous teachings of the Roman church. This council opened in Constantinople in 867. It was attended by local representatives of the Eastern Patriarchs, many bishops and Emperor Michael himself with the new Caesar, Basil of Macedonia. Photius unveiled before the council in convincing fashion, all the fallacies of the Roman church, and proposed that Pope Nicholas be unseated. To this end, it was decided to approach the western Emperor Ludwig. The conflict between the churches took a different turn. Due to the intrigues of Basil the Macedonian, Emperor Michael III was killed and was replaced by him. His agenda didn’t include a rift with the Pope. Consequently, he decided to dethrone Photius and re-instate Ignatius. He sent a letter to the Pope in Rome, humiliating the Eastern Church. Basil subordinated the Eastern Church to the Pope by handing him Photius for his judgment, at the same time requesting his confirmation of Ignatius. However, Nicholas didn’t live long enough to savoir the moment — he died before the arrival of the messenger.
The new Pope, Adrian II, hastened to take advantage of the situation that was favorable to the Roman cathedra. He convened (868) a council in Rome, pronounced an anathema on Photius and his supporters, and publicly burned the 867 Constantinople’s decrees against Nicholas, which were sent to him by Basil of Macedonia. He thereupon sent legates so as to finally resolve the matter between Photius and Ignatius, thereby confirming his authority in that country. In 869, a council was held in Constantinople, regarded by the West as the 8th Ecumenical Council. At this council, Photius was dethroned and condemned, while Ignatius was reinstated. However, worst of all was the fact that at this council, the Eastern Church agreed to all the demands of the Pope and subordinated Herself to him. The legates engaged in council matters and reasoning in the spirit of the false Isadore’s decrees about the Pope’s primacy, attempted to pass an edict forbidding even the Council to pass resolutions against the Pope. This mistake was realized by the Greek bishops only after the closure of the Council. When the legates presented the Pope with the Council’s acts, he at first confiscated them but then returned them. However, on the question of the Bulgarian Church, the Eastern bishops and even Patriarch Ignatius remained uncompromising.
After the closure of the Council, notwithstanding the demands from the legates in private meetings with Ignatius and representatives of the Eastern Patriarchs, and despite their dire threats to Ignatius, the representatives found that the Bulgarian Church should be answerable to Constantinople. After the departure of the legates, Ignatius dispatched a Greek Archbishop to Bulgaria, who was accepted by Basil. At the same time, all the Latin clergy were removed. Although Pope Adrian — after learning of this — forbade Ignatius to interfere in the administration of the Bulgarian Church, this was ignored in Constantinople. Consequently, the abated disagreement between the churches flared up with new strength when Photius, once again, assumed the throne (879).
After being dethroned in 869, Photius was incarcerated. Notwithstanding his confined situation, he bore this with exceptional resoluteness, continuing to oppose the subordination of the Eastern Church to Rome. He even succeeded to gain sympathy from Ignatius’s adherents and the Emperor Basil himself, who recalled him from confinement and charged him with his children’s education. Upon the death of Ignatius, the Emperor offered the Patriarch’s throne to Photius. At this time Basil didn’t value the peaceful relationship he had with the new Pope — John VIII — particularly as the Saracens had attacked Italy, and blatantly re-instated Photius. A council was held in 879 to remove the condemnation of Photius. At the request of the Emperor, Pope John sent his legates. He agreed to acknowledge Photius as Patriarch, on the conditions that Photius acknowledge that his reinstatement was due to the Pope’s mercy, as well as renounce his authority over the Bulgarian Church.
At the council, the legates didn’t even raise the first condition, as they were advised that because Photius had already been recognized by the Constantinople Church, a confirmation from the Pope was unnecessary. As for the Bulgarian Church, the council explained that demarcation of dioceses rested in the Emperor’s hands. Thus the Pope’s conditions were left unfulfilled. However, the legates had to agree to the lifting of Photius’s condemnation and the re-establishment of relations with him by Rome. They didn’t even protest when the Nicene Creed was read at the council, without any additions — from the Son (filioque). It was confirmed that it was not to be changed under the threat of anathema. Having received the council acts and having learned that his conditions had not been met, Pope John VIII demanded through his legate Marina that the Emperor rescind the council’s determinations. Because of Marina's impertinent behavior in Constantinople, he was imprisoned. Now, as it became perfectly clear to the Pope that Photius was not going to give him any concessions and he would have no influence over him, he passed a new anathema on Photius. Again, polemics and conflicts ensued between Constantinople and Rome. The ensuing Popes all subjected Photius to the same anathema, which collectively totaled 12 in all. The rift between the Churches had begun
Final Separation of the Churches in the 11th Century.
After Photius’s second dethroning (886) by Leo the Wise and up to the middle of the 11th century, contacts between the Eastern and Western Churches were sporadic and rare. Because of their personal motives, only the Byzantine Emperors made contact with the Popes. Finally, in the middle of the 11th century, active undertakings began, culmination in a full rift between the Churches. At that time, the Pope was Leo IX, while the Constantinope Patriarch was Michael Cerularius. Leo IX tried with all his might to reassert the waning papal influence, both in the East as well as the West. His first efforts were to consolidate his influence in a number of churches in southern Italy, which belonged to the Constantinople Patriarch. Thus, the Latin outlook began to spread among these churches, and the Eucharist was performed with unleavened bread. Whereupon, Pope Leo attempted to reactivate opposition from the Patriarch of Antioch to Michael Cerularius, who in turn decided to put an end to papal intrigues. He banned Argira — commander of the Greek forces in Italy — from having Holy Communion, because he cooperated in the performance of Eucharist with unleavened bread; closed all Latin monasteries and churches so as to eliminate temptation to the Orthodox faithful, and directed (1053) the Bulgarian Archbishop Leo, to issue an epistle, condemning the new teachings of the Lateens. This epistle reached the Pope, creating a big stir in Rome. While wishing — for political considerations — to maintain peaceful relations with the East, the Pope nevertheless responded to Leo’s epistle by sending a letter to Michael Cerularius, stating that nobody has the right to judge the apostolic cathedra, and that the Patriarch of Constantinople should treat it with respect, seeing as how the Popes granted him his privileges. Because the Byzantine Emperor Constantine (1042-1054) — also for political considerations — wished for peace with the Pope, the papal letter was received favorably. Moreover, the Emperor and the Pope wanted to establish a practicable peace between the churches, and to that end the Pope sent his legates to Constantinople. Among them was a cardinal Goombert a fervent and conceited individual. Because they treated Michael Cerularius with open contempt, he refused to hold talks with them. Ignoring this and relying on the Emperor’s protection, the legates, under the guise of reconciliation between the churches, commenced to act in favor of the Roman cathedra. Thus, Goombert issued a refutal of Leo’s epistle, and the Emperor had it distributed among the people. Upon the insistence of the legates, the Emperor forced monk Nikita Steefat — author of the publication condemning the Latinos — to burn the book. Finally the legates, not hopeful of bringing the Patriarch under their influence, issued an act excommunicating him and the whole Greek Church, accusing them of all possible types of heresies. They placed it triumphantly on the altar during Mass in a church at Sophia, and left Constantinople.
In the "Chronicle of Church events," Bishop Arsenius describes the legates’ behavior thus: "And so the papal legates, weary of the opposition from the Patriarch" — as they said — "decide on a most insolent act. On the 15th of July, while the clergy was getting ready for church service at 3 o’clock on Saturday, they enter the church in Sophia and in full view of the clergy and worshippers, they place the decree on the main altar. In leaving, they shake the dust off their shoes as a testimony to what is written in the Gospel (Mat. 10:14), exclaiming: ‘Let god observe and judge.’" This is how Goombert himself saw it. Among other things, the decree spoke of: "with regard to the pillars of the empire and honored, wise citizens, then the city (Constantinople) is — utmost Christian and Orthodox. With regard to Michael, being illegally called Patriarch, and supporters of his folly, countless weeds of heresy are being scattered within him…" Further on, they are called simoniacs and compared to the worst heretics — (because they had erased from the Creed "and from the Son"; this is how little the legates knew about history!), once again, I don’t know (for permitting married clergy) etc.. Consequently "Michael, for his abuse in calling himself Patriarch, neophyte, having donned the monastic vestment through human fear, and who is now accused of grave crimes; also Leo, bishop of Akreed, a dignitary of Miguel, Constantine, who trampled the Roman sacrificial offering, and all those that share their fallacy and pride, all heretics, the devil and his demons — until such time as they come to their senses, let them be anathematized, let them be anathematized — maranatha, and let them not be regarded as Catholic Christians but heretics and prozymites).
Let it be, let it be . let it be! The arrogance of the papal legates aroused the whole population of the capital against them, and it was only due to the Emperor’s respect for their status as envoys, were they allowed to leave the city. On the 20th July, at the meeting of the Patriarch’s "permanent" synod that was made up of 12 Metropolitans and 2 Archbishops, and in the presence of 7 Archbishops that were present at the time in the capital, a council epistle was drawn up. It condemned the activities of the papal legates and damned the authors of the anathema decree. This was relayed to all the other Eastern Patriarchs. In its informative pronouncements, it stated that the legates were liars that acted without the Pope’s knowledge or authority. Indeed, in September 1053 the Pope was a Norman prisoner in Benevent and after his release, died on the 19th April, 1054 i.e. 2 months before the complete rift. Consequently, it is not without foundation to conclude that the legates carried out the will of the powerful enclave of Roman cardinals, as well as those forces in Eastern Italy that were antagonistic to the Greek authorities, and in their activities, leaned on the active Latinos in the Greek empire, which are mentioned in the Patriarch’s epistle.
Heresies and Sects in the West.
Theological Directions in the West.
In the 9th and 10th centuries, the governing direction in spiritual enlightenment in the West was based on the Biblical-practical teachings. The whole theological interest consisted of studying the Holy Gospel, according to the interpretations of the ancient teachers. Apart from the Holy Writings, studies of Church dogmas didn’t exist and therefore, there were no theological disciplines. However, in the 11th and 12th centuries, a love to pursue the study of abstract theological questions and aspirations to bring together all the components of the Church and its religious doctrines into a scientific system, arose in the West. This tendency coincided with the political elevation of the Pope and Church, together with the spread of philosophies by Plato and especially Aristotle. The result of the commencement of the "thinking movement" in the West was the appearance of theological studies, developed in two directional forms — scholastic and mystic.
The essence of these theological studies, known under the term scholastic (from the word school, "schola"), was the drive to unite Revelation and philosophy, faith and learning within its confines. The amalgamation of Revelation and philosophy was presented in the following manner. Revelation gave the material for theology, while philosophy — its form. The truth of the Revelation had to always remain inviolable as this was the characteristic feature of scholasticism, in that it never concerned itself with the nature of the Church’s teachings, and everything the Church believed in (correctly or incorrectly), was accepted as the absolute truth.
Philosophy on the other hand (proper dialectics), had to fashion, explain, prove and orderly arrange all the material provided by Revelation. It was from this — as they used to say in the middle ages — philosophy was the servant of theology. For example: in examining the Church’s teachings that everyone has sin through Adam, or that God became human, or that Christ is always present at Eucharist — scholasticism had always accepted all this as immutable truths. However, at the same time, it was involved in investigating questions as to how could everybody have sinned through Adam, why did God become human, how can Christ be present at every Eucharist. This initiation provided a full spectrum for dialectic conclusions and all possible types of intellectual reasoning. Here indeed was a matter of philosophy and its dialectics. And indeed, the scholastic theologians were always outstanding for their plethora of thoughts and subtle dialectic intelligence. Furthermore, the philosophical issue was to bring about into a unified whole — all the different points in the religious doctrine, examine the pro and contra, explained and approved from all sides — and outline their unique totality, i.e. create a theological system. The various points in the religious doctrine that were initially proven by reason, were becoming a subject of learning and not of faith. Thus the purpose of scholasticism was to elevate faith to the level of learning. In its endeavors to achieve its tasks and aspirations, scholasticism created much good and at the same time, made many errors. Scholasticism’s main accomplishment is found in its research and contentions, which gave clarity, accuracy and definition to the Church’s teachings on faith, and brought it systematic order. The ugly side of scholasticism is found in the following — in substantiating theological truths, scholastics often cited meaningless and petty forms of evidence, regarding them as being important; presented many preposterous and curious questions, and resolved them in a likewise ridiculous manner; indulged in dialectical arguments, placing agility and expediency of proof ahead of substance of the religious doctrine. Its theological system was presented as a collection of truths in a connected outline, but because of its divisions and subdivisions that were not pertinent to the subject, it was entangled. In short, scholastic theologians were paying exclusive attention to the formal side of the matter: to them, it wasn’t the religious doctrine itself that was important, but its presentation. It is from this that the scholastics elevated as dogmas, many incorrect teachings that existed in the Roman Church, either in their infancy or in the form of detached opinions. With the passing of time and scholastics being in full control, all the Roman Church’s theology was contained in one form only, and all her dogma’s could be accepted only in the form that it was presented by the scholastics. Live and active faith, as well as intelligent study within the realms of religion but not suitable to scholastic thinking, were totally eradicated by scholasticism.
Running parallel with the scholastic direction in theology was mysticism (from the word to close your eyes). Scholasticism strove to comprehend religious doctrines of the Church, by way of reason and through logical conclusions. The theologians on the contrary, wanted to understand the dogmas through feelings, by way of inner contemplation and immersion into one’s self. Mysticism, asserted that a person can get to know God and all the revealed teachings, not through dialectical proof, but by spiritual elevation toward God in the form of direct contemplation. Being in a state of meditation and ecstasy, a person will be able to perceive the presence of God in his soul and feel fulfilled and enlightened. It is this condition that entails the direct, inner understanding of God. It is the feeble level that will have a place in the next world. In order to attain a vision and awareness of God here on earth, said the mystics, one needs to have passed through a number of stages of self-improvement. In essence, they offered three stages. The first is cleansing i.e. the release of the spirit — with the aid of asceticism — from all of the ties of nature’s feelings. The second is enlightenment i.e. the inner, purely spiritual life, when the spirit lives and functions absolutely free of the influences of the sentient world. The third is realization i.e. fulfillment in God, Who fills the whole essence of a human being. Being filled with the presence of God, a person is in a state of enlightenment and ecstasy, which manifests itself — here on earth — in acts that have divine characteristics (miracles, prophesies etc.).
The scholastic direction of theology in the West was consolidated by Anselm, Archbishop of Canterbury (died 1109), while the mystical aspect — by the renowned Bernard Klervosski (died 1153). In the thirteenth century, scholasticism attained its full maturity in the person of Thomas Aquina (died 1274). The 15th century saw the darker sides of scholastic directions, empty formalism and casuistry, come into overwhelming importance. In practice, the scholastic directions with its attestations of for and anti — in a moral sense — proved to be harmful. With the aid of casuistry, attempts materialized to justify crime, and it was because of this that scholasticism exhausted itself. In the beginning of the 16th century it disappeared completely, although traces of it remained for a long time in theological teachings. In the 15th century, mysticism assumed a more practical direction, expressed in sermons on genuinely pious living.
The most outstanding representative of practical mysticism was Thomas a` Kempis (died 1471), having written "Imitation of Christ," which received world renown. To this day, it enjoys universal respect throughout the west.
New Dogmas in the Roman Church.
During scholasticism’s reign and with its assistance, many new dogmas appeared in the Roman Church. Among them, the following three stand out especially — teachings on the over and above obligatory achievements of saints, on indulgences and purgatory. All these teachings was the result of the scholastic theologians’ warped ideas on redemption.
The teachings on over and above obligatory achievements of saints, emerged from their Pelagian outlook on the condition of a human being — before and after his fall from sin — and through this viewpoint, his absolution and salvation. According to their conception, the original truth (justitia originalis) was made up exclusively in the supernatural gifts of grace (dona supernaturalia).
The fall from sin led to the loss of these gifts only; the moral powers of a person remained the same as they were before the fall, with all their perfection's and flaws, which Nature was endowed with by the Creator. However, before the fall, these flaws did not surface while the gifts of grace were active. With the loss of the latter, they began to emerge and according to the scholastics, redemption consisted in a person’s return to the primary truth i.e. the supernatural gifts of grace. Through the power of the Lord Jesus Christ’s achievements, grace returns to a person. With regard to the restoration of a person’s moral powers, there is no mention by the scholastics, inasmuch as they were never subjected to corruption. To them, fall from sin and redemption is presented as some sort of judicial act. A person sins — grace is taken away; redeemed — grace is returned. In both instances, grace is restored to the person through outward manner. However — the Latin theologians continue — Jesus Christ redeemed humanity from its primary sin and eternal torment. For sins committed after the initial redemption, a person has to bring satisfaction (satisfactio) himself through good deeds. This is quite possible for an individual as his moral powers had not been corrupted, and he can personally perform many good deeds. Saints have so many good deeds that they not only cover their sins, but have a surfeit. It is this surplus of good deeds that represent over and above obligatory achievements. In trying to prove their teachings, the scholastics erroneously cited the Savior's decrees regarding about a morally complete life e.g. not marrying, voluntary poverty etc. Having discovered the saints good deeds above those required, the scholastics nominated them as a treasury of above the obligatory achievements of the saints.
This treasury became the basis for indulgences. Indulgences are no more than the abuse of disciplined repentance. In the ancient Ecumenical Church, it was the practice to allot an act of penance to the penitent. In the middle ages, with the general dissipation of morals within the Roman church, allocation of such acts of penance e.g. fasting, seemed difficult to fulfil. The obliging clergy began to make concessions; it replaced these acts with other, more easier directives e.g. nominated that the penitent attend one or another church etc. for which his sins were forgiven. More than that — in line with the judicial structure of church life in the West, it became possible to replace an act of penance with a monetary donation to a good cause, the Church or to the poor. In the 10th century, donation of money as an act of penance became the norm. Thus, for money, acts of penance were avoided through concessions i.e. indulgences. Release of sins could be obtained through payment of money. At the end of the 11th century, the crusades began. According to the opinion of the Lateens, the deeds of the crusaders were regarded as the fulfillment of any type of act of penance. Being the main initiators of the Crusades and in order to attract people to the cause, the Popes began to grant bulls for these deeds, which carried indulgences — release of not only those sins that had been already committed but for future ones. Participation in these Crusades could be through joining personally, or by donating money for its armaments. The Popes found it quite legal to grant indulgences to those who had donated this money. Realizing quickly that these indulgences were an excellent source of raising money, they began to grant them to others outside the Crusades.
Consequently, these indulgences became a commercial enterprise. In the 14th and 15th centuries, the sale of indulgences took on a scandalous character. They outraged every true religious feeling. The scholastic theologians took it upon themselves to give this abusive practice a dogmatic basis, emanating from the viewpoint that Jesus Christ’s sacrifice satisfied Divine justice and redeemed mankind from eternal suffering, in terms of the primal sin only. All other sins committed by a person after this redemption, had to be repaired by that person, and decreed acts of penance are such deeds that would satisfy Divine justice.
(According to Orthodox teachings, decreed acts of penance are only a type of healing method to spiritually elevate the moral strength of a person, and are certainly not deeds that release sins.) Scholastic theologians regard decreed acts of penance equal to all types of voluntary exploits of atonement and good works. However, not every person has sufficient good works so as to be free from temporary punishment. In these instances, the Church comes to his aid. At her disposal, or more specifically — the Pope’s — there is a treasury of deeds by saints. The Pope takes a sufficient amount of these deeds to cover the sins of the individual and transfers it to him. On the basis of these good deeds of the saint being ascribed to the sinner, he is released from his sins through the granting of this indulgence. This is closely tied in with the teachings on purgatory (purgatotrium).
Teachings on purgatory is a deformed approach to the orthodox teachings concerning the disorderly state of the soul after death, and prayers for it. The scholastics pronounced that if a person doesn’t liberate himself of punishment for his sins — through the performance of good deeds during his life — then punishment will follow him into the life hereafter. They stated that in the life beyond the grave, there is a place where these souls enter and endure punishment, which cleanses them of their outstanding sins. This place is purgatory. In line with what people envisioned, the scholastics allowed purgatory to contain corporeal flames. In order to release the soul from these flames, it was necessary to turn to the treasury of the saints and secure indulgences in the name of the sinner. In 1477, Pope Sixtus IV finally established a dogma that after death, the soul is released from purgatory by means of indulgences; moreover, he noted the full weight of his prayers for the sinners.
Sects in the Roman Church in the 11th—15th Centuries.
In the 11th-15th centuries, Church life in the West presented very many abnormalities. The Popes used their spiritual authority to secure corporeal power and appeared not so much as hierarchy of the Church, but as despots that trampled all the laws on morality and justice. The majority of bishops too were not outstanding for their moral qualities, being interested in earthly matters only; the clerics shocked with their rudeness and corruption; the people, unfamiliar with Christian truths, were immersed in superstition. With the Roman Papacy, as with the hierarchy, there was complete incomprehension of, or oblivion to, the aim of true Christian living. Church life in the West turned toward a sentient direction, and the Roman Church appeared not so much as a divine institution as a human one. This degradation of the Church was leading people that valued religious interests, to dissatisfaction and protests. As a consequence, their discontent with the arrangement within the Church separated them from her, and there appeared independent religious societies that aimed to restore the true Church. However, arming themselves against the abuses of the ruling Church, the separatists themselves violated acceptable bounds, thereby becoming sectarians. Thus the endeavors to reform the Church in the 11-15th centuries in the West, produced the formation of sects — cathari and albigenses, waldenses etc.
Kafaros and Albigenses. In the 11th and especially in the 12th centuries, the West saw the appearance of many sects. They were called various names — manicheos, bulgarians, publicans, weavers and others." Whereas, they called themselves kafaros, because they regarded their sect as being a true, pure church. In the south of France, they called themselves good people. During the crusades (in the 13th century) against the heretics — kafaros — in the south of France, they were called albigenses, after their center, the town Albi. The teachings of the kafaros is very similar to that of the eastern pavliquians and bogomilov. Because they were also called Bulgarians, publicans (pabliquianos) it is thought with certainty, that their sect drifted into the west from Bulgaria, which was the bogomilov's center. Its thoughts were easily accepted in the West, because they could be conveniently used in opposition to the ruling Church. The basis of the kafaros, as with bogomilov's teachings, lies in the Manichaeist dualism. Also, part of the kafars permitted absolute dualism, two beginnings — good and evil, with two creations. While the other part accepted relative dualism, believing that the introduction of evil into life on earth was by the fallen spirit. The kafaros regarded the Holy Mysteries, honoring the Cross, icons and all the formal aspects of religion, in the same way as the bogomiles. Instead of christening, they had a spiritual baptism through the laying of hands and Evangelist John’s apocryphal gospel on the individual, believing that this was how the Holy Spirit was imparted. In rejecting the Eucharist, they declared that they partook of Holy Communion daily, through the food they ate that was blessed with the prayer "Our Father." They also spurned marriage, and lived with their wives as brothers and sisters. They too rejected hierarchy and the Pope, regarding him as the antichrist. Like the bogomiles, they gave no importance to the Old Testament. Their sect was divided into listeners, believers and the chosen or complete ones. Finally, the lives of kafaros were that of strict ascetics.
Generally speaking, the kafaros sect developed essentially the practical side of dualism and not the theoretical one. Its characteristic features are — rejection of all outward church appearance and rituals, and to live directly under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. In the second half of the 12th century, being under the protection of the ruling counts and barons, the "KAFARS" grew stronger in southern France. The Popes undertook various measures to eliminate the heretics, but neither persuasion nor harsh demands achieved their aims. The temporal authorities in southern France did not give in an inch. Pope Innocent III (1198-1216) attempted fervently to convert the heretics. In 1198, he dispatched his legates with unlimited authority to the south of France. However, only Dominic — who was attached to the legation — succeeded in converting a few of the kafaros. The legates had accomplished little, and one of them was even killed. Pope Innocent then decided to raise a crusade against the heretics. The crusaders were made up of the most desperate criminals, who marched into the south of France and began to convert the heretics with fire and sword. Thus, in taking the city of Basier, some 20,000 people were slaughtered. In order to resolve the hesitancy of the crusaders, who were afraid that they may kill Catholics by mistake, the Papal legate kept crying out: "kill them, as the Lord knows His own!" For 20 years they devastated southern France until finally, they rid it of heretics. The Roman Church ensured that these heretics didn’t reappear in the future. At the Council of Toulouse (1229), strict laws were drawn up regarding the pursuit of heretics and their punishment. In 1232, Pope Gregory IX founded an inquisitorial court, which was presented to the Dominican order. In 1259, Innocent IV permitted the use of torture in the inquisitorial court.
The sect of waldenses had its beginning at the start of the second half of the 12th century by Peter Waldo a merchant from Lyons. He was a devout Christian that loved to read the Gospel, which were translated for him by two clergy. Through this reading, he became familiar with the Church of the Apostolic era, and in comparing it with the Roman Church, came to the conclusion that Rome had digressed greatly from the former. The sudden death of one of Waldo’s friends served as the motive to take a decisive step. He gave away his possessions to the poor, and in order to restore the Apostolic Church, began to roam the countryside preaching repentance and the return to the true path. Others attached themselves to him, and a whole society of itinerant preachers was formed. They were called "the poor of Lyons, the humiliated, saboteurs" (because of their footwear — sabot). Their sermons had nothing that was prejudicial. Nonetheless, the bishop of Lyons prohibited them from preaching, while in 1184, the Pope damned them because their pretensions to teach in churches was an insult to the clergy. To this, the Waldenses asserted that the only true teachers in church are those that have voluntarily accepted the ordeal of Apostolic poverty. Waldo was banished from Lyons; he preached for a long period in Italy, Germany, and finally settled in Bohemia, where he died in 1197. His followers also dispersed, some forming their own societies. Initially, the Waldenses were not prepared to leave the Church. However, when the ruling Church herself rejected them, they began to oppose her. Arming themselves against her, they reached the point of rejecting her hierarchy in general, and consequently, their performance of divine services. Thus, they rejected Papacy, the right of the clergy to release from sin and Confession in general, Holy Communion etc. Furthermore, they ceased to revere icons and holy relics and thereby, instead of re-establishing the Apostolic Church, the partially attached themselves to the "KAFARS." In life, they were people of high morals. By drawing exclusively on the gospel, they wanted to fulfil literally all the Savior's commandments. Consequently, they rejected all forms of self-protection, wars, oath of allegiance etc. Even the Catholics responded favorably of their lifestyle. Attempts by Pope Innocent III to have the Waldenses return to the Church and convert their society into an order of poverty failed, as their divisions with the Church were too great.
General Dissatisfaction with the Roman Church.
The appearance of sectarian societies in the West, reflected the strong protest against the depravity of the Roman church. However, between the 11th and 15th centuries, the sectarians were not the only ones to arise against the deficiencies that ruled the church. There were many dissatisfied individuals of all levels in the Christian society in the West with the then prevailing situation. However, they didn’t separate themselves from the church but only demanded reformation. When abuse by the papacy and clergy reached its limits, the demands for reform became more insistent. Papacy especially became hated, having converted the church into a human kingdom. In the 14-15 centuries — Emperors with their governments, and intellectuals, bishops, clergy and the people — demanded in the name of the Gospel and Apostolic Christianity, that there be a church reform in the leadership and its members. They demanded from the Pope, that he abandon his secular power and confine himself to spiritual authority only — to be used without force and with discretion within the confines of church laws. The introduction of strict discipline among the hierarchy and clergy, and improvement in their morals was also demanded. There were calls for the elimination of indulgences as well as cleansing the teachings of their scholastic excrescence's. There were also demands for the spread of religious education among the people and the restoration of piety within the church etc..
Such reforms were thoroughly enunciated in the writings of educated theologians, proving their essentiality. The center of the reform movement was located in a Paris university. It was from this university that the champions of reform emerged — Chancellor of the university, John Jerson (died 1429), university rector Nicholas von Clemange (died 1440) and others. Naturally, the Popes didn’t want to know about any reforms. This prompted governments and even some private individuals, to undertake their own efforts. The government aimed to achieve this through reformatory councils of — Pisa, Constance and Basle. Private figures, like John Wycliffe in England, John Huss in Bohemia and Savonarola in Italy, all relied on the assistance of the intellectuals and the masses. However, endeavors remained just that — endeavors. The western Christian society was still under the influence of papal might, and was afraid to make the decisive step. On the other hand, centuries-old papal experience gave them an opportune chance to destroy the plans for reformation. Nevertheless, all these endeavors paved the way toward real reformation.
The English theologian, John Wycliffe (1324-84) emerged with his reformatory ideas in the latter half of the 14th century. The situation was favorable to him. During the reign of Edward the III, the English government had begun to gradually free itself from papal tutelage, and therefore looked favorably upon its opponents. Wycliffe began in 1356 with the publication of his work "about the last days of the Church." Then during the confrontation of (1360), between Oxford university and impoverished monks, he began to orally and in writing argue that monasticism was insolvent. When the government refused to pay the papal tribute, Wycliffe came out in defense of the government. This earned him a professorship and doctorate at Oxford university.
In 1374, commissioned by the government and in the company of others traveled, he traveled to Avignon for talks with the Pope. Here, he came face to face with the corruptness of the papacy and upon his return, began to preach that the Pope is an "antichrist." In his attacks, Wycliffe began to reject the priesthood, arguing that it’s not the consecration that is the basis of their right to control and celebrate Divine Services, but the piety of individuals. This gave the impoverished monks the opportunity to accuse him of heresy. In 1378, a court was convened by Pope Gregory the XI to judge Wycliffe. Due to the protection of the English government, he was found guiltless, having satisfied the court with his explanations.
This coincided with the papal split. Wycliffe renewed his attacks and began to completely reject the bishopric authority. He proposed to re-establish the "apostolic Presbyterian order." He fully rejected Holy Tradition, teachings on purgatory and indulgences. He recognized the Gospel as the only norm of religious doctrine. He regarded Chrismation as not essential, oral confession as a violation of conscience, proposing that an inner penitence before God is sufficient. In the Mystery of the Eucharist, he recognized Christ’s spiritual and not His actual presence.
He argued about the necessity of having full simplicity in Divine Services, proposed the allowance of priests to marry, and abolish the monastic order, or at least regard the monks on the same level as laymen. In general, Wycliffe strove to limit all means of contact between God and man, and regarded salvation as being dependent upon the personal relationship between man and the Redeemer. He founded an order of pious men for the dissemination of religious teachings and Evangelical sermons to the people. He began to translate the Gospel into English.
Once again persecutions re-commenced against him. In 1382, a council in London condemned 24 areas of his teachings as heretical. King Richard the II could protect only Wycliffe himself, who retired from Oxford to his parish at Lutterworth, where he later died. Shortly before his death, Wycliffe wrote a treatise in which he outlined his thoughts on reform. As a result, he was condemned at the councils of Rome (1412) and Constance (1415). He left followers not only from the ordinary people, but from the highest class of society. They were called heretical Lollards. Under papal pressure, the English government refused them sympathy, and even assisted the church in their persecutions against them and they soon lost their significance. However, Wycliffe’s ideas sent out deep roots in England, as in many other countries.
John Huss was a professor of theology in a Prague university in Bohemia. While Wycliffe reached a point of rejecting a great deal that was significant in religion, Huss on the other hand, in revolting against the evil practices of the Roman church, remained firm on the basics of the church, and even more — he was a defender of the early Orthodoxy. He was born in 1369, in Husinec that was located in Southern Bohemia; he received his education in a Prague university, where from 1398 he taught theology. There was talk of regeneration of the church even in Bohemia. It was there in the 14th century that a desire arose for the restoration of early Orthodoxy, which was preached in that region by Saints Cyril and Methodius. Divine Services in Slavonic language and the partaking of Holy Sacraments under both guises, formed the foremost desire of the Bohemians.
In occupying the professorial chair, John Huss became a passionate champion for church reform, in the sense of returning to her early Orthodoxy. In 1402, he took up the post of preacher in a Bethlehem chapel (private church). In his sermons in Slavonic language, he taught the people faith and life according to the Gospel, which in turn forced him to make sharp criticisms of the Catholic priests and monks. Familiarizing himself with Wycliffe’s writings, he sympathized with them, but did not share their extreme views. The upholders of Latinism began to accuse Huss of Wycliffe’s heresy.
Shortly after, there was a confrontation. Two theologians — followers of Wycliffe — arrived in Prague and presented to paintings. One depicted Christ, wearing a thorny crown and walking with His disciples toward Jerusalem — the other, the Pope wearing a three-sided golden crown and walking toward Rome, accompanied by his cardinals. Discussions commenced with the Bohemians having one voice, while the Germans and Poles, three. Not sanctioning the Anglican split from the church, Huss expressed his opposition to papacy in a spirit maintained by Wycliffe. Impelled by their nationalism, the foreign professors were against Huss. In 1408, they compiled some conclusions, in which they condemned 44 of Wycliffe’s opinions. However, in 1409, Huss received a decree from king Wenceslas, which presented the Bohemian university members with the majority of voices. Soon after, the Bohemians with Huss as their head, commenced to decisively speak out against the Roman church.
The archbishop of Prague then came out against Huss. He sent a report to Rome, which in 1410, replied with a bull, directing that all of Wycliffe’s works be burned and his followers be brought to trial. It was also forbidden for them to preach in private churches. Huss appealed to the Pope, pointing out the many truths in Wycliffe’s teachings; he continued to preach in the Bethlehem chapel. The Pope demanded his presence in Rome. Owing to the intercession of the king and the university, the Huss affair ended peacefully in Prague.
Soon after, in organizing a crusade against his enemies, Pope John XXIII sent a bull to Bohemia in which he granted a full indulgence to all crusaders. Huss rose against it in sermons and articles, while Jerome of Prague burnt the Papal bull. They people were on their side: unrest began. In 1413, a new bull followed, which excommunicated Huss from the Church and carried an interdictum against Prague. Huss wrote an appeal to the Lord Jesus Christ Himself, hoping to find justice on earth. At the same time, he published an article titled "About the Church," where he argued that a true church must consist of believers. As the Pope had digressed from the Faith, he was no longer a member of the Church and his excommunication is of no importance. However, the archbishop of Prague was successful in forcing Huss out of Prague.
In 1414 the Council of Constance convened. As a result of his former appeals to the Ecumenical Council, Huss’s presence was demanded in Constance. Emperor Sigismund even issued him a protective edict. Having arrived in Constance, Huss had to wait a long time to be interrogated, after which he was immediately arrested. The Emperor didn’t wish to insist on his release. The Council was annoyed over Huss’s demand that they prove him wrong in his thinking, based on the Gospel. This was regarded as heresy. The Council only sought to curb the Pope’s arbitrary powers while viewing all other matters with a narrow point of view. The future of Huss was not determined immediately, because the Council was dealing with the matter regarding John XXIII. Interrogation of Huss took place in prison. After 7 months, he was summoned to the solemn sitting of Council so that his matter can be concluded. He continued to insist on being shown his errors, based on the Gospel. The Council recognized him as a heretic and condemned him to be burned at the stake. On the 6th July, 1415, Huss died at the stake.
Jerome of Prague, who arrived with Huss, was also burned at the stake in 1416 after a lengthy incarceration.
However, the reformist movement in Bohemia didn’t end. After Huss’s death, the Bohemians, who had supported Huss before and after the Council sitting, revolted en masse against the Roman Church. Huss’s followers (Husseites) — with his permission — introduced a dual Holy Communion. While the Constance Council rejected this as heresy, the Bohemians decided to defend this with force of arms. Many citizens and nobility joined the Husseites. John Zizka became their leader. He and 40,000 of his adherents fortified themselves on a mountain, which he named Tabor. In the Czech language, a fortified camp is called Tabor, hence they began to call themselves Taborites. They were the left-wing part of the Husseite movement. Their religious element was evident in divine services, where the clergy took confessions, preached and gave Holy Communion in two forms. They practiced brotherly, communal dining and strived to maintain moral purity.
At the same time, nationalistic and social questions had immense significance within the movement. The Taborites aimed at eliminating German rule and establishing a self-sufficient and independent Czech nation. The lower classes were imbued with hatred toward the Catholic clergy, who lived in luxury while burdening them with tithes and taxes. As an example, the archbishop of Prague owned 900 villages and many towns, which equaled possessions those of a king. The Taborites, living in their mountain and harboring hatred toward the clergy and the affluent classes, destroyed many churches, and carried out many discreditable acts. Their ideal was a democratic republic, rejecting secular and spiritual hierarchy.
When Wenceslas — king of Bohemia — died in 1419, the Bohemians refused to swear allegiance to the new emperor Sigismund, because he betrayed Huss. All of Bohemia upraise against him. Pope Martin V, sent a number of armed crusades against them, which achieved nothing. The Bohemians were successful in repelling these attacks. Victories of Procopius the Great -their second leader — created great fear among the bordering nations. This situation continued until the convening of the Basle Council in 1431, where it was decided to attempt a reconciliation between the Husseites and Rome. By this time the Husseites had divided into two parties. The more moderate party, which was against extreme views, agreed to the reconciliation under certain conditions — the retention of dual Holy Communion, sermons to be in their native tongue, the clergy denied of church possessions and that they be subjected to a stern church court. These Husseites were also called the "followers of the chalice" and Utraquists. The other Husseites — Taborites — having reached a stage of fanatic hatred, made additional demands of iconoclasm, abolition of Confession etc.. In response to an invitation from the Basle Council in 1433, the Husseites sent a delegation of 300 men. Prolonged meetings didn’t produce any results, so the Husseites departed for home. The Council sent a deputation after them with a compromise offer. The Council was prepared to the 4 demands of the Chaliceites, who in turn joined the Church. However, in 1462, Pope Pius II declared all these concessions as null and void. Following this, the Chaliceites performed the dual Holy Communion clandestinely. Even after Basle Council’s concessions, the Taborites remained irreconcilable enemies of the Roman Church. Having suffered a savage defeat in 1434 — from the Catholic forces — they were forced to calm down. Around 1450, the remaining Taborites formed a small order under the heading of bohemian or moravian brothers, which renounced arms and strove to lead their lives according to the strict teachings of the Gospel. In the 16th century, it began to spread and achieved the same level of importance as other religious orders, which appeared after reformation.
Attempts to bring about Church reform appeared even in Italy, close to the Papal throne. In Florence, a Dominican monk — Girolamo Savonarola — emerged as a Church reformer. He led a disciplined life but was a zealous and captivating individual.
During his time, the so-called renaissance of the sciences and the epoch of humanism in Italy, began an intense study of ancient pagan classics among the Italians, which reflected destructively on their spiritual outlook. The mixture of pagan and Christian outlooks, brought society to a new classical paganism. Religious understanding was so entangled in Rome that Christ was often confused with Mercury and the Madonna with Venus. Religious ceremonies were performed in honor of Virgil, Plato and Aristotle. Even the cardinals and bishops viewed the Gospel as some sort of Greek mythology. The spread of unbelief, associated with the lowering of morals among the Popes, clergy and society in general, prompted Savonarola to take the path of reform activity.
Jerome (Girolamo) Savonarola was born in 1425, in a town named Ferrara. He was a descendant of an ancient family of Padua. His grandfather was a renowned physician. His father was preparing Jerome for a medical career and tried to give him a comprehensive upbringing. Early in his life, the quiet and pensive youth displayed an ascetic beginning, a love for contemplation and a deep religious feeling. The then prevailing situation in Italy deeply distressed Savonarola. A combination of an unsuccessful romance and an attraction toward theological works, especially Thomas Aquinas, brought him to a decision to enter a monastery. In 1475, he fled secretly from the family home to a Dominican monastery in Bologna. There, he led a austere life, gave away his money, donated his books (leaving the Bible for himself) to the monastery, fortified himself against the excesses of the monastery and devoted his spare time to studying patristic heritage. It was here that he wrote his poetical work "About the fall of a church," where he pointed out that people didn’t have their prior purity, scholarship or Christian love, and the main reason for that was the decadence of the Popes. The father superior entrusted him with teaching novices and to preach. He was sent to preach in Ferrara, then in Florence where he became celebrated as an erudite at the monastery of San Marco. Because his sermons were less successful, he left for a small township to improve this deficiency. He later captivated his parishioners with his sermons.
In 1490, he was summoned to Florence by its governor, the renowned Lorenzo Medici. Once again Savonarola took up teaching in the monastery of San Marco. His fame as a preacher grew. The monastery used to swell with laymen that came to listen. In 1490, he delivered his famous sermon in which he expressed his firm opinion that it was imperative to renovate the Church immediately, otherwise Italy will be struck down with God’s wrath. He asserted that like the ancient prophets, he is just relaying God’s commands, at the same time he censured the corrupt morals of the Florentines, not being coy with his choice of words. Because some of his prophecies came true — death of Pope Innocent, invasion by the French king etc — his influence increased. His kind and sincere treatment of the brothers made him the monastery favorite, and in 1491, he was elected as father superior of San Marco.
He immediately placed himself in an independent position with Lorenzo Medici, who was forced to take it into account. After his renowned sermon against the extravagance of women’s ornaments, they ceased to wear them to church. Often, under the influence of his sermon, merchants returned profits that they acquired unfairly. He declared: "The power of Italy’s sins are making me a prophet." Through his writings, it can be seen that he was convinced in his "divine calling," and the people believed in his prophecies. When Peter Medici became governor of Florence and the infamously immoral Alexander VI Borgia — Pope, Savonarola’s warnings became sharper. At one time — as a consequence of being banned to preach by the governor — he quit Florence. Upon returning, he undertook monastery reform. He sold monastery possessions, banned extravagance, and forced all the monks to work. In order to achieve preaching success among the heathens, Savonarola founded teaching chairs in Greek, Jewish, Turkish and Arab languages.
Pope Alexander attempted to attract Savonarola to his side, at first offering him the archbishop’s seat of Florence, then a cardinal’s cap. However, rejecting these offerings from the pulpit, Savonarola started to fulminate against the papal dissoluteness. During France’s king Charles VIII entry into Italy and the expulsion of Peter Medici from Florence, Savonarola became its true overlord. He restored republican establishments and carried out a variety of political and social reforms. Through his proposal, the Great Council — reinstated anew — replaced the land tax with an income tax, and freed borrowers from their debts. Decisive measures were undertaken against usurers and money-changers. Savonarola proclaimed Jesus Christ to the Senior and to the King of Florence, while remaining in the eyes of the people as Christ’s chosen one. He also attempted to transform Florence morally. In 1494, a strong transformation was already noticeable: the Florentines began to fast, attend church, and the women stopped wearing expensive adornments. The streets resounded to the singing of Psalms instead of songs and only the Bible was read. Many eminent people isolated themselves in the monastery of San Marco. He nominated sermons during the hours of ballet and masquerades; the people flocked to him. Savonarola decreed that sacrilegists have their tongues torn out and the debauchers — burned alive. Inveterate gamblers were punished with huge fines. He had his own spies.
The people on Savonarola’s side were common people, a party of "whites" that were called "weepers." The ones opposing him were called "the possessed" — followers of the aristocratic republican rule, and the "gray," who supported Medici. In his sermons, Savonarola didn’t spare anyone and as a consequence had many enemies among the lay, as well as the clergy. On a number of occasions, preachers emerged opposing him; the Pope banned him from preaching. However, his fame spread beyond the boundaries of Italy. His sermons were translated into foreign languages, even in Turkish for the sultan. Strong intrigues were maintained by Peter Medici. Savonarola’s enemies turned the Pope against him, who invited him to Rome; but he refused to come due to illness, and continued his sermons of censure. The Dominicans, appointed by the Pope to examine the substance of his sermons, found no grounds to accuse Savonarola of heresy. The Pope, once again, tried unsuccessfully to offer him the purple robes of a cardinal.
Enjoying a popularity, strengthened through the saving of Livorno that was besieged by the emperor — which was predicted by him and defended by his faithful "VALORI" — Savonarola decided to strike a decisive blow against "the possessed." He organized a squad of boys who, barged into eminent homes to see if the 10 commandments were being fulfilled, ran around the city confiscating playing cards, dice, secular books, flutes, perfumes etc. after which there was a ceremonial burning of these items in the city square. Secular books on humanism and classical antiquities were irreconcilable enemies to Savonarola. He even argued about the evil of the sciences in general. A society of degenerate youths was formed, who tried to kill him.
On the 12th May, 1497, having labeled the teachings of Savonarola as "suspicious," Pope Alexander VI excommunicated him from the Church. However, Savonarola refused to submit to this command and issued "an epistle against the falsely obtained bull of excommunication." At the same, he issued his work " Triumph of the Cross," where he defends the true Catholic faith and explains the dogmas and mysteries of the Catholic Church. On the last day of the carnival in 1498, Savonarola performed a triumphant liturgy and "the burning of the anathema." The Pope demanded he stand trial in Rome so that he may be imprisoned; threatened the whole of Florence with an interdict and excommunication of everyone who listens to Savonarola. However, the latter continued to preach, arguing the essentiality of convening an ecumenical Council as the Pope may be in error. After the Pope’s second decree — "breve" — the Florence authorities, signoria banned Savonarola from preaching.
On 18th of march 149, Savonarola bid farewell to the people. He wrote "A letter to the emperors," in which he urged them to convene an ecumenical council so as to dismiss the Pope. The letter to the French king Charles was intercepted and ended up in the Pope’s hands. The Florentines were worried. In order to test the righteousness of Savonarola’s teachings, a "God’s trial" was appointed — trial by fire. This was a trap organized by Savonarola’s enemies — "the possessed" and Franciscans. On the 7th of April. Savonarola and a Franciscan monk had to walk through fires. However, this never occurred. Disillusioned in their prophet, the people started to accuse him of cowardice. The following day, the monastery of San Marco was besieged by an irate mob. Savonarola and his friends were imprisoned.
The Pope appointed an investigative committee of 17 individuals, selected from the party of "the possessed." Savonarola’s interrogation and abuse was conducted in the most barbarous manner. They abused him 14 times a day, forcing him to contradict himself; through interrogation and threats compelled him to acknowledge that everything he preached were lies and deception. Savonarola was still able to write a final work. At the request of his jailer, his last work "Guidance in a Christian life," was written a few hours before his death on a cover of a book. On the 23rd of May 1498, in the presence of a large crowd, Savonarola was hanged and his body burned.
Savonarola’s teachings were vindicated by Pope Paul IV (1555-59), while in the 17th century, a church service was created in his honor. However, his activities evoke divided opinions. Some idealize his honesty, candor and broad plans, and see him as a reformer that exposed the corruptness of the Church. Others argue that he lived with ideas of the middle-ages; that he didn’t create a new church, but retained a strong Catholic essence; that in emerging initially as a reformer, he intermingled politics into his work and appeared as a demagogue, which is what brought about his downfall.
Reform Movements in Germany. Lutheranism.
The general dissatisfaction with the Roman Church and endeavors toward its reformation in the 14th and 15th centuries, was decided in the 16th century by the so-called reformation. It began in Germany with the emergence of Martin Luther — an Augustinian friar — who was the founder of a new religious order in the West.
Luther descended from poor parents that were peasants. He was born in 1483 and received his education in Erfurt university. Being a zealous Catholic and religiously disposed, he entered an Augustinian Erfurt monastery in 1505, where he led an ascetic life. He began to study the teachings of the Scripture, works of Augustine and the middle-age mystics. He became a priest in 1507, while in 1508 he relocated to Wittenberg where he took up a post as a professor at the university. In 1510 Luther undertook a trip to Rome on matters relating to the order. The dissolute life of the papal court of Leo X, disbelief and blasphemy among the clergy, all brought about an upheaval in his convictions. Imbued with the knowledge of his own sinfulness, he strived to attain absolution from God with the help of the Church and its means (deeds of self-denial). Now, he began to think that the Church and the hierarchy that he witnessed in Rome, were incapable of giving this to people. Under the influence of Augustine’s writings and the mystics, he became convinced that only a personal contact with and faith in the Redeemer may justify a human being.
In 1517, requiring finances to sustain his extravagant lifestyle, Pope Leo X resorted to selling indulgences. A Dominican monk Tezel — an agent of the archbishop of Mainz — appeared in Wittenberg and began to sell indulgences in a shop, just like a market trader. Outraged by this sacrilege of the release of sins, he compiled 95 theses against indulgences, and on deeds that are above those that are required, as well as on purgatory. According to tradition of those times, he presented his theses in the church of a Wittenberg castle, and challenged Tezel to a debate. Tezel and his supporters accepted the challenge. Luther’s theses and the controversy attracted a universal interest in other cities in Germany. Luther received much support and the Saxon koorfurst Frederick the Wise.
Initially the Pope regarded the encounter between Luther and the Dominicans as an ordinary argument, albeit unpleasant to him, among monastic orders, and only wished for it to cease. In 1518, he summoned Luther to Rome. When koorfurst and the university demanded this be resolved immediately, the Pope referred the matter for resolution to cardinal Gaetano. Arriving at Augsburg, the cardinal took the side of Luther’s opponent and superciliously demanded renouncement of his ideas. Luther refused. Another authorized agent from the Pope acted in a different manner. He punished Tezel thereby letting Luther know that he was on his side. Furthermore, he convinced him to write a letter to the Pope, indicating his obedience, to which Luther complied, promising not to raise any arguments if his opponents did likewise. Meanwhile, in 1519, a professor Johann Eck of Ingolstadt university entered into a dispute with one of Luther’s students, and eventually with Luther himself. The dispute now widened to include the question of the Pope’s primacy. The adversaries remained with their own convictions although in Germany, the empathy for Luther strengthened. Another Wittenberg professor — Philip Melanchthon — joined him. He was an authority on the Jewish and Greek languages, and participated actively in the reformation. All the free-thinking people in Germany (humanists) were also on Luther’s side, who became bolder after the dispute and decidedly went down the path of reformation, not having any dealings with papacy. In 1520, he published an appeal to "the Imperial Highness and Christian knighthood of the German nation," in which he invited everyone to reject the papal yoke. The appeal spread throughout the whole of Germany and created a strong impression.
The Latin theologians informed Pope Leo X that the dispute aroused by Luther, was posing a serious danger to the Church. This forced the Pope to act more harshly. In 1520, he issued a bull, which subjected Luther — as a heretic — to excommunication, and all his works to the flames. This bull did not realize the expected reaction. Luther’s works were burned in a few towns only. Luther responded to the general Council with an "appellation" and a treatise "against antichrist’s bull." The actual bull itself was publicly burned by Luther. In 1520, the Pope damned him as an unrepentant heretic, and requested the German Emperor, Carl V (1519-56) to banish him. Although Carl favored this, because of the wishes of the Germany’s knights, he decided to examine the matter at the imperial diet in Worms (1521).
Present at this assembly were a number of Pope’s legates as well as many supporters of reform. Occupying a prominent position among them was the elector Frederick the Wise of Saxony. At the insistence of Luther’s supporters, he was invited to the diet for his explanation, even though the legates protested against this, pointing out that he was excommunicated from the Church. At one of the sittings, Luther was shown his works and suggested that he renounce them. However, he was resolute and in his own defense stated that the only time he will do this is if his teachings are refuted on the basis of the Gospel and clear deductions. Consequently, the diet released Luther without making any decision against him. It was only at the end of the sitting — when many of adherents of reform had left — and for political reasons in maintaining good relations with the Pope, that the emperor passed a decree, which denied Luther and his followers protection of the law and were condemned to banishment. Anticipating this to happen, the Saxon elector had earlier organized to hide Luther in a remote castle at Wartburg. Moreover, nobody in Germany worried about fulfilling the Worms edict. In Wartburg, Luther spent most of his time in translating the Bible into German.
At the same time, while Luther was in isolation, the reform movement in Wittenberg — with Melanchthon’s participation — continued. A complete rift with the Roman Church eventuated — private church services were abolished, priests entered into marriage, monks were abandoning their monasteries etc. Some of the Luther’s more zealous followers, reached such a stage where they forcibly stopped church services, threw out icons from churches etc. So-called prophets from Zwickau appeared in the city of Zwickau who subsequently crossed over into Wittenberg. In the name of direct revelations, they preached the overthrow of all church and civil order. As soon as he became are of this, Luther hurried to Wittenberg and through his sermons, succeeded in subduing the unrest — at least in that city. In other parts of Germany, religious turmoil still persisted and assumed a political character, having evoked a big movement — the peasants’ war.
The German emperor was engaged in a war against the French, while the nobles, themselves disgruntled with the Roman Church, were sympathetic to the new church directions. The papal legates lost all authority in Germany and were ignored by everyone. Luther and Melanchthon continued unimpeded to spread the new viewpoint, explaining the basis of the teachings and strengthening the reform movement. In 1521, Melanchthon published his work, in which he simply and clearly outlined the new religious doctrine. In 1522, Luther published his translation of the New Testament for general use. This new doctrine contained many thoughts that were reminiscent of the reformation’s predecessors, especially Wycliffe’s, and formed a complete antithesis to Catholicism. In rejecting the deviation and abuses of Catholicism, he also rejected all its truths. By taking the basic position that a person is justified through faith alone in the Redeemer (which is a gift from God) and a personal communion with Him, Luther rejected all the means concerning salvation — Church, hierarchy and Mysteries.
According to Luther’s teachings, the Church is not the treasury of gifts of grace but a society of similar believers in Christ. Hierarchical services are superfluous as everyone carries out his own salvation. "Priesthood" belonged to everyone. Therefore, he replaced the hierarchy with ordinary officials — teachers, preachers, their supervisors, as well giving higher duties to individuals with civil authority. Luther looked upon Mysteries as pious customs. He permitted Holy Communion, believing in the presence of Christ, although not explaining His presence. He rejected the act of transubstantiation. He also rejected the heavenly intercessors, the veneration of saints, their relics and bowing to icons, as well as the holy Tradition. Recognizing the Holy Gospel only, he presented his interpretation and understanding of it to every faithful. Luther established a new religious society, which received the name Lutheranism.
Roman-Catholic Church Politics.
Guarding of Orthodox Faithful from Roman Propaganda.
The Latin propaganda in the Eastern Church after the fall of Constantinople. If some Byzantine emperors campaigned for the Unia, then it was their own personal matter as they didn’t allow any direct Latin propaganda. After the fall of Byzantine, the Latinos resorted to the most dishonorable methods of dissemination in the Orthodox East.
At the end of the 15th and beginning of the 16th centuries, their propaganda was still feeble because the Lateens were forced to battle against protestantism. The propaganda went on only in the southern parts of Peloponnesus and Albania, as well as on the Mediterranean islands that belonged to Venice. In 1480, Patriarch Maxim the Philosopher, communicated with the Venetian doge, asking him to safeguard the Orthodox Christians on the island Crete, from pretensions of the Latin clergy. In 1484, Simon his successor convened a council, which condemned the Florentine Unionism in order to warn the Orthodox faithful. The forceful extent to which the Latin propaganda resorted to can be seen in the following: in the beginning of the 16th century, a "Latinised" Greek, Deacon Arsenius, appeared in a Peloponnetian town of "MONEMVASIUS," and with the aid of the Peloponnetian authorities, expelled the Orthodox Metropolitan and occupied his place. Patriarch Pachomius excommunicated him from the Church, after which Arsenius fled the city, fearing the disquiet among the people.
Pope Gregory XIII (1572-85) distinguished himself with his determination. In 1577 in Rome, for propaganda purposes, he created a collegiate for Greek youths, while in 1581, he opened a church in the name of Blessed Athanasius so that church services could be held in the Greek language. As the collegiate had huge resources, education and sustenance were free to its students. Consequently, it was always overcrowded with Greeks. Although there were no demands on the students to adopt Latinism as they were given the freedom to chose their faith, all tutoring was done in a Catholic spirit. Because of this, often the Greek youths remained Orthodox in name only, while some openly became Uniates or Catholics. Upon their return to their homeland, the spread the Latin propaganda.
With the formation of the jesuit order in 1540, Pope Gregory XIII charged them with operating in the East. In 1583, he sent there a Jesuit mission with huge resources. With the assistance of envoys from Catholic states, the Jesuits received permission from Turkish rulers to settle even in Constantinople. As everywhere else, the Jesuits turned their attention toward education, charity and sermons. Naturally, their intrigues commenced. In 1600, in Constantinople (in Galate) they established a collegiate, opened schools, orphanages, hospitals, hospitality centers etc. This attracted part of the Orthodox inhabitants. At the same time, works against the Eastern Church were written and Catholic catechisms were circulated. In Rome, Orthodox books were republished with Latin changes and circulated — as though they were authentic — among the Orthodox faithful.
Among the Patriarchs that battled with the Jesuit propaganda, Jeremiah II and Meletius Pigas were the more renowned. Through teachings and sermons, they attempted to expose the Latin propaganda. Apart from this, at the 1583 council, Patriarch Jeremiah rejected the so-called Gregorian new calendar, named after Pope Gregory XIII. As a result of dissension in the Patriarchate — after the death of Patriarch Jeremiah (1584) — the Jesuits were able to consolidate their position. They were even able to attract Patriarch Raphael II (1603-07) to their side, who conferred the authority over the metropolis to a uniate, through whom he maintained suspicious correspondence with Rome.
However in the 1720’s, the renowned and zealous fighter — Patriarch Cyril Lucaris — emerged against the Jesuits being well versed in the Jesuits intrigues in Western Russia. He began to send out pastoral epistles, in which he exposed the Latinos, calling for the faithful not to have anything in common with them. With the help of huge sums of money, the enraged Jesuits were twice able to bribe the vizier and secure Cyril’s dethroning (1623), and thereupon, his banishment. His place was taken by the Jesuit’s nominee, Gregory. However, he and his successor Anthimus didn’t last very long. The English king’s envoy relayed to the sultan his request that Cyril be reinstated (1624), who again continued his efforts against the Latin propaganda. The Jesuits attempted to lure him to their side and when this failed, they again bribed the grand vizier. Cyril’s patrons, Dutch and English envoys also presented the same amount as offered by the Jesuits and Cyril remained at his cathedra. The Jesuits then accused Cyril of publishing literature aimed against Muslims. As a consequence, the authorities destroyed his printing press while its supervisor Metaxa, fled to safety. Cyril was forced to hide in the house of the Dutch envoy. The Swedish, English and Dutch envoys demanded of the Turkish authorities that they investigate the matter. It turned out that the book cited by the Jesuits was published by Cyril a long time ago, in London, and that his subsequent publications contained nothing significant that was anti-Muslim. It was resolved that the Jesuit intrigues were providing only unrest to the Turkish authorities. As a consequence, the authorities ordered that the Jesuits be banished from all Turkish towns. Only two Jesuits were left with the church of the French envoy. However, the Jesuits succeeded another several times to unseat Cyril. In 1637, Cyril was reinstated for the fifth time. In 1638, during the absence of the sultan Murad IV, news arrived of the Cossacks taking Azov were now nearing Constantinople. The jesuits convinced the grand vizier that this was the Patriarch’s fault for calling the Cossacks. This was relayed to the Sultan, who ordered that Cyril be tried. Under the guise of being exiled, Cyril was taken aboard a ship, where he was strangled and his body flung into the sea.
Through the jesuit’s intrigues, the same fate was met by Patriarch Parthenius I — thrown overboard, and Parthenius III — strangled.
However, the subsequent Patriarch Parthenius IV (1657-60) was quite successful in his struggle with the Jesuits. With the permission of the authorities, he issued an admonitory decree for the destruction of the book "Shield of faith," which was brought in by the Jesuits from France.
In the 17th century, so as to help the Jesuits, the Pope sent them other religious orders. In 1622, an association was established in Rome by Pope Adrian VI for the dissemination of the Catholic faith. It, parenthetically, had to concern itself with the establishment of missions in the East. In the 17th and 18th centuries, there was an influx into the Turkish empire of missionaries-monks from various religious orders. Monasteries and schools were built. Open sermons were conducted in cities and settlements, which were accompanied with the disbursement of money. It was falsely asserted that the Constantinople Church was as one with the Roman one. The Orthodox faithful began to be confused, especially in Antioch. Because of this, Constantinople’s Patriarch Jeremiah III, Antioch’s Athanasius and Jerusalem’s Chrysanthus were forced to convene a Council in Constantinople. At this Council, the Latin spirit of propaganda was exposed and 8 instances of Latin false teachings condemned: primacy of the Pope, leavened bread, purgatory, fast on Saturday, refusing infants Holy Communion and others. The Council’s resolution was distributed in Greek and Arabic throughout the whole East.
The Latin propaganda had only a limited success. During the Turkish rule, many Orthodox faithful were drawn away — mainly into the uniate church. A number of dioceses were established, hierarchs appointed and even some patriarchs. However, this was still a long way away from the Orthodox East being Catholicised. The ones that had been drawn away, represented a small number when compared to the general mass of Orthodox faithful, and by their nature, embodied the worst members of the Church. The Latin bishops exist primarily for the Catholic colonies that remained after the crusades, as well as those that settled there consequently. The Latin propaganda didn’t bring the Catholics and the Orthodox closer. On the contrary, it intensified the Orthodox animosity toward them.
Latin Endeavors to Secure Holy Places in Palestine.
After the Arab conquest of Jerusalem by Caliph Omar in 638, its holy places in Palestine naturally remained under the Orthodox rule, as at that time the Latinos hadn’t separated from the Church. During the Crusades, the holy places were seized by the Latinos and even the Patriarch was banished. When in 1187, Sultan Saladin removed Jerusalem from the Crusaders, he returned the holy places to the Orthodox and reinstated the Patriarch. When the Turkish sultan Selim I conquered Palestine in 1517, he too confirmed the rights of the Orthodox faithful. Consequently, right from the beginning, the authority over the holy places — confirmed by every conqueror — belongs to the Orthodox Church. The latter had always permitted all heterodox religions, not excluding Catholics, to worship and perform their church services. To this end, they had their own altars in the cathedral of Christ’s Resurrection.
However, the Latinos wanted to seize all the holy places. In the 16th century, during the reign of Suleiman (1520-66), on Great Saturday, all the Orthodox monks from Bethlehem went to Jerusalem, leaving one keeper of the image-lamps. He too left, leaving the keys to the Holy Grotto with a Franciscan monk, instructing him to light the image-lamps at nightfall. The following day, the Franciscans refused to return the keys. A bribed judge resolved the matter in favor of the Latinos, and it was how the Franciscans became the keepers of the Bethlehem church. At the end of the 16th century, in order to seize Golgotha, a wealthy Western worshipper lodged 6000 golden coins with the Turkish authorities. In order to retain this holy place, Patriarch Sophronius had to pay them twice the amount. In the 1730’s, the Latinos temporarily occupied the Church of Resurrection, the Lord’s Tomb and Golgotha. They falsified documents and bribed the great vizier. With the aid of Patriarch Cyril Lucaris, Patriarch Theophan went to Constantinople, where he procured a decree, confirming the Orthodox rights over the holy places. Hereafter, the Orthodox Church also received the Bethlehem cathedral, which was taken away from it in the 16th century.
In mid 17th century, France and England emerged in aid of the Lateens. The French envoy at the Turkish court, Marquis Noantele, in going to Jerusalem in 1673, conducted various violent acts against the Orthodox faithful. However, fearing a public uproar, he didn’t achieve anything. Later (1699), in accordance with the Carl peace treaty, concluded between Austria and Turkey (with France’s assistance), Turkey was obliged to hand back the holy places to the Lateens. The Catholics destroyed the main Orthodox altar in the Resurrection cathedral, which stood before the Lord’s Tomb, threw out all the decorations, destroyed the Iconastasis in the Bethlehem church etc.. Also the Latin propaganda increased in the Jerusalem and Antiochan patriarchies. At one stage they aspired to banish all the Orthodox in general from Jerusalem.
In 1756, during Palm Sunday, they attacked Orthodox churches and robbed them of all their ornaments. Patriarch Parthenius lodged a complaint to the sultan Osman III. The authorities examined the firmans (decrees) — which determined what holy places were under the control of the Greeks and the Latinos — and found that the firmans presented by the Greeks were the most ancient. Consequently, the new firmans of 1757 returned the former rights to the Greeks to control the holy places. From that point on, the Latinos lost their primacy. In 1808, the church of Resurrection that contained the Lord’s Tomb burned down. Only the chapel of the Lord’s Tomb remained. The Turks permitted the Orthodox faithful to rebuild. Although the Catholics attempted to stop the construction, the church was erected. Furthermore, 2/3rds of the collected funds were spent on gifts to the Turkish officials. From 1811 to 1820, with the aid of Catholic diplomats, the Latinos secured exclusive control over the Lord’s Tomb and in addition, the Orthodox Church was forbidden to hold its services in the church. In 1820, this right was reinstated to the Orthodox Church. The Crimean campaign (1854-56) was provoked by Turkey -acting under the influence of France — by its persecution of the Orthodox Church that controlled the holy places. In the second half of the 19th century, a tolerable balance was established between the Orthodox and the Catholics.
New Papal Endeavors in Favor of Unionism.
Pope Pius IX, one of the outstanding heads of the Roman Church of modern times (1847-78), himself a former missionary, attempted a number of times with especial zeal to subordinate the Eastern Church to his authority, on the bases of Unionism. In 1848, he dispatched his legate to Constantinople on political matters, with an encyclical to all the Eastern Christians. In the beginning of it, the Pope addresses himself to Catholics and Uniates of the West, and then, in the words of the encyclical, — "to those, who although revere Christ, have separated themselves from communion with the throne of Apostle Peter…" Expanding effusively the Latin arguments, the Pope tried to convince Orthodox faithful to recognize the Pope’s primacy and the teachings on the emanation of the Holy Spirit from God the Son also, promising to retain all the other dogmas, practices and church services of the Orthodox Church. The epistle had no impact on the Eastern Christians. Many knowledgeable theologians of the Church, voiced their objections to the Pope’s encyclical.
On behalf of the whole Eastern church, Patriarch Anthimus VI of Constantinople, answered the Pope that communion between the Churches will be possible only after the obliteration of all the Roman Church’s innovations. At the same time, on the 6th of May 1848, all the Eastern Patriarchs published a magnificent Church epistle — signed by them and members of the Holy Synod — to all the Orthodox Christians. In it, the Patriarch articulates that the Orthodox teachings must remain unchanged; while the evil spirit has sown divisions and heresies within the Church. Among these heresies, some have disappeared and are disappearing, while some appear anew, only to fade with time. In past times, the Church had been shaken by the Arius heresy, while currently, it is being agitated by the Papal heresy. Furthermore, the epistle cites proof as to the Papacy being a heresy by enumerating all the digressions of the Roman Church; teachings of the emanation of the Holy Spirit from also God the Son, the sprinkling of water in the Mystery of Baptism instead of total immersion, the removal of the Divine chalice from the laity and giving Holy Communion in the form of bread only, the use of leavened bread, removal from Liturgy the blessing of the Holy Sacraments, removing Chrismation of infants during Baptism, forbidding priests to marry, infallibility of the Pope and the general distortion of the ancient Apostolic rites of nearly all the Mysteries. In its response to the Papal encyclical, the Church epistle was especially strong in its rejection of the teachings about the emanation of the Holy Spirit from also God the Son and the primacy of the Pope. The epistle establishes the correct understanding of those sections of the Gospel, cited by the Pope as proof of his primacy. It also subjects Church historical facts, which the Pope quotes, to a critical discernment and shows their true meaning.
After stating the fallacies of the Roman Church, the Patriarchs add: "everybody can conclude from all this, how impious, discording to the ruls is to change the Council laws, our dogmas, Liturgy and other religious rites; and on the other hand, how righteousness and decency demands the correction of this innovation, which we definitively know the time of its inclusion into the Roman Church." In conclusion, it expresses that Pope Pius’ IX encyclical is subject to condemnation, being an unholy and soul-destroying manifestation: "and it is thus declared in the Catholic Church" — end the Patriarchs.
In the beginning of 1862, Pius IX issued a bull, in which he declared the formation of a new and special "congregation of propaganda for matters of the Eastern rite," because the existing general propaganda congregation is engaged with other missions, and expends little time — necessary labors — on the Orthodox East. Among the leadership of the congregation, the Pope declared that he not only doesn’t aim to destroy the religious ceremonies and rites of the Eastern Church, but on the contrary, decrees that they be saved. In 1868, another attempt was made by Pius IX. In aiming at convening a council in Rome for deliberation of new dogmas on the papal infallibility, he sent fresh dispatches, inviting the bishops of the Eastern Church. In them, he also expressed his wish regarding their subordination to the Roman Church. The Patriarch of Constantinople, Gregory VI, even refused to receive this dispatch. Papal endeavors in contemporary times to subjugate the Eastern Church, were unsuccessful. Over the past decades, the Pope has been especially active promoting Eastern Rites where even the Orthodox Creed (Symbol of Faith) has been accepted.
Interrelationship of Papacy and Catholic Governments.
The Council of Trent and the formation of the Jesuit order, allowed — to a certain degree — the Papacy to re-establish its importance, which had been shaken by the Reformation.
After the Peace of Westphalia in 1648, which ended the lengthy struggle for religious truth, the importance of papacy in the catholic world began to fall gradually. In mid-seventeen century, the Catholic emperors began to apply principles of political individualism and balance of powers in international relations. As a result, papal interests in church politics lost all their significance to them. In the interests of the state, emperors begin to neglect general church matters, acting without regard to the wishes of Popes. In their dominions, they endeavor to stamp their authority without having to be dependent in civil or church matters.
This political direction, hostile to all theocratic pretensions of the Popes, evoked opposition from them. However, all their efforts to preserve for the Roman throne the authority of the Middle Ages, failed. The gradual curbing of papal authority and power, which began in the 17th century as a result of new political directions, continues to this day.
In the second half of the 17th century, from among all the Catholic states, France attempted with especial determination to restrict papal authority . King Louis XIV (1643-1715), although an ardent Catholic, wanted to control church matters within his kingdom independently of the Pope. He even appropriated the right to appoint bishops in those areas of France, where this right belonged to the Papal throne from ancient times. Pope Innocent IX (1678-89) declared his protest against the king’s actions, who in turn, placed the question of restrictions of the king’s and Pope’s powers in the Church, before parliament. In order to have this matter resolved, the king summoned the French clergy to a council. At the council in 1682, the clergy endeavoring to free itself from subordination to the Pope, worked out 4 positions that defined the rights of the French Church. The essence of these determinations are: 1) God did not grant Apostle Peter, nor his successors, authority in civil affairs. That’s why Church authorities cannot dismiss monarchs and grant dispensation to their subjects from their oath of allegiance and duty; 2) The French Church reaffirms the decisions of the Constance Council, which recognized the authority of an ecumenical council as being greater than that of a Pope; 3) The rights and practices, adopted by the French kingdom and Gaelic Church, must remain inviolable and 4) Papal decisions in matters of faith, receive immutable potency only when they receive consensus from the whole Church.
Having confirmed this position, Louis empower it by making it law. However, it is true that in 1693 — for political reasons — Louis was forced to allow his bishops to declare to the Pope, their rejection of the 1682 decrees. But in reality these rejections were not genuine, and the Gaelic Church, whenever it needed to — on the basis of the four situations — always rebuffed papal pretensions.
In the 18th century, the weakened papacy was forced to make more concessions to the pressures from Catholic kings. Upon their insistence, the Popes even agreed to the abolition of the Jesuit order — their main support. By the 18th century, the Jesuit Order had developed enormously. It spread throughout the whole world and took control of the upbringing of youths and church confessions. With this, it acquired enormous wealth, which was obtained partly from donors that had been artificially lured by the Jesuits, and partly from the commercial activities of the order in Europe and other parts of the world. Their main aim was not to convert heretics, but to secure dominance over all Christian societies. Their most favored means in achieving this goal was through intrigues and plots, accompanied by various types of criminal acts. Through their intrigues, they enmeshed all levels of society, beginning with the high royal courts, where the Jesuits penetrated and through which they strove to control the states and politics.
However, it’s true that from the end of the 16th century, the Jesuits were meeting ideological opposition within the Catholic world. At the end of the 16th century, a dispute arose between them and the Dominicans regarding the question of grace. Later, the Augustines and Jansenites started a quarrel with them. Beginning in 1743, the casuistic morality of the Jesuits was subjected to sharp attacks from some of the Italian Dominicans. At the time, there were many noted cardinals that were committed opponents of Jesuits. The Jesuits aggravated many other missionaries in their missionary work, resorting to immoral means in their struggle against them. Condemnations were leveled against the Jesuit’s developing trading operations, which was of a speculative nature. Dissatisfaction with them was growing. In Italy, some towns expelled the Jesuits for their behavior.
The first Catholic country to directly confront the Jesuits was Portugal. Following an agreement, concluded in 1750 between Spain and Portugal, some districts of Paraguay had to be transferred to the latter; however, the local populace under the leadership of the Jesuits, displayed armed resistance against the Portuguese authorities. Consequences ensued. Before they came to a head, an attempt on the life of Portugal’s king Joseph I was made in 1758. The Jesuits were accused of involvement in this crime, and on the 3rd of September 1759, under the initiatives of minister Pombal, a royal edict was issued banning the Jesuit order from Portugal's borders; their members were put on trial and transplanted to papal provinces.
The banishment of Jesuits from France was caused by their trading operations. In 1743, patter Lavallet established in Martinique, a trading house under the guise of a mission, and concentrated all trading with the West-Indies into his own hands. Having lost two vessels to the British, he declared himself bankrupt in 1755. As was the practice also in those days, in order to avoid huge payoffs to the victims, the Order disowned him. An investigative process began in Paris, which unearthed a series of abuses by the Order. The Paris parliament found the Order guilty and directed it to pay the debt. At the same time, a commission was formed to examine the status of the Order. In 1762, the commission published its findings; the Order was recognized as being dangerous to the state. King Louis XV offered the general of the Jesuits to include some changes to the Order’s charter, but this was rejected. In 1762, by order of the King, the Jesuits were expelled from France.
In 1767, by order of the Spanish king Carlos III, 6000 Jesuits were arrested in one day and shipped out to a Papal district. They were also expelled from Naples, and in 1768, from Parma. In 1769, the Catholic kings adamantly demanded from Pope Clement XIII (1758-69) a formal abolition of the Jesuit Order. Through the relentless requests from the Jesuits, the Pope in 1765 triumphantly confirmed the Order by a bull "Apostolicum." Crushed by the pressure of the kings, he fell ill and died soon after. The kings were able to appoint Cardinal Ganganelli as Pope, being regarded as sympathetic to their demands. However, having become Pope Clement XIV (1769-74), he too was not agreeable for a long time to the abolition of the Order. It was only on the 21st of July 1773 that he published "Dominicus ac Redemptor noster," by which the society of Jesus and all its establishments are abolished. After this, the order was abolished in Austria and the Catholic state of Germany. Naturally, the jesuits continued to function clandestinely. Pope Clement died soon after; the cause of death being attributed to poison. It is interesting to note that this Papal decree was never published in Russia and Protestant Prussia. King Frederick II the Great even enticed jesuits to undertake upbringing activities. He later lost faith in them. At the beginning of the 18th century, the Order was abolished in Prussia and the Jesuits expelled from the land.
In Russia, the jesuits had a Lithuanian vice-province, which was headed by a rector of the board of Polotzk, Stanislaw Chernevich. Initially, Empress Catherine II instructed the Byelorussian governor-general Chernishev, to carefully watch the activities of the Jesuits, who endeavored to show their trustworthiness. Following this, the Empress didn’t permit the publication of the Pope’s decree within her Empire. The Pope’s urging to have his instructions acknowledged were fruitless.
In 1801, Pope Pius VI acknowledged the existence of the Order in Lithuania and Byelorussia. It was only in 1815 that the jesuits were expelled from St. Petersburg, because it was discovered that they were spreading banned Catholic propaganda. In 1820, strong measures against them followed. Only those jesuits that entered other Orders or joined the ranks of married clergy, could remain in Russia. By this time, the Order was already restored universally. This was announced by Pope Pius VII on the 7th of August 1814 by a special bull.
In Spain and Portugal, the jesuits were first accepted, then expelled. Officially, the Order was not restored in France. However, in the restoration era and during the rule of Emperor Napoleon III, the Jesuits enjoyed an influential position. In 1880, they were banished from France. Naturally, their clandestine operations continued in all countries.
With time, other disasters followed the Order’s banishment. In Austria, Emperor Joseph II (1780-90) undertook reforms in Church administration, so that the control of external Church matters fell into government hands. At the same time, her internal workings were handed to the bishops, making papal influence on the Austrian Church virtually non-existent. In some minor German states of Catholic faith, attempts were made to establish a national Catholic church, independent of the Pope. Finally in 1789, a revolution began in France, which accompanied the downfall of papal influence not only in France but in the very papal state. During this revolution, the papacy — represented by Pius VI and Pius VII — experienced such humiliation, the likes of which she hadn’t seen since Pope Boniface VIII. In 1796, the French appeared in Italy, occupied all papal holdings and established a Roman republic (1798). Pope Pius VI (1774-99), dispossessed and humiliated, was taken prisoner to France where he died shortly after. His successor, Pope Pius VII — chosen in Vienna under the protection of Austria — was subjected to similar persecution from Napoleon I, who in 1809, transported him to France and forced him to agree to make France the perpetual seat for all Roman cardinals. It was only after Napoleon’s fall in 1814 that the Pope had the opportunity to return to Rome, while in 1815, at the Vienna congress, he had his spiritual and secular rights reinstated.
Papa Pius VII, having returned to Rome and restoring the Jesuit Order — according to the bull, these "powerful and experienced helmsmen" of the papal throne — he concentrated his attention toward the re-establishing his authority. With the open appearance of the jesuits, declarations of papal rights to dominance over all secular and spiritual matters of the world intensified. However, they found very little sympathy. At that time, among a range of European countries, aspirations of national unification and political independence prevailed. Hostile relations toward Jesuits began to heighten in Spain, Italy and France.
In Italy, this movement assumed an especially dangerous form to the papal authority. Here, in mid-nineteenth century, the various political aspirations took a definitive form — the unification of Italy under one king with Rome being the capital. This became a vital subject for the whole of the Italian people. Together with this, pronouncements began to emerge voicing opposition to the Pope’s secular authority. Finally, the Sardinian king — Victor Emmanuel — realized the people’s aspirations. In 1861, he was able to unite under his authority, small Italian states and appropriated the title of King of Italy. In 1870, he annexed the papal church domain to his united Italy and made Rome the capital of his kingdom. At that time, the Pope was the renowned Pius IX (1846-78). Unable to sustain his secular powers with a force of arms, he relinquished Rome without a struggle. However, at the same time he published an encyclical to all Catholic bishops, in which he protested against the seizure of Rome, damned and excommunicated Victor Emmanuel and his associates. Nevertheless, the anathema and excommunication didn’t change the flow of events — with the occupation of Rome by troops of united Italy, the papal church domain ceased to exist.
Having abolished the secular authority of the Pope, Victor Emmanuel I went about in a most respectable manner, to establish himself as the spiritual leader of the whole Catholic world. Pope Pius IX and his followers were offered at their disposal, the township called Leo i.e. a suburb of Rome — built in the 9th century by Pope Leo IV — which situated the Vatican and St. Peter’s cathedral. All papal palaces in and outside the city, together with their supplementary holdings, were also taken over by the king; in place of the revenue received from these properties, the Pope was granted a fixed sum of money from the state; the papal persona was declared holy and inviolable; the freedom and independence of the Pope’s primate duties were guaranteed by the king and the whole nation etc. However Pius IX didn’t want to reconcile himself with the accomplished fact, regarding himself as a prisoner in his Vatican and to the very day of his death, refused to agree with the Italian government. In 1929, Pope Pius XII concluded the Lateran Treaty with the Italian constitutional monarchy government.
Religious Directions in the Roman Church.
The following text outlines the struggle of papacy with internal enemies. These enemies were jansenism and quietism — spiritual directions that arose within the Roman Church itself and then troubled her for a considerable time. Jansenism appeared in the 17th century as a protest against the moral system of the Jesuits, which undermined all moral fundamentals but nonetheless tolerated — and even sanctioned — by the Church. By laying great emphasis on the free will of a person in matters of salvation, the Jesuits regarded sin as conscious and unforced departure from God’s commandments. However, from this they made a casuistic conclusion that if for example, habit, passion and others attract a person toward sin, then sin should not be attributed to him as he committed it apart from his free will. It was on this basis that they released people from all types of sins and crimes at confessionals.
These immoral teachings came under attack from a renowned Dutch theologian, Cornelis Jansen. He was born in 1585 and died in 1638. In 1630, he became professor of theology at Louvain university, where he lectured along strict Augustinian spirit. During this time, he had several controversial arguments with the Jesuits. In 1636, he became bishop of Ypres. Here he completed his work "Augustinus." He wrote somewhat lesser works in which he maintained polemics against the Jesuits. In 1635, he issued a pamphlet in which he condemned cardinal Richelieu for his support of the Protestants during the Thirty Year war.
Contrary to the jesuits, Jansen taught that a person’s will wasn’t free as it had been enslaved by passions and a drive toward the earthly. As a consequence, a human being is constantly subject to sin; what liberates a person from sin is not the Jesuit all-justifying and excusable confession, but grace, which cleanses the soul of its passions, awakens repentance and love toward God, and consolidates the will in goodness. According to Jansen’s teachings, it is under the effect of this grace that an essentiality arises to lead a strictly righteous life, withdrawing fully from the world with its temptations. Jansen’s work — published after his death — attracted widespread attention. In France, where there were pronounced dissatisfaction with the jesuits, it was greeted with approval. Here, supporters of Augustus and Jansen and opponents of the jesuits formed a group; its spiritual center was the women’s monastery near Paris — Port-Royal-des-Champs. The Abbe of monastery St. Cyran, Jean Duvergier de Hauranne established a Jansen community within it. The group slowly grew as many clergy, erudite, individuals from well-known families and others joined it. Many of those who joined came from the Arnaud family. Among other members, the most famous was Blaise Pascal, philosopher, physicist and mathematician. Members of the group, Jansenites, observed monastic life without any vows, dedicating themselves to prayer and labor, physical as well as (more so) writing. At the Port Royal monastery, a theological college was established, becoming a nursery for Jansenism. Its viewpoint quickly spread throughout the whole of France, and beyond its boundaries, where it was accepted always sympathetically.
After the publication of Jansen’s book in 1840, the jesuits realized the able to teachings it contained posed a great danger for their operations. Consequently, in 1843, they were able to procure its condemnation by Pope Urban VIII (1623-44). However, jansenism was not destroyed — the jansenites in France and the Netherlands, declared their objection against papal ruling, and entered into literary polemics with the jesuits. Then the jesuits outlined 5 instances out of the book and presented them to Pope Innocent X (1644-55) as being heretical. In 1653, the Pope condemned them in a special bull and sent it to France. However, the Jansenites and many French bishops lodged strong protests against the bull. They argued that the condemned instances did not exist in Jansen’s book, and when Pope Alexander VII declared — without right of appeal — that such instances really do exist in the book, they began to protest that the Pope was abusing his position of infallibility by confirming non-existent facts. The dispute continued up to 1668, when Pope Clement IX expressed his agreement to the bishops — holding to Jansen’s teachings — signing a general condemnation of those 5 instances, without mentioning that they form part of Jansen’s teachings. However, the Jesuits were not happy with this settlement, particularly as the jansenites — in their polemic writings — kept revealing with fine detail their immoral teachings, their dissolute lifestyle and all their intrigues. Consequently, they continued to alienate the Popes, as well as the French king Louis XIV. In the beginning of the 18th century, the jesuits finally achieved the persecution of the jansenites. By Louis’ decree in 1709, Port-Royal and its college were closed, while in 1713, Pope Clement XI issued a bull — Unigenitus — which anathematized all the teachings of the jansenites, formulated in 101 circumstances. Because the papal condemnation in its material essence was the condemnation of the highly respected Church educator, Blessed Augustine, the bull created great concern in France. There followed from the many people (headed by the archbishop of Paris) that held Augustine and Jansen in high esteem, an open protest against the papal bull, which didn’t help much. Because of the Jesuit’s intrigues, the government began to persecute and expel the Jansenites. As a result, many of them fled to the Netherlands.
Interference by secular authorities in Church affairs, resulted in Jansenism ceasing to be a purely religious issue and assuming a distinctly social tone. Parliament refused to register Clement’s XI new bull. What damaged Jansen was that some of his more illustrious adherents, began to fabricate miracles and maintain superstitions. Later, political opposition parties lost interest in Jansenism, resorting to other means in their struggle against the government. On the other hand, the Catholic kings themselves began a battle with the Jesuits. From the mid-eighteenth century, Jansenism disappeared in France.
In the Netherlands, jansenism evolved into an independent church. The Reformation movement eliminated most of the bishops; the head of the local Catholics was an archbishop, the so-called apostolic vicar in Utrecht. Due to the archbishop coming out in favor of Jansenism in 1702, Utrecht became its center. Although Clement XI removed the archbishop, the local chapter refused to recognize any of the candidates that he sent to replace him. For more than 20 years, Utrecht remained without an archbishop. In order to put an end to this, the local chapter chose its own candidate; the Pope refused to confirm him, and the local chapter carried on without it. In 1724, the archbishop was confirmed by the Babylonian bishop, in place of the Pope. This uncommon Utrecht church came into being from that point on. Today, the archbishop is chosen by the bishops of Harlem and Deventer. In acknowledging the Pope’s primacy — who nonetheless refuses to confirm any newly appointed archbishops — the Church regards itself as Catholic, even to the point of condemning jansenism. However, it stubbornly refuses to accept the "Unigenitus" bull. In 1872, the Utrecht Church united with that of the old-catholic one.
The other religious movement that emerged in the 17th century was called quietism (from the Latin word "quiet"), and was of less significance to the papacy than Jansenism. However it deserves attention as a protest against the lifeless theological formalism and ritual exterior, upon which the religious life of the Roman Church was based. Quietism had its beginnings from the Spanish priest Miguel de Molinos, who maintained mystical ideas and a pious life. In his sermons and especial work "Spiritual Guide," he developed the following teaching: the highest Christian perfection lies in the sweet divine peace, uninterrupted by any earthly cares. This peace is attained through inner prayer and direct vision of God. The soul, immersed in this vision, submits itself to Him totally — begins to love Him with pure love i.e. devoid of all mercenary thoughts, not thinking of any rewards or punishment. Yielding itself in this manner to God, it loses even its own identity and as though consumed by Divinity, it has no will of its own but is directed by God’s will. Such a state of the soul is that sweet divine peace toward which every Christian should aspire. Everything earthly and outward, which according to these teachings include church establishments and churches, church services etc. become superfluous. Initially, Molinos attracted many people in Spain, then in Rome — where from 1669 he was a priest. However the Jesuits soon put an end to his activities. Presented to an inquisitorial court in 1687, he was condemned as a heretic and imprisoned, where he died in 1696.
Notwithstanding such a sad ending of the first preacher of Quietism, it still continued to spread in Spain, Italy and especially in France. Women in particular indulged in mystical religious contemplation's and meditations. During Louis XIV reign in France, the most ardent followers of Quietism were Madame Guyon and Lacombe. Their sermons on divine selfless love, pointlessness of churches and church services etc. preached throughout France and Switzerland, earned them many followers. Even the well-known French bishop Fenelon, adhered to Quietismatic ideas. The strong spread of quietism prompted the French bishops — with the renowned Bossuet as their head — to take measures against him. In 1695, under the kings directive, they assembled a council, which condemned the teachings of Quietism as being heresy and found its main representative — Madame Guyon — guilty and imprisoned. However, even after this, the controversy continued with Fenelon emerging as its defender and engaging in polemics with Bossuet. It was only at the request of the king that in 1699, Pope Innocent XII concluded the dispute with Fenelon, who accepted this action unequivocally. Although in the following period Quietism faded of its own accord, the mystical directions of the Roman Church, always had a small number of adherents.
Jansenism and quietism inserted a rift in the Roman Church. In opposition to them, in the beginning of the 18th century, among the extreme adherents of papal Catholicism, an especially strong development began of the previously existing strong Catholic directive — ultra-montanism. These were supporters who thought the Pope should have authority not only within the church sphere, but should have a higher power than that of kings and governments, and that he shouldn’t allow any independence to churches in various countries, even in questions of internal structure. The name ultra-montanism, which came from the Latin "ultra montes" (beyond the mountains i.e. the Alps), was applied in the middle ages to the Pope and his supporters in France and Germany — initially at the Constance Council. Ultra-montanism contained ideas of absolute authority of the Popes, which were developed a long time ago by Gregory VII, Innocent III and Boniface VIII.
After the council of French clergy in 1682 gave the impetus for the development of gallicanism, the opposing direction of the Pope and the Italian clergy was given the name ultra-montanism in France, which came into general use from that time on.
Whereas before the beginning of the 18th century, ultra-montanism was nearly the sole attribute of the papal throne and the Roman curia, now it begins to spread among the clergy and society. This was aided mainly by the Jesuits who had become great defenders of ultra-montanism views — after Pope Clement XI came out openly in their favor and condemned Jansenism in 1713. It is true that in the second half of the 18th century, after the abolition of the Order of Jesuits, ultra-montanism vanished. However, after the affirmation of the papacy in 1815, it once again became a significant force. Currently, ultra-montanism exists in all Catholic countries. The principles that they promote in literature and in life are: papal authority is the sole divine authority on earth; it is not constrained — in the broadest sense — both in spiritual and secular matters of Christians; all Christians on earth must submit unconditionally to this authority, believe the way they are directed and be part of the one Roman-Catholic Church; it’s the only Church that embodies true Christianity; the Pope is its sole guardian and infallible expounder; all those that are not within the Catholic Church or oppose it and its head, the Pope, cannot even hope for salvation. In practice, the ultra-montanists are noted for their impatience toward not only other religious beliefs, but also to all other opinions that don’t agree with theirs. Their views on the world are outlined especially vividly in the work "Du pape" by the French author, Joseph de Mestra (1754-1821), an activist in the Piedemont government.
Presently, the ultra-montanists regard all clerics as their enemies.
New Dogmas in the Roman Church.
In modern times, the Roman Church continues its practice of injecting innovations into the Christian teachings, which are not justified by the Holy Gospel or the Traditions of the Ecumenical Church. Thus in the last decade, she arbitrarily established 2 new dogmas — about Blessed Virgins immaculate conception and about the Pope’s infallibility.
Ideas on Virgin Mary’s immaculate conception i.e. absence of primordial sin, surfaced in the Roman Church as far back as the 12th century, and under its influence, a number of areas established an immaculate conception holiday. However, many renowned Latin theologians — including Bernard Clairvaux (1153), Thomas Aquinas (1274), and others — arose against both the idea and the holiday. Regarding the Popes, initially, they didn’t even permit the teachings on immaculate conception. However, in the latter part of the 15th century, they established in Rome the actual day for its commemoration. When this teaching arose at the Council of Trent, it did not wish to call it a pious belief, and made no new stipulations in its final determinations.
Up to the 14th century, this teaching existed in Rome only as a private idea. It was only during Pope Pius IX (1846-78) that it was elevated to the level of a general church dogma. Pius IX, born Count Giovanni Maria Mastai-Ferreti in Senigallia in 1792, belonged to the Order of Minors (?), did some missionary work in Chili and was made cardinal by Gregory XVI. After the death of this Pope, Mastai-Ferreti was supported by both factions of cardinals — the conservatives and liberals — who regarded him as soft and accommodating. Being a conservative in matters of the Church, the new Pope — assuming the name Pius IX — as head of the secular authority, initially maintained political liberalism. He fully approved the ultra-montanite’s plan to declare the teachings on immaculate conception as a dogma. Initially, the Pope issued a circular to all his bishops, in which he enunciates his views on the teaching as a dogma, and at the same time directing them to explore as to what the reaction would be from the public. Having received a favorable response to this, he invited his bishops to Rome. However, this wasn’t for church deliberations but for them to be present at a triumphant declaration of the dogma, which in fact took place on the 8th Dec. 1854. The establishment of this dogma by the Pope alone will, already acknowledged his infallibility.
For a long time, the Pope had always enjoyed the position of highest authority in the Roman Church. In the middle centuries, the idea of his infallibility arose — even that of his sinlessness. With this, as with the emergence of teachings on Virgin Mary’s immaculate conception, some Latin theologians accepted this thought while others rejected it. Incidentally, among those that accepted the Pope’s infallibility was Thomas Aquinas. The Popes themselves looked upon this issue disparately. The best of them, like Adrian VI (1521-23), argued that the Popes can err even in matters of faith, and that their decrees are spreading heresy. While the Council of Trent did not arrive at a resolution regarding the Pope’s infallibility, the Jesuits declared decidedly that infallibility was a papal attribute. This teaching remained in this uncertain situation till the 19th century i.e. it was a personal opinion that was not binding on the faithful Catholics. However in the 19th century, the Jesuits and ultra-montanists decided to make this teaching a mandatory dogma, thereby consummating their teachings on papal theocracy.
Apart from that, by declaring his infallibility, Pope Pius IX hoped that this would stop the assaults against his secular authority. On the 29th June 1863, by way of a papal bull — Aeterni Patris — he convened an ecumenical council at the Vatican palace and invited the whole of Christianity. The aim of this congregation was only referred to in general terms. All the news on the proposed dogma began to filter into the church circles, causing unease. The German bishops actively discussed this question at a gathering in Foold.
On the 8th Dec. 1869, the Vatican council opened with the participation of some 746 individuals. It appeared right from the beginning that the majority of them favored the new dogma. So that the question of infallibility went through successfully, preliminary measures were undertaken. Thus, bishops that were totally faithful to him were appointed to council deliberations. Many bishops from Italy and Spain were invited as they were completely loyal to the Pope, while those from Germany, France and Portugal, numbered relatively but a few. The Pope undertook to fund 300 bishops at his own expense, counting on their support because of his subsidies. Furthermore, all council deliberations were elected to be conducted in the Latin language only, at which not all the bishops were able to enunciate freely. Together with this, everything was to be held strictly confidential. Finally, the Pope appointed those bishops to administer the activities of the council, upon whom he could fully rely.
After a brief deliberation, which in essence had no significance, some bishops — under instructions from the Pope — composed a petition to the council calling for the confirmation of the dogma on infallibility, and began seeking signatures to it. While many signed, there were many bishops that turned to the Pope with a formal request that he disallow this, so that this teaching on infallibility be presented to the council for deliberation. This represented a wholly well-founded opposition to it. Thus on the 15th July 1870, deputation of the minority group approached Pius IX and begged him to at least adopt a softer form of declaration on the teaching; with this, bishop Kettler even fell to the feet of the Pope. However, all was in vain. On the 17th of July, all the fathers that made up the minority departed from Rome, leaving their protest in which they declared that it was because of their reverence to the holy father, as they didn’t want to voice a "no" at a public forum. After this, on the 18th a decree on papal infallibility was adopted by the majority of 533 for with 2 against it.
The decree declared: "With the approval of the holy council, we teach and determine as a God-revealed to us dogma that when the Pope speaks ex cathedra i.e. during the discharge of his responsibilities as pastor and teacher of all Christians, and on the basis of his apostolic authority given from above, determines teachings that pertain to faith or morals, which are obligatory for the whole church, then he possesses powers of infallibility and Divine help, promised to him in the person of Saint Person, which the Divine Redeemer granted to His Church. As a result of this, by his inherent power and independent of the Church’s approval, decisions by the Roman Pope are not subject to any alterations. Anyone who dares, which God preserve, to object to our decision, may he be damned and excommunicated from the Church."
The announcement of the dogma on the Pope’s infallibility provoked a protest of opposition, which quickly formed into an "old order Catholic Church." It was established by Catholic theologians that didn’t recognize the new dogma. In Germany, this movement began immediately after the dogma was accepted in Rome. The main leaders of this movement were professors of theological studies from Catholic faculties in universities at Munich, Bonn and other cities. An especially outstanding individual among them was the dean of Munich university, the renowned Dallinger. Under his influence and guidance, in 1874 in Munich, a society was formed called "old order Catholics," which did not recognize the Vatican council’s enactment's, and generally rejected the "ultra-montanism’s" theory on papacy. Following the formation of the society in Munich, other old order Catholic societies began to spring up in other German cities, like Cologne, Bonn and others.
The learned theologians were hoping that their movement would be supported by the German bishops, being their comrades by profession and who had shown vigorous opposition to the acceptance of the papal dogma; however the bishops refused to create a rift with the Pope. The professors, accusing the new papal teaching as a contradiction to the Gospel and Christianity, received empathy and approval from the diverse classes of the population in various areas of Germany and Switzerland. They also received favorable attention on the part of Prussia, Wurttemberg, Baden-Hesse and several Swiss cantons (autonomous regions). An idea was formed about organizing the movement, committees and conferences began to form and their delegates appointed to the central committees and congresses. Developing slowly, the old order Catholic movement assumed the form of a positive religious denomination, became organized, formed religious communities in Germany and Switzerland and having received religious corporate rights, established its own churches. The dogma on the Pope’s infallibility is just an extreme expression and the end result of the papal system, both in teachings and rights, beginning approximately in the 9th century and developed over many centuries. The papal system brought with it the separation of Churches and distortion of canonical order of the Church, established on the beginnings of Apostolic tradition and legislation of the Ecumenical Church; she brought about the rift in Western Europe, where the opposition to the papal love of power was expressed through the formation of Anglican, Lutheran, Reform and Utrecht churches, as well as the appearances of many opposition movements.
In the subsequent development of their protest against the Vatican dogma, the learned leaders of the old order Catholics should have also aimed at cleansing the Church of those strata -associated one way or another with this dogma — which have been introduced by the Popes. At the first congress, they in fact marked down such a program aimed firstly, toward the restoration of old Church canonical order among their Christian adherents; secondly, the cleansing of Christian teachings of aberrations and innovations, and the restoration of the dogmatic truths of the Ecumenical Church that existed in the first ten centuries; thirdly, to unite with the Orthodox Churches and faiths that existed in Western Europe. In 1871, at the first old order Catholic congress in Munich, rules governing the formation and organization of parochial communities were formulated.
Every community had to have a priest, and for their ordination, a bishop was essential. An "episcopate committee," formed in 1872 and made up of professors of theology, selected the former professor and priest Joseph-Hubert Reinkens as the bishop. Consecrated by the Utrecht archbishop Gool he swore an oath of allegiance to the Prussian king and government, and was recognized in Prussia, followed quickly by Baden and Hesse as being a worthy "bishop of the German old order Catholic Church." The organization of the old order Catholic Church in Germany was worked out with his participation and direction. Its composite sections were — parochial communities, parishes with bishops and a synod. After the death of "REINKENS" (1896), his replacement was a former professor of philosophy, Theodore-Hubert Weber.
The most success achieved by the old order Catholic movement was in Switzerland. Its substance is outlined in the "Utrecht declaration," signed on the 24th September 1889 by bishops Reinkens and Gerzog and three other bishops of this Church. In it, the false teachings of the Popes are rejected. The old order Catholics emphasized that they were striving to preserve the old, unspoiled Catholicism. According to their convictions, such Catholicism represents itself as the Church of the Ecumenical Councils, when unity existed between East and West. This conviction led the old order Catholics to the idea of coming closer — and even restoring communion — with the Eastern Orthodox Church, as well as the Western Christian societies that recognized the Church beginnings of the Ecumenical Councils’ times. With this aim in mind, in 1874 and 1875, the leaders of the old order Catholics arranged two conferences in Bonn, called "friends of Church unity." At these conferences, apart from the old order Catholics participating, there were representatives of theological study from Orthodox East — even from Russia, as well as spiritual individuals and theologians of Anglican and Protestant beliefs. The aim of the conference was to work out a basis upon which it would be possible to establish unity among all the Churches. However, notwithstanding the genuine desire for unity on the part of all the participants, and despite the fact that there was agreement on some points, these discussions did not bring the desired result in the ensuing period. At the Lucerne congress in 1892, a proposal was adopted for the old order Catholic bishops to enter into official relations with the Eastern Churches, and particularly with the Russian Church. On the 15th December 1892 in St. Petersburg, the Holy Synod directed that a commission be formed to determine the conditions and demands, which could be presented as a basis for discussions with the old order Catholics. The commission was chaired by Archbishop Anthony (Vadkovsky) of Finland.
An accord didn’t ensue. The reason for this was because in recognizing the true Church as being that of the Church of Ecumenical Councils, the old order Catholics didn’t want to take that decisive of severing their ties with Catholicism and returning to the bosom of the Eastern Orthodox Church, which has preserved up to the present time, the pure beginnings and Traditions of the ancient Universal Church.
E. Smirnoff sums up the old order Catholic movement with the following: "Strictly speaking, the old order Catholic’s successes (in the past and present) within the Roman Church have been insignificant. Because of their general indifference to religious questions, educated Catholics do not adhere to this party. Masses of Catholic people stand aloof from the old order Catholicism, because their spiritual guides, taking advantage of their lack of knowledge, are very skillfully able to sustain their loyalty to the papal Church. Catholic and Protestant governments treat old order Catholicism with indifference. Finally, as a result of vagueness in its tasks and aims, it couldn’t and cannot have great success in the West: having separated itself from papal Catholicism, it didn’t merge with Orthodoxy, and assumed a peculiar and indeterminate position among Christian communities. Generally speaking, results of the old order Catholic movement is a question of the future."
History of the Jesuits.
1. Ignatius Loyola.
2. Loyola’s First Disciples.
3. Organization and Training of the Jesuits.
4. Moral Code of the Jesuits.
5. The Jesuit Teaching on Regicide, Murder, Lying, Theft, Etc.
6. The "Secret Instructions" of the Jesuits.
7. Jesuit Management of Rich Widows and the Heirs of Great Families.
8. Diffusion of the Jesuits throughout Christendom.
9. Commercial Enterprises and Banishment.
10. Restoration of the Inquisition.
11. The Tortures oft the Inquisition.
The correct name of the body is the Society of Jesus. When Ignatius of Loyola proposed to found an organization, the Protestants of Germany and England had exposed the comprehensive corruption of the monastic orders, and those who advocated reform in Rome itself wanted the suppression of all Orders rather than the establishment of new. Ignatius had great difficulty in securing permission to found even a "Society," whose members should take the usual vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience and live in communities without being classed as monks. Permission was granted in 1540 after years of intrigue and deceit — the followers of Ignatius in Rome were directed ostentatiously to serve the sick poor and quietly secure rich youths and the support of rich women — which left a permanent mark on the body. It was characterized also from the start by the martial spirit of the ex-soldier Ignatius and by its special consecration in the Pope's service as a regiment to fight heresy. Its activity was rightly called "Jesuitry" from the first. The vow of poverty, collective as well as individual, was prevented from interfering with the accumulation of wealth, which was a primary aim, by drawing a distinction between "colleges" and "houses of the professed" (equal to monasteries) and claiming that the former could acquire unlimited property. From the first also the characteristic Jesuit practice of spying on each other and tale-bearing was introduced and the vow of obedience was especially stressed. Nicolini mistranslates the Constitutions when he says that the Jesuit is "bound to obey an order to commit sin," but the document is written (here at least) in such crude Latin that one might so interpret it; while in practice a Jesuit superior would always claim that it was his business to judge whether the act prescribed was sinful, and the appalling casuistry of the theologians of the Society would serve his purpose. The charge that they had in addition a secret Constitution (Monita Privata) is disputed.
The Jesuits contend that the Polish ex-Jesuit Zahorowski fabricated or falsified the document. He may have tampered with it, but so many copies of the document were found in Jesuit houses when the Society was suppressed in the eighteenth century that it is widely accepted as genuine. Modern Jesuits, on the other hand, try to convince the world of their high character by describing their "Spiritual Exercises" — an intensive periodical course of religious training such as all monks and nuns have — but these spiritual orgies leave no more permanent impression on monks than "revival services" do on an American small town. One must judge the Society by its actual history and by the very grave charges against it which the Pope fully endorsed in suppressing it. The Jesuits may never have laid it down in the public gaze that the end justifies the means [see Ends and Means], but it is a platitude of their history that they always proceeded upon that axiom. The special privileges (such as the right of their colleges to grant degrees) which they wheedled from favourable Popes — some Popes hated them as bitterly as most of the monks and clergy have always done — enabled them to capture the universities, and through these and their colleges, to which they drafted the sons of the rich and noble whom they particularly cultivated, they prepared Catholic lands for the ghastly Thirty Years War against Protestantism, in which groups of them followed the armies and hung about the camps. Their system of education, for which their writers have secured a high and spurious reputation, was the narrowest and most vicious (especially in regard to history) in Europe.
In order to maintain their influence in this respect they pressed their services as confessors of princes and nobles everywhere and connived at their vices. In France, in the time of Louis XIV, the King and all the leading ladies of the Court had Jesuit confessors — Louis had three in succession during the most corrupt seventeen years of his life — and there never was a more debased court. France had at first regarded them with just suspicion, but their leader, Father Manares (whom the Jesuits themselves had later to condemn for corrupt ways), won favour by "discovering" a (fabricated) plot of the Huguenots and prepared the way for the St. Bartholomew Massacre. In non-Catholic lands their propensity for melodramatic secrecy and picturesque or murderous intrigue had full rein. In England, even under "Bloody Mary," they, as Burnet tells in his History of the Reformation (II, 526), overreached themselves by trying to secure all the confiscated monastic property, and after Mary's death their intrigues in disguise and their inspiration of plots soured Elizabeth's policy of toleration. They boast of a hundred Jesuit martyrs in the period that followed. In point of fact only five regularly admitted Jesuits were executed (for plots), and two saved their lives by turning informers.
They swelled their list of martyrs by getting priests in prison to "join the Society" before execution. In Scandinavia they strutted in court-dress as ambassadors and even, disguised, taught Lutheran theology in Protestant universities. In India some lived for years as mystics of the Hindu religion, and there (and in China) they made "converts" by permitting (for which Popes repeatedly condemned them) a mixture of Hindu (or Confucian) and Christian ideas and practices, while they worked fraudulent miracles on the ignorant natives.
In South America [see Paraguay] they made virtual slaves of and exploited their converts and raised great wealth by trade. Local bishops whom they defied and libeled, priests, and monks assailed Rome with complaints, and in 1656 Pascal opened the attack on them in Europe by the scalding charges, especially of lax principles and leniency to vice, of his famous Provincial Letters.
The Popes repeatedly condemned their practices (1710, 1715, 1742, and 1744), but dreaded their power and vindictiveness. More than one Pope is said to have been poisoned by them, and we smile at the ingenuous Jesuit plea that we cannot prove it. But Europe had now begun to feel a power more subtle, yet more honest, than that of the Society — that of Voltaire — and the great statesmen who were his pupils moved against them. The Marquis de Pombal got them expelled from Portugal in 1759. Choiseul exposed their trickery and their vast wealth in France and secured their expulsion (1764). Count D'Aranda had them suppressed in Spain (1767), and Tannucci in the Kingdom of Naples. A tense and dramatic struggle now proceeded at Rome, the Jesuits using every device in their large repertory to avert the suppression which the Catholic monarchs demanded, but in 1773 Pope Clement XIV, in the Bull Dominus ac Redemptor Noster, abolished the Society "for ever."
The charges against the Jesuits were in large part brought by bishops or priests of high character, but the Jesuit writers airily dismiss them by giving the reader the impression that they were fabrications of wicked enemies of Christ. It would be fatal to admit that the Pope endorsed the indictment, so the apologists uniformly say, in one of their most brazen perversions of facts, that in the Bull "no blame is laid by the Pope on the rules of the Order, or the present condition of its members, or the orthodoxy of their teaching." (That is the language of the Catholic Encyclopaedia).
The Pope is represented as being reluctantly forced by circumstances to suspend the Society for the time. The truth is that the Pope enumerates at length all the charges against the Jesuits and fully endorses them. He recalls that thirteen previous Popes have condemned their practices and their doctrines after full inquiry, but he says the remedies had "neither efficacy nor strength to put an end to the trouble." Therefore, "recognizing that the Society of Jesus can no longer produce the abundant fruits and the considerable advantages for which it was created," he "suppresses and abolishes the Society for ever."
Catholic writers in grossly misrepresenting the Pope's action, take advantage of the fact that no English translation of the Bull is available, the last published being in The Jesuits by R. Demaus (1873). The essential parts of it are translated from Latin by the present writer in the book listed below. The Society was restored in the sanguinary reaction that followed the fall of Napoleon and the Jesuits returned to their pernicious intrigues. To-day they are a body of very comfortable mediocrities confining their love of intrigue to the capture of rich Catholics for their own parishes for which most priests cordially detest them and angling for aristocratic or semi-aristocratic converts. They have no distinction in learning or literature in spite of their wealth and leisure and they are superior to the other clergy only in their audacity in untruth and their solicitous ministration to the wealthy.
See McCabe's Candid History of the Jesuits (1913). F. A. Ridley's The Jesuits (1938) is a sound, shorter, but broader study. A. Close's Jesuit Plots Against Great Britain (1935) is generally reliable. Of the works recommended in Robertson's Courses of Study, all of which are outdated, Nicolini's History of the Jesuits (1853) is unreliable, and Crétineau-Joly's Histoire religieuse, politique, et littéraire de la Compagnie de Jesus (6 vols., 1845-6), which all encyclopaedias recommend as the standard authority, is a monstrous piece of Jesuitry subsidized by the Jesuits themselves.
The Jesuit Historian, Nicolini, stated in regard to the Jesuits:
"Draw the character of the Jesuit as he seems in London and you will not recognize the portrait of the Jesuit in Rome. The Jesuit is a man of circumstances, despotic in Spain, constitutional in England, republican in Paraguay, bigot in Rome, idolater in India. He will assume and act out in his own person all those different features by which men are usually distinguished from each other. He will accompany the gay women of the world to the theatre and will share in the excess of the debauchery. With solemn countenance he will take his place by the side of the religious manner church or will revel in the tavern with a glutton or sot. He dresses in all garbs, speaks all languages, knows all customs, is present everywhere though nowhere recognized and all this it would seem, Oh Monstrous Blasphemy, "for the greater glory of God."
The Jesuits backed the Inquisition with all it’s elaborate and barbarous system of tortures and murders, putting to death millions of people. The Jesuits recon it among the glories of their Order that Loyola himself, supported by a special memorial to the Pope a petition to reorganize that cruel and abhorrent tribunal, the Inquisition. Under the shadow of that hellish monster the infernal flames of the most vile persecution were stoked while the Jesuits looked on with a sinister and diabolical smile across their faces.
History of the Jesuits.
Excerpted from the massive 2 vol. History of Protestantism Dr. Wylie's massive History was published in 1878. The Jesuits did not self-destruct with the fall of the Papal States in 1870. As a matter of fact, that momentous event spurred them on to greater effort. The highest ranking Jesuit priest ever to escape that system and come to Christ was Dr. Alberto Rivera. He was a Bishop under the Extreme Oath of Induction. Normally, a person of such high rank who wants out knows too much, and always leaves feet first. God miraculously spared his life for 30 years. He finally succumbed to Jesuit poison in June, 1997. Dr. Rivera authenticates everything that Dr. Wylie says in his book and the half has not been told.
Alberto Rivera as a young Spanish Jesuit priest during the Franco regime Dr. Rivera (the man who knew too much) after his conversion to Christ in 1967. Dr. Rivera became a martyr for Jesus in 1997. His brave widow is courageously carrying on his mission.
1. Ignatius Loyola.
Rome’s New Army — Ignatius Loyola — His Birth — His Wars — He is Wounded — Betakes him to the Legends of the Saints — His Fanaticism Kindled — The Knight-Errant of Mary — The Cave at Manressa — His Mortifications — Comparison between Luther and Ignatius Loyola — An Awakening of the Conscience in both — Luther turns to the Bible, Loyola to Visions — His Revelations.
Don Inigo Lopez de Recalde, the Ignatius Loyola of history, was the founder of the Order of Jesus, or the Jesuits. His birth was nearly contemporaneous with that of Luther. He was the youngest son of one of the highest Spanish grandees, and was born in his father’s Castle of Loyola, in the province of Guipuzcoa, in 1491. His youth was passed at the splendid and luxurious comfort of Ferdinand the Catholic. Spain at that time was fighting to expel the Moors, whose presence on her soil she accounted at once an insult to her independence and an affront to her faith. She was ending the conflict in Spain, but continuing it in Africa.
The naturally ardent soul of Ignatius was set on fire by the religious fervor around him. He grew weary of the gaieties and frivolities of the court; nor could even the dalliances and adventures of knight-errantry satisfy him. He thirsted to earn renown on the field of arms. Embarking in the war which at that time engaged the religious enthusiasm and military chivalry of his countrymen, he soon distinguished himself by his feats of daring. Ignatius was bidding fair to take a high place among warriors, and transmit to posterity a name encompassed with the halo of military glory — but with that halo only. At this stage of his career an incident befell him which cut short his exploits on the battlefield, and transferred his enthusiasm and chivalry to another sphere.
It was the year 1521. Luther was uttering his famous "No!" before the emperor and his princes, and summoning, as with trumpet-peal, Christendom to arms. It is at this moment the young Ignatius, the intrepid soldier of Spain, and about to become the yet more intrepid soldier of Rome, appears before its.
He is shut up in the town of Pamplona, which the French are besieging. The garrison are hard pressed: and after some whispered consultations they openly propose to surrender. Ignatius deems the very thought of such a thing dishonor; he denounces the proposed act of his comrades as cowardice, and re-entering the citadel with a few companions as courageous as himself, swears to defend it to the last drop of his blood.
By-and-by famine leaves him no alternative save to die within the walls, or to cut his way sword in hand through the host of the besiegers. He goes forth and joins battle with the French. As he is fighting desperately he is struck by a musket-ball, wounded dangerously in both legs, and laid senseless on the field. Ignatius had ended the last campaign he was ever to fight with the sword: his valor he was yet to display on other fields, but he would mingle no more on those which resound with the clash of arms and the roar of artillery.
The bravery of the fallen warrior had won the respect of the foe. Raising him from the ground, where he was fast bleeding to death, they carried him to the hospital of Pamplona, and tended him with care, till he was able to be conveyed in a litter to his father’s castle. Thrice had he to undergo the agony of having his wounds opened. Clenching his teeth and closing his fists he bade defiance to pain. Not a groan escaped him while under the torture of the surgeon’s knife. But the tardy passage of the weeks and months during which he waited the slow healing of his wounds, inflicted his ardent spirit a keener pain than had the probing-knife on his quivering limbs. Fettered to his couch he chafed at the inactivity to which he was doomed. Romances of chivalry and tales of war were brought him to beguile the hours. These exhausted, other books were produced, but of a somewhat different character. This time it was the legends of the saints that were brought the bed-rid knight. The tragedy of the early Christian martyrs passed before him as he read. Next came the monks and hermits of the Thebaic deserts and the Sinaitic mountains. With an imagination on fire he perused the story of the hunger and cold they had braved; of the self-conquests they had achieved; of the battles they had waged with evil spirits; of the glorious visions that had been vouchsafed them; and the brilliant rewards they had gained in the lasting reverence of earth and the felicities and dignities of heaven. He panted to rival these heroes, whose glory was of a kind so bright, and pure, that compared with it the renown of the battlefield was dim and sordid. His enthusiasm and ambition were as boundless as ever, but now they were directed into a new channel.
Henceforward the current of his life was changed. He had lain down "a knight of the burning sword" — to use the words of his biographer, Vieyra — he rose up from it "a saint of the burning torch." The change was a sudden and violent one, and drew after it vast consequences not to Ignatius only, and the men of his own age, but to millions of the human race in all countries of the world, and in all the ages that have elapsed since. He who lay down on his bed the fiery soldier of the emperor, rose from it; the yet more fiery soldier of the Pope. The weakness occasioned by loss of blood, the morbidity produced by long seclusion, the irritation of acute and protracted suffering, joined to a temperament highly excitable, and a mind that had fed on miracles and visions till its enthusiasm had grown into fanaticism, accounts in part for the transformation which Ignatius had undergone. Though the balance of his intellect was now sadly disturbed, his shrewdness, his tenacity, and his daring remained. Set free from the fetters of calm reason, these qualities had freer scope than ever. The wing of his earthly ambition was broken, but he could take his flight heavenward. If earth was forbidden him, the celestial domains stood open, and there worthier exploits and more brilliant rewards awaited his prowess.
The heart of a soldier plucked out, and that of a monk given him, Ignatius vowed, before leaving his sick-chamber, to be the slave, the champion, the knight-errant of Mary. She was the lady of his soul, and after the manner of dutiful knights he immediately repaired to her shrine at Montserrat, hung up his arms before her image, and spent the night in watching them.
But reflecting that he was a soldier of Christ, that great Monarch who had gone forth to subjugate all the earth, he resolved to eat no other food, wear no other raiment than his King had done, and endure the same hardships and vigils. Laying aside his plume, his coat of mail, his shield and sword, he donned the cloak of the mendicant. "Wrapped in sordid rags," says Duller, "an iron chain and prickly girdle pressing on his naked body, covered with filth, with un-combed hair and untrimmed nails," he retired to a dark mountain in the vicinity of Manressa, where was a gloomy cave, in which he made his abode for some time. There he subjected himself to all the penances and mortifications of the early anchorites whose holiness he emulated. He wrestled with the evil spirit, talked to voices audible to no ear but his own, fasted for days on end, till his weakness was such that he fell into a swoon, and one day was found at the entrance of his cave, lying on the ground, half dead.
The cave at Manressa recalls vividly to our memory the cell at Erfurt. The same austerities, vigils, mortifications, and mental efforts and agonies which were undergone by Ignatius Loyola, had but a very few years before this been passed through by Martin Luther. So far the career of the founder of the Jesuits and that of the champion of Protestantism were the same. Both had set before them a high standard of holiness, and both had all but sacrificed life to reach it. But at the point to which we have come the courses of the two men widely diverge. Both hitherto in their pursuit of truth and holiness had traveled by the same road; but now we see Luther turning to the Bible, "the light that shineth in a dark place," "the sure Word of Prophecy." Ignatius Loyola, on the other hand, surrenders himself to visions and revelations. As Luther went onward the light grew only the brighter around him. He had turned his face to the sun. Ignatius had turned his gaze inward upon his own beclouded mind, and verified the saying of the wise man, "He who wandereth out of the way of understanding shall remain in the congregation of the dead."
Finding him half exanimate at the mouth of his cave, sympathizing friends carried Ignatius to the town of Manressa. Continuing there the same course of penances and self-mortifications which he had pursued in solitude, his bodily weakness greatly increased, but he was more than recompensed by the greater frequency of those heavenly visions with which he now began to be favored. In Manressa he occupied a cell in the Dominican convent, and as he was then projecting a pilgrimage to Jerusalem, he began to qualify himself for this holy journey by a course of the severest penances. "He scourged himself thrice a day," says Ranke, he rose up to prayer at midnight, and passed seven hours of each day on his knees.
It will hardly do to say that this marvelous case is merely an instance of an unstrung bodily condition, and of vicious mental stimulants abundantly supplied, where the thirst for adventure and distinction was still unquenched. A closer study of the case will show that there was in it an awakening of the conscience. There was a sense of sin — its awful demerit, and its fearful award. Loyola, too, would seem to have felt the "terrors of death, and the pains of hell." He had spent three days in Montserrat inconfessing the sins of all his past life But on a more searching review of his life, finding that he had omitted many sins, he renewed and amplified his confession at Manressa. If he found peace it was only for a short while; again his sense of sin would return, and to such a pitch did his anguish rise, that thoughts of self-destruction, came into his mind. Approaching the window of his cell, he was about to throw himself from it, when it suddenly flashed upon him that the act was abhorrent to the Almighty, and he withdrew, crying out,
"Lord, I will not do aught that may offend thee."
One day he awakened as from a dream. Now I know, said he to himself, that all these torments are from the assaults of Satan. I am tossed between the promptings of the good Spirit, who would have me be at peace, and the dark suggestions of the evil one, who seeks continually to terrify me. I will have done with this warfare. I will forget my past life; I will open these wounds not again. Luther in the midst of tempests as terrible had come to a similar resolution. Awaking as from a frightful dream, he lifted up his eyes and saw One who had borne his sins upon His cross: and like the mariner who clings amid the surging billows to the rock, Luther was at peace because he had anchored his soul on an Almighty foundation. But says Ranke, speaking of Loyola and the course he had now resolved to pursue, "this was not so much the restoration of his peace as a resolution, it was an engagement entered into by the will rather than a conviction to which the submission of the will is inevitable. It required no aid from Scripture, it was based on the belief he entertained of an immediate connection between himself and the world of spirits. This would never have satisfied Luther. No inspirations — no visions would Luther admit; all were in his opinion alike injurious. He would have the simple, written, indubitable Word of God alone.
From the hour that Ignatius resolved to think no more of his sins his spiritual horizon began, as he believed, to clear up. All his gloomy terrors receded with the past which he had consigned to oblivion. His bitter tears were dried up, and his heavy sighs no longer resounded through the convent halls. He was taken, he felt, into more intimate communion with God. The heavens were opened that he might have a clearer insight into Divine mysteries. True, the Spirit had revealed these things in the morning of the world, through chosen and accredited channels, and inscribed them on the page of inspiration that all might learn them from that infallible source. But Ignatius did not search for these mysteries in the Bible; favored above the sons of men, he received them, as he thought, in revelations made specially to himself. Alas! his hour had come and passed, and the gate that would have ushered him in amid celestial realities and joys was shut, and henceforward he must dwell amid fantasies and dreams.
It was intimated to him one day that he should yet see the Savior in person. He had not long to wait for the promised revelation. At mass his eyes were opened, and he saw the incarnate God in the Host. What farther proof did he need of transubstantiation, seeing the whole process had been shown to him? A short while thereafter the Virgin revealed herself with equal plainness to his bodily eyes. Not fewer than thirty such visits did Loyola receive. One day as he sat on the steps of the Church of St. Dominic at Manressa, singing a hymn to Mary, he suddenly fell into a reverie, and had the symbol of the ineffable mystery of the Trinity shown to him, under the figure of "three keys of a musical instrument." He sobbed for very joy, and entering the church, began publishing the miracle. On another occasion, as he walked along the banks of the Llobregat, that waters Manressa, he sat down, and fixing his eyes intently on the stream, many Divine mysteries became apparent to him, such "as other men," says his biographer Maffei, "can with great difficulty understand, after much reading, long vigils, and study."
1 Ranke, Hist. of the Popes, bk. 2, sec. 4, p. 138; Lond., 1874.
2 Ibid., pp. 138, 139.
3 Ranke, bk. 2, sec. 4, pp. 138, 139.
4 Ibid., p. 140.
2. Loyola’s First Disciples.
Vision of Two Camps — Ignatius Visits Jerusalem — Forbidden to Proselytize — Returns to Spain — Resolves to make Christendom his Field — Puts himself to School — Repairs to Paris — His Two Companions — Peter Fabre — Francis Xavier — Loyola subjects them to a Severe Regimen — They become his Disciples — Loyola’s First Nine Followers — Their Vow in the Church of Montmartre — The Book of Spiritual Exercises — Its Course of Discipline — Four Weeks of Meditation — Topic of each Week — The Spiritual Exercises and the Holy Spirit — Visits Venice — Repairs to Rome — Draft of Rules — Bull Constituting the Society. Loyola and his disciples before Pope Paul III.
AMONG the wonderful things shown to Ignatius Loyola by special revelation was a vision of two great camps. The center of the one was placed at Babylon; and over it there floated the gloomy ensign of the prince of darkness. The Heavenly King had erected his standard on Mount Zion, and made Jerusalem his headquarters. In the war of which these two camps were the symbols, and the issues of which were to be grand beyond all former precedent, Loyola was chosen, he believed, to be one of the chief captains. He longed to place himself at the center of action. The way thither was long. Wide oceans and gloomy deserts had to be traversed, and hostile tribes passed through. But he had an iron will, a boundless enthusiasm, and what was more, a Divine call — for such it seemed to him in his delusion. He set out penniless (1523), and begging his bread by the way, he arrived at Barcelona. There he embarked in a ship which landed him on the shore of Italy. Thence, travelling on foot, after long months, and innumerable hardships, he entered in safety the gates of Jerusalem. But the reception that awaited him in the "Holy City" was not such as he had fondly anticipated. His rags, his uncombed locks, which almost hid his emaciated features, but ill accorded with the magnificence of the errand which had brought him to that shore. Loyola thought of doing in his single person what the armies of the Crusaders had failed to do by their combined strength.
The head of the Romanists in Jerusalem saw in him rather the mendicant than the warrior, and fearing doubtless that should he offer battle to the Crescent, he was more likely to provoke a tempest of Turkish fanaticism than drive back the hordes of the infidel, he commanded him to desist under the threat of excommunication. Thus withstood Loyola returned to Barcelona, which he reached in 1524. Derision and insults awaited his arrival in his native Spain. His countrymen failed to see the grand aims he cherished beneath his rags; nor could they divine the splendid career, and the immortality of fame, which were to emerge from this present squalor and debasement. But not for one moment did Loyola’s own faith falter in his great destiny. He had the art, known only to those fated to act a great part, of converting impediments into helps, and extracting new experience and fresh courage from disappointment. His repulsion from the "holy fields" had taught him that Christendom, and not Asia, was the predestined scene of his warfare, and that he was to do battle, not with the infidels of the East, but with the ever-growing hosts of heretics in Europe. But to meet the Protestant on his own ground, and to fight him with his own weapons, was a still more difficult task than to convert the Saracen. He felt that meanwhile he was destitute of the necessary qualifications, but it was not too late to acquire them.
Though a man of thirty-five, he put himself to school at Barcelona, and there, seated amid the youth of the city, he prosecuted the study of Latin. Having acquired some mastery of this tongue, he removed (1526) to the University of Alcala to commence theology. In a little space he began to preach. Discovering a vast zeal in the propagation of his tenets, and no little success in making disciples, male and female, the Inquisition, deeming both the man and his aims somewhat mysterious, arrested him. The order of the Jesuits was on the point of being nipped in the bud. But finding in Loyola no heretical bias, the Fathers dismissed him on his promise of holding his peace. He repaired to Salamanca, but there too he encountered similar obstacles. It was not agreeable thus to champ the curb of privilege and canonical authority; but it ministered to him a wholesome discipline. It sharpened his circumspection and shrewdness, without in the least abating his ardor. Holding fast by his grand purpose, he quitted his native land, and repairing in 1528 to Paris, entered himself as a student in the College of St. Barbara.
In the world of Paris he became more practical; but the flame of his enthusiasm still burned on. Through penance, through study, through ecstatic visions, and occasional checks, he pursued with unshaken faith and unquenched resolution his celestial calling as the leader of a mighty spiritual army, of which he was to be the creator, and which was to wage victorious battle with the hosts of Protestantism. Loyola’s residence in Paris, which was from 1528 to 1535, 1 coincides with the period of greatest religious excitement in the French capital. Discussions were at that time of hourly occurrence in the streets, in the halls of the Sorbonne, and at the royal table. Loyola must have witnessed all the stirring and tragic scenes we have already described; he may have stood by the stake of Berquin; he had seen with indignation, doubtless, the saloons of the Louvre opened for the Protestant sermon; he had felt the great shock which France received front the Placards, and taken part, it may be, in the bloody rites of her great day of expiation. It is easy to see how, amid excitements like these, Loyola’s zeal would burn stronger every hour; but his ardor did not hurry him into action till all was ready. The blow he meditated was great, and time, patience, and skill were necessary to prepare the instruments by whom he was to inflict it.
It chanced that two young students shared with Loyola his rooms, in the College of St. Barbara. The one was Peter Fabre, from Savoy. His youth had been passed amid his father’s flocks; the majesty of the silent mountains had sublimed his natural piety into enthusiasm; and one night, on bended knee, under the star-bestudded vault, he devoted himself to God in a life of study. The other companion of Loyola was Francis Xavier, of Pamplona, in Navarre. For 500 years his ancestors had been renowned as warriors, and his ambition was, by becoming a scholar, to enhance the fame of his house by adding to its glory in arms the yet purer glory of learning. These two, the humble Savoyard and the high-born Navarrese, Loyola had resolved should be his first disciples.
As the artist selects his block, and with skillful eye and plastic hand bestows touch after touch of the chisel, till at last the superfluous parts are cleared away, and the statue stands forth so complete and perfect in its symmetry that the dead stone seems to breathe, so did the future general of the Jesuit army proceed to mold and fashion his two companions, Fabre and Xavier. The former was soft and pliable, and easily took the shape which the master-hand sought to communicate. The other was obdurate, like the rocks of his native mountains, but the patience and genius of Loyola finally triumphed over his pride of family and haughtiness of spirit. He first of all won their affection by certain disinterested services; he next excited their admiration by the loftiness of his own asceticism; he then imparted to them his grand project, and fired them with the ambition of sharing with him in the accomplishment of it. Having brought them thus far he entered them on a course of discipline, the design of which was to give them those hardy qualities of body and soul, which would enable them to fulfill their lofty vocation as leaders in an army, every soldier in which was to be tried and hardened in the fire as he himself had been. He exacted of them frequent confession; he was equally rigid as regarded their participation in the Eucharist; the one exercise trained them in submission, the other fed the flame of their zeal, and thus the two cardinal qualities which Loyola demanded in all his followers were developed side by side. Severe bodily mortifications were also enjoined upon them. "Three days and three nights did he compel them to fast. During the severest winters, when carriages might be seen to traverse the frozen Seine, he would not permit Fabre the slightest relaxation of discipline." Thus it was that he mortified their pride, taught them to despise wealth, schooled them to brave danger and contemn luxury, and inured them to cold, hunger, and toil; in short, he made them dead to every passion save that of the "Holy War," in which they were to bear arms.
A beginning had been made. The first recruits had been enrolled in that army which was speedily to swell into a mighty host, and unfurl its gloomy ensigns and win its dismal triumphs in every land. We can imagine Loyola’s joy as he contemplated these two men, fashioned so perfectly in his own likeness. The same master-artificer who had molded these two could form others — in short, any number. The list was soon enlarged by the addition of four other disciples. Their names — obscure then, but in after-years to shine with a fiery splendor — were Jacob Lainez, Alfonso Salmeron, Nicholas Bobadilla, and Simon Rodriguez. The first three were Spaniards, the fourth was a Portuguese. They were seven in all; but the accession of two others increased them to nine: and now they resolved on taking their first step. On the 15th of August, 1534, Loyola, followed by his nine companions, entered the subterranean chapel of the Church of Mont-Martre, at Paris, and mass being said by Fabre, who had received priest’s orders, the company, after the usual vow of chastity and poverty, took a solemn oath to dedicate their lives to the conversion of the Saracens, or, should circumstances make that attempt impossible, to lay themselves and their services unreservedly at the feet of the Pope. They sealed their oath by now receiving the Host. The day was chosen because it was the anniversary of the Assumption of the Virgin, and the place because it was consecrated to Mary, the queen of saints and angels, from whom, as Loyola firmly believed, he had received his mission. The army thus enrolled was little, and it was great. It was little when counted, it was great when weighed. In sublimity of aim, and strength of faith — using the term in its mundane sense — it wielded a power before which nothing on earth — one principle excepted — should be able to stand.2
To foster the growth of this infant Hercules, Loyola had prepared beforehand his book entitled Spiritual Exercises. This is a body of rules for teaching men how to conduct the work of their "conversion." It consists of four grand meditations, and the penitent, retiring into solitude, is to occupy absorbingly his mind on each in succession, during the space of the rising and setting of seven suns. It may be fitly styled a journey from the gates of destruction to the gates of Paradise, mapped out in stages so that it might be gone in the short period of four weeks. There are few more remarkable books in the world. It combines the self-denial and mortification of the Brahmin with the asceticism of the anchorite, and the ecstasies of the schoolmen, it professes, like the Koran, to be a revelation. "The Book of Exercises," says a Jesuit, "was truly written by the finger of God, and delivered to Ignatius by the Holy Mother of God."3
The Spiritual Exercises, we have said, was a body of rules by following which one could effect upon.
3. Organization and Training of the Jesuits.
Loyola’s Vast Schemes — A General for the Army — Loyola Elected — "Constitutions" — Made Known to only a Select Few — Powers of the General — An Autocrat — He only can make Laws — Appoints all Officers, etc. — Organization — Six Grand Divisions — Thirty-seven Provinces — Houses, Colleges, Missions, etc. — Reports to the General — His Eye Surveys the World — Organization — Preparatory Ordeal — Four Classes — Novitiates — Second Novitiate — Its Rigorous Training — The Indifferents — The Scholars — The Coadjutors — The Professed — Their Oath — Their Obedience.
THE long-delayed wishes of Loyola had been realized, and his efforts, abortive in the past, had now at length been crowned with success. The Papal bull had given formal existence to the order, what Christhad done in heaven his Vicar had ratified on the earth. But Loyola was too wise to think that all had been accomplished; he knew that he was only at the beginning of his labors. In the little band around him he saw but the nucleus of an army that would multiply and expand till one day it should be as the stars in multitude, and bear the standard of victory to every land on earth. The gates of the East were meanwhile closed against him; but the Western world would not always set limits to the triumphs of his spiritual arms.
He would yet subjugate both hemispheres, and extend the dominion of Rome from the rising to the setting sun. Such were the schemes that Loyola, who hid under his mendicant’s cloak an ambition vast as Alexander’s, was at that moment revolving. Assembling his comrades one day about this time, he addressed them, his biographer Bouhours tells us, in a long speech, saying, "Ought we not to conclude that we are called to win to God, not only a single nation, a single country, but all nations, all the kingdoms of the world?" 1
An army to conquer the world, Loyola was forming. But he knew that nothing is stronger than its weakest part, and therefore the soundness of every link, the thorough discipline and tried fidelity of every soldier in this mighty host was with him an essential point. That could be secured only by making each individual, before enrolling himself, pass through an ordeal that should sift, and try, and harden him to the utmost.
But first the Company of Jesus had to elect a head. The dignity was offered to Loyola. He modestly declined the post, as Julius Caesar did the diadem. After four days spent in prayer and penance, his disciples returned and humbly supplicated him to be their chief. Ignatius, viewing this as an intimation of the will of God, consented. He was the first General of the order. Few royal scepter's bring with them such an amount of real power as this election bestowed on Loyola. The day would come when the tiara itself would bow before that yet mightier authority which was represented by the cap of the General of the Jesuits.
The second step was to frame the "Constitutions" of the society. In this labor Loyola accepted the aid of Lainez, the ablest of his converts. Seeing it was at God’s command that Ignatius had planted the tree of Jesuitism in the spiritual vineyard, it was to be expected that the Constitutions of the Company would proceed from the same high source. The Constitutions were declared to be a revelation from God, the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.2 This gave them absolute authority over the members, and paved the way for the substitution of the Constitution and canons of the Society of Jesus in the room of Christianity itself.
These canons and Instructions were not published: they were not communicated to all the members of the society even; they were made known to a few only — in all their extent to a very few. They took care to print them in their own college at Rome, or in their college at Prague; and if it happened that they were printed elsewhere, they secured and destroyed the edition. "I cannot discover," says M. de la Chalotais, "that the Constitutions of the Jesuits have ever been seen or examined by any tribunal whatsoever, secular or ecclesiastic; by any sovereign — not even by the Court of Chancery of Prague, when permission was asked to print them... They have taken all sorts of precautions to keep them a secret.3
For a century they were concealed from the knowledge of the world; and it was an accident which at last dragged them into the light from the darkness in which they had so long been buried. It is not easy, perhaps it is not possible, to say what number of volumes the Constitutions of the Jesuits form. M. Louis Rene de la Chalotais, Procurator-General of King Louis XV., in his Report on the Constitutions of the Jesuits’, given in to the Parliament of Bretagne, speaks of fifty volumes folio. That was in the year 1761, or 221 years after the founding of the order. This code, then enormous, must be greatly more so now, seeing every bull and brief of the Pope addressed to the society, every edict of its General, is so much more added to a legislation that is continually augmenting. We doubt whether any member of the order is found bold enough to undertake a complete study of them, or ingenious enough to reconcile all their contradictions and inconsistencies. Prudently abstaining from venturing into a labyrinth from which he may never emerge, he simply asks, not what do the Constitutions say, but what does the General command? Practically the will of his chief is the code of the Jesuit.
We shall first consider the powers of the General. The original bull of Paul III. constituting the Company gave to "Ignatius de Loyola, with nine priests, his companions," the power to make Constitutions and particular rules, and also to alter them. The legislative power thus rested in the hands of the General and his company — that is, in a "Congregation" representing them. But when Loyola died, and Lainez succeeded him as General, one of his first acts was to assemble a Congregation, and cause it to be decided that the General only had the right to make rules.4
This crowned the autocracy of the General, for while he has the power of legislating for all others, no one may legislate for him. He acts without control, without responsibility, without law. It is true that in certain cases the society may depose the General. But it cannot exercise its powers unless it be assembled, and the General alone can assemble the Congregation. The whole order, with all its authority, is, in fact, comprised in him.
In virtue of his prerogative the General can command and regulate everything in the society. He may make special Constitutions for the advantage of the society, and he may alter them, abrogate them, and make new ones, dating them at any time he pleases. These new rules must be regarded as confirmed by apostolic authority, not merely from the time they were made, but the time they are dated. The General assigns to all provincials, superiors, and members of the society, of whatever grade, the powers they are to exercise, the places where they are to labor, the missions they are to discharge, and he may annul or confirm their acts at his pleasure. He has the right to nominate provincials and rectors, to admit or exclude members, to say what proffered dignity they are or are not to accept, to change the destination of legacies, and, though to give money to his relatives exposes him to deposition, "he may yet give alms to any amount that he may deem conducive to the glory of God." He is invested moreover with the entire government and regulation of the colleges of the society. He may institute missions in all parts of the world. When commanding in the name of Jesus Christ, and in virtue of obedience, he commands under the penalty of mortal and venial sin. From his orders there is no appeal to the Pope. He can release from vows; he can examine into the consciences of the members; but it is useless to particularize — the General is the society.5
The General alone, we have said, has power to make laws, ordinances, and declarations. This power is theoretically bounded, though practically absolute. It has been declared that everything essential ("Substantia Institutionis") to the society is immutable, and therefore removed beyond the power of the General. But it has never yet been determined what things belong to the essence of the institute. Many attempts have been made to solve this question, but no solution that is comprehensible has ever been arrived at; and so long as this question remains without an answer, the powers of the General will remain without a limit. Let us next attend to the organization of the society. The Jesuit monarchy covers the globe. At its head, as we have said, is a sovereign, who rules over all, but is himself ruled over by no one. First come six grand divisions termed Assistanzen, satrapies or princedoms. These comprehend the space stretching from the Indus to the Mediterranean; more particularly India, Spain and Portugal, Germany and France, Italy and Sicily, Poland and Lithuania.6
Outside this area the Jesuits have established missions. The heads of these six divisions act as coadjutors to their General; they are staff or cabinet. These six great divisions are subdivided into thirty-seven Provinces.7
Over each province is placed a chief, termed a Provincial. The provinces are again subdivided into a variety of houses or establishments. First come the houses of the Professed, presided over by their Provost. Next come the colleges, or houses of the novices and scholars, presided over by their Rector or Superior. Where these cannot be established, "residences" are erected, for the accommodation of the priests who perambulate the district, preaching and hearing confessions. And lastly may be mentioned "mission-houses," in which Jesuits live unnoticed as secular clergy, but seeking, by all possible means, to promote the interests of the society.8
From his chamber in Rome the eye of the General surveys the world of Jesuitism to its farthest bounds; there is nothing done in it which he does not see; there is nothing spoken in it which he does not hear. It becomes us to note the means by which this almost superhuman intelligence is acquired. Every year a list of the houses and members of the society, with the name, talents, virtues, and failings of each, is laid before the General. In addition to the annual report, every one of the thirty-seven provincials must send him a report monthly of the state of his province, he must inform him minutely of its political and ecclesiastical condition. Every superior of a college must report once every three months. The heads of houses of residence, and houses of novitiates, must do the same. In short, from every quarter of his vast dominions come a monthly and a tri-monthly report. If the matter reported on has reference to persons outside the society, the Constitutions direct that the provincials and superiors shall write to the General in cipher. "Such precautions are taken against enemies," says M. de Chalotais. "Is the system of the Jesuits inimical to all governments?" Thus to the General of the Jesuits the world lies "naked and open." He sees by a thousand eyes, he hears by a thousand ears; and when he has a behest to execute, he can select the fittest agent from an innumerable host, all of whom are ready to do his bidding. The past history, the good and evil qualities of every member of the society, his talents, his dispositions, his inclinations, his tastes, his secret thoughts, have all been strictly examined, minutely chronicled, and laid before the eye of the General. It is the same as if he were present in person, and had seen and conversed with each.
All ranks, from the nobleman to the day-laborer; all trades, from the opulent banker to the shoemaker and porter; all professions, from the stoled dignitary and the learned professor to the cowled mendicant; all grades of literary men, from the philosopher, the mathematician, and the historian, to the schoolmaster and the reporter on the provincial newspaper, are enrolled in the society. Marshalled, and in continual attendance, before their chief, stand this host, so large in numbers, and so various in gifts. At his word they go, and at his word they come, speeding over seas and mountains, across frozen steppes, or burning plains, on his errand. Pestilence, or battle, or death may lie on his path, the Jesuit’s obedience is not less prompt. Selecting one, the General sends him to the royal cabinet. Making choice of another, he opens to him the door of Parliament. A third he enrolls in a political club; a fourth he places in the pulpit of a church, whose creed he professes that he may betray it; a fifth he commands to mingle in the saloons of the literati; a sixth he sends to act his part in the Evangelical Conference; a seventh he seats beside the domestic hearth; and an eighth he sends afar off to barbarous tribes, where, speaking a strange tongue, and wearing a rough garment, he executes, amidst hardships and perils, the will of his superior.
There is no disguise which the Jesuit will not wear, no art he will not employ, no motive he will not feign, no creed he will not profess, provided only he can acquit himself a true soldier in the Jesuit army, and accomplish the work on which he has been sent forth. "We have men," exclaimed a General exultingly, as he glanced over the long roll of philosophers, orators, statesmen, and scholars who stood before him, ready to serve.
4. Moral Code of the Jesuits.
The Jesuit cut off from Country — from Family — from Property — from the Pope even — The End Sanctifies the Means — The First Great Commandment and Jesuit Morality — When may a Man Love God? — Second Great Commandment — Doctrine of Probabilism — The Jesuit Casuists — Pascal — The Direction of the Intention — Illustrative Cases furnished by Jesuit Doctors — Marvellous Virtue of the Doctrine — A Pious Assassination.
WE have not yet surveyed the full and perfect equipment of those troops which Loyola sent forth to prosecute the "heretics." Nothing was left untaught of and unprovided for which might assist them in covering their opponents with defeat, and crowning themselves with victory. They were set free from every obligation, whether imposed by the natural or the Divine law. Every stratagem, artifice, and disguise were lawful to men in whose favor all distinction between right and wrong had been abolished. They might assume as many shapes as Proteus, and exhibit as many colors as the chameleon. They stood apart and alone among the human race. First of all, they were cut off from country. Their vow bound them to go to whatever land their General might send them, and to remain there as long as he might appoint. Their country was the society. They were cut off from family and friends. Their vow taught them to forget their father's house, and to esteem themselves holy only when every affection and desire which nature had planted in their breasts had been plucked up by the roots. They were cut off from property and wealth. For although the society was immensely rich, its individual members possessed nothing. Nor could they cherish the hope of ever becoming personally wealthy, seeing they had taken a vow of perpetual poverty. If it chanced that a rich relative died, and left them as heirs, the General relieved them of their vow, and sent them back into the world, for so long a time as might enable them to take possession of the wealth of which they had been named the heirs; but this done, they returned laden with their booty, and, resuming their vow as Jesuits, laid every penny of their newly-acquired riches at the feet of the General.
They were cut off, moreover, from the State. They were discharged from all civil and national relationships and duties. They were under a higher code than the national one — the Institutions namely, which Loyola had edited, and the Spirit of God had inspired; and they were the subjects of a higher monarch than the sovereign of the nation — their own General. Nay, more, the Jesuits were cut off even from the Pope. For if their General "held the place of the Omnipotent God," much more did he hold the place of "his Vicar." And so was it in fact; for soon the members of the Society of Jesus came to recognize no laws but their own, and though at their first formation they professed to have no end but the defense and glory of the Papal See, it came to pass when they grew to be strong that, instead of serving the tiara, they compelled the tiara to serve the society, and made their own wealth, power, and dominion the one grand object of their existence. They were a Papacy within the Papacy — a Papacy whose organization was more perfect, whose instincts were more cruel, whose workings were more mysterious, and whose dominion was more destructive than that of the old Papacy.
So stood the Society of Jesus. A deep and wide gulf separated it from all other communities and interests. Set free from the love of family, from the ties of kindred, from the claims of country, and from the rule of law, careless of the happiness they might destroy, and the misery and pain and woe they might inflict, the members were at liberty, without control or challenge, to pursue their terrible end, which was the dethronement of other power, the extinction of other interest but their own, and the reduction of humans into slaves.
The key-note of their ethical code is the famous maxim that the end sanctifies the means. Before that maxim the eternal distinction of right and wrong vanishes. Not only do the stringency and sanctions of human law dissolve and disappear, but the authority and majesty of the Decalogue are overthrown. There are no conceivable crime, villainy, and atrocity which this maxim will not justify. Nay, such become dutiful and holy, provided they be done for "the greater glory of God," by which the Jesuit means the honor, interest, and advancement of His society.
In short, the Jesuit may do whatever he has a mind to do, all human and Divine laws notwithstanding. This is a very grave charge, but the evidence of its truth is, unhappily, too abundant, and the difficulty lies in making a selection.
The Jesuit doctors using their casuistry have done a lot to make sin look as no si. "The first and great commandment in the law," said the same Divine Person who proclaimed it from Sinai, "is to love the Lord thy God." The Jesuit casuists have set men free from the obligation to love God. Escobar collects the different sentiments of the famous divines of the Society of Jesus upon the question, When is a man obliged to have actually an affection for God? The following are some of these: — Suarez says, "It is sufficient a man love him before he dies, not assigning any particular time. Vasquez, that it is sufficient even at the point of death. Others, when a man receives his baptism: others, when he is obliged to be contrite: others, upon holidays. But our Father Castro-Palao disputes all these opinions, and that justly. Hurtado de Mendoza pretends that a man is obliged to do it once every year. Our Father Coninck believes a man to be obliged once in three or four years. Henriquez, once in five years. But Filiutius affirms it to be probable that in rigor a man is not obliged every five years. When then? He leaves the point to the wise." "We are not," says Father Sirmond, "so much commanded to love him as not to hate him,"
Thus do the Jesuit theologians make void "the first; and great commandment in the law."
The second commandment in the law is, "Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself." This second great commandment meets with no more respect at the hands of the Jesuits than the first. Their morality dashes both tables of the law in pieces; charity to man it makes void equally with the love of God. The methods by which this may be done are innumerable.
The first of these is termed probabilism. This is a device which enables a man to commit any act, be it ever so manifest a breach of the moral and Divine law, without the least restraint of conscience, remorse of mind, or guilt before God.
What is probabilism? By way of answer we shall suppose that a man has a great mind to do a certain act, of the lawfulness of which he is in doubt. He finds that there are two opinions upon the point: the one probably true, to the effect that the act is lawful; the other more probably true, to the effect that the act is sinful. Under the Jesuit regimen the man is at liberty to act upon the probable opinion. The act is probably wrong, nevertheless he is safe in doing it, in virtue of the doctrine of probabalism. It is important to ask, what makes all opinion probable? To make an opinion probable a Jesuit finds easy indeed. If a single doctor has pronounced in its favor, though a score of doctors may have condemned it, or if the man can imagine in his own mind something like a tolerable reason for doing the act, the opinion that it is lawful becomes probable. It will be hard to name an act for which a Jesuit authority may not be produced, and harder still to find a man whose invention is so poor as not to furnish him with what he deems a good reason for doing what he is inclined to, and therefore it may be pronounced impossible to instance a deed, however manifestly opposed to the light of nature and the law of God, which may not be committed under the shield of the monstrous dogma of probabilism.
We are neither indulging in satire nor incurring the charge of false-witness-bearing in this picture of Jesuit theology. "A person may do what he considers allowable," says Emmanuel Sa, of the Society of Jesus, "according to a probable opinion, although the contrary may be the more probable one. The opinion of a single grave doctor is all that is requisite." A yet greater doctor, Filiutius, of Rome, confirms him in this. "It is allowable," says he, "to follow the less probable opinion, even though it be the less safe one. That is the common judgment of modern authors." "Of two contrary opinions," says Paul Laymann, "touching the legality or illegality of any human action, every one may follow in practice or in action that which he should prefer, although it may appear to the agent himself less probable in theory." he adds: "A learned person may give contrary advice to different persons according to contrary probable opinions, whilst he still preserves discretion and prudence." We may say with Pascal, "These Jesuit casuists give us elbow-room at all events!"
It is and it is not is the motto of this theology. It is the true Lesbian rule which shapes itself according to that which we wish to measure by it. Would we have any action to be sinful, the Jesuit moralist turns this side of the code to us; would we have it to be lawful, he turns the other side. Right and wrong are put thus in our own power; we can make the same action a sin or a duty as we please, or as we deem it expedient. To steal the property, slander the character, violate the chastity, or spill the blood of a fellow-creature, is most probably wrong, but let us imagine some good to be got by it, and it is probably right. The Jesuit workers, for the sake of those who are dull of understanding and slow to apprehend the freedom they bring them, have gone into particulars and compiled lists of actions, esteemed sinful, unnatural, and abominable by the moral sense of all nations hitherto, but which, in virtue of this new morality, are no longer so, and they have explained how these actions may be safely done, with a minuteness of detail and a luxuriance of illustration, in which it were tedious in some cases, immodest in others, to follow them.
One would think that this was license enough. What more can the Jesuit need, or what more can he possibly have, seeing by a little effort, of invention he can overleap every human and Divine barrier, and commit the most horrible crimes, on the mightiest possible scale, and neither feel remorse of conscience nor fear of punishment? But this unbounded liberty of wickedness did not content the sons of Loyola. They panted for a liberty, if possible, yet more boundless; they wished to be released from the easy condition of imagining some good end for the wickedness they wished to perpetrate, and to be free to sin without the trouble of assigning even to themselves any end at all. This they have accomplished by the method of directing the intention.
This is a new ethical science, unknown to those ages which were not privileged to bask in the illuminating rays of the Society of Jesus, and it is as simple as convenient. It is the soul, they argue, that does the act, so far as it is moral or immoral. As regards the body's share in it, neither virtue nor vice can be predicated of it. If, therefore, while the hand is shedding blood, or the tongue is calumniating character, or uttering a falsehood, the soul can so abstract itself from what the body is doing as to occupy itself the while with some holy theme, or fix its meditation upon some benefit or advantage likely to arise from the deed, which it knows, or at least suspects, the body is at that moment engaged in doing, the soul contracts neither guilt nor stain, and the man runs no risk of ever being called to account for the murder, or theft, or calumny, by God, or of incurring his displeasure on that ground. We are not satirizing; we are simply stating the morality of the Jesuits. "We never," says the Father Jesuit in Pascal's Letters, "suffer such a thing as the formal intention to sin with the sole design of sinning; and if any person whatever should persist in having no other end but evil in the evil that he does, we break with him at once — such conduct is diabolical. This holds true, without exception, of age, sex, or rank. But when the person is not of such a wretched disposition as this, we try to put in practice our method of directing the intention, which simply consists in his proposing to himself, as the end of his actions, some allowable object. Not that we do not endeavor, as far as we can, to dissuade men from doing things forbidden; but when we cannot prevent the action, we at least, purify the motive, and thus correct the viciousness of the means by the goodness of the end. Such is the way in which our Fathers [of the society] have contrived to permit those acts of violence to which men usually resort in vindication of their honor. They have no more to do than to turn off the intention from the desire of vengeance, which is criminal, and to direct it to a desire to defend their honor, which, according to us, is quite warrantable. And in this way our doctors discharge all their duty towards God and towards man. By permitting the action they gratify the world; and by purifying the intention they give satisfaction to the Gospel. This is a secret, sir, which was entirely unknown to the ancients; the world is indebted for the discovery entirely to our doctors. You understand it now, I hope.
5. The Jesuit Teaching on Regicide, Murder, Lying, Theft, Etc.
The Maxims of the Jesuits on Reglcide — M. de la Chalotais' Report to the Parliament of Bretagne — Effects of Jesuit Doctrine as shown in History — Doctrine of Mental Equivocation — The Art of Swearing Falsely without Sin — The Seventh Commandment — Jesuit Doctrine on Blasphemy — Murder — Lying — Theft — An Illustrative Case from Pascal — Every Precept of the Decalogue made Void — Jesuit Morality the Consummation of the Wickedness of the Fall.
THE three great rules of the code of the Jesuits, which we have stated in the foregoing chapter — namely,
But if the liberty with which these three maxims endow the Jesuit cannot be made larger, its particular applications may nevertheless be made more pointed, and the man who holds back from using it in all its extent may be emboldened, despite his remaining scruples, or the dullness of his intellectual perceptions, to avail himself to the utmost of the advantages it offers, "for the greater glory of God." He is to be taught, not merely by general rules, but by specific examples, how he may sin and yet not become sinful; how he may break the law and yet not suffer the penalty. But, further, these sons of Loyola are the kings of the world, and the sole heirs of all its wealth, honors, and pleasures; and whatever law, custom, sacred and venerable office, august and kingly authority, may stand between them and their rightful lordship over mankind, they are at liberty to throw down and tread into the dust as a vile and accursed thing. The moral maxims of the Jesuits are to be put in force against kings as well as against peasants.
The lawfulness of killing excommunicated, that is "heretics," kings, the Jesuit writers have been at great pains to maintain, and by a great variety of arguments to defend and enforce. The proof is as abundant as it is painful. M. de la Chalotais reports to the Parliament of Bretagne, as the result of his examination of the laws and doctrines of the Jesuits, that on this point there is a complete and startling unanimity in their teaching. By the same logical track do the whole host of Jesuit writers arrive at the same terrible conclusion, the slaughter, namely, of the sovereign on whom the Pope has pronounced sentence of deposition. If he shall take meekly his extrusion from Power, and seek neither to resist nor revenge his being hurled from his throne, his life may be spared; but should "he persist in disobedience," says M. de la Chalotais, himself a Papist, and addressing a Popish Parliament, "he may be treated as a tyrant, in which case anybody may kill him Such is the course of reasoning established by all authors of the society, who have written ex professo on these subjects — Bellarmine, Suarez, Molina, Mariana, Santarel — all the Ultramontanes without exception, since the establishment of the society."
But have not the writers of this school expressed in no measured terms their abhorrence of murder? Have they not loudly exclaimed against the sacrilege of touching him on whom the Church's anointing oil has been poured as king? In short, do they not forbid and condemn the crime of regicide? Yes: this is true; but they protest with a warmth that is fitted to awaken suspicion. Rome can take back her anointing, and when she has stripped the monarch of his office he becomes the lawful victim of her consecrated dagger. On what grounds, the Jesuits demand, can the killing of one who is no longer a king be called regicide? Suarez tells us that when a king is deposed he is no longer to be regarded as a king, but as a tyrant: "he therefore loses his authority, and from that moment may be lawfully killed." Nor is the opinion of the Jesuit Mariana less decided. Speaking of a prince, he says: "If he should overthrow the religion of the country, and introduce a public enemy within the State, I shall never consider that man to have done wrong, who, favoring the public wishes, would attempt to kill him... It is useful that princes should be made to know, that if they oppress the State and become intolerable by their vices and their pollution, they hold their lives upon this tenure, that to put them to death is not only laudable, but a glorious action... It is a glorious thing to exterminate this pestilent and mischievous race from the community of men."
Wherever the Jesuits have planted missions, opened seminaries, and established colleges, they have been careful to inculcate these principles in the minds of the youth; thus sowing the seeds of future tumults, revolutions, regicides, and wars. These evil fruits have appeared sometimes sooner, sometimes later, but they have never failed to show themselves, to the grief of nations and the dismay of kings. John Chatel, who attempted the life of Henry IV., had studied in the College of Clermont, in which the Jesuit Guignard was Professor of Divinity. In the chamber of the would-be regicide, a manuscript of Guignard was found, in which, besides other dangerous articles, that Father approved not only of the assassination of Henry III. by Clement, but also maintained that the same thing ought to be attempted against le Bearnois, as he called Henry IV., which occasioned the first banishment of the order out of France, as a society detestable and diabolical. The sentence of the Parliament, passed in 1594, ordained "that all the priests and scholars of the College of Clermont, and others calling themselves the Society of Jesus, as being corrupters of youth, disturbers of the public peace, and enemies of the king and State, should depart in three days from their house and college, and in fifteen days out of the whole kingdom."
But why should we dwell on these written proofs of the disloyal and murderous principles of the Jesuits, when their acted deeds bear still more emphatic testimony to the true nature and effects of their principles? We have only to look around, and on every hand the melancholy monuments of these doctrines meet our afflicted sight. To what country of Europe shall we turn where we are not able to track the Jesuit by his bloody foot-prints? What page of modern history shall we open and not read fresh proofs that the Papal doctrine of killing excommunicated kings was not meant to slumber in forgotten tomes, but to be acted out in the living world? We see Henry III. falling by their dagger. Henry IV. perishes by the same consecrated weapon. The King of Portugal dies by their order.
The great Prince of Orange is dispatched by their agent, shot down at the door of his own dining-room. How many assassins they sent to England to murder Elizabeth, history attests. That she escaped their machinations is one of the marvels of history. Nor is it only the palaces of monarchs into which they have crept with their doctrines of murder and assassination; the very sanctuary of their own Popes they have defiled with blood. We behold Clement XIV signing the order for the banishment of the Jesuits, and soon thereafter he is overtaken by their vengeance, and dies by poison. In the Gunpowder Plot we see them deliberately planning to destroy at one blow the nobility and gentry of England. To them we owe those civil wars which for so many years drenched with blood the fair provinces of France. They laid the train of that crowning horror, the St. Bartholomew massacre. Philip II and the Jesuits share between them the guilt of the "Invincible Armada," which, instead of inflicting the measureless ruin and havoc which its authors intended, by a most merciful Providence became the means of exhausting the treasures and overthrowing the prestige of Spain. What a harvest of plots, tumults, seditions, revolutions, torturings, poisonings, assassinations, regicides, and massacres has Christendom reaped from the seed sown by the Jesuits! Nor can we be sure that we have yet seen the last and greatest of their crimes.
We can bestow only the most cursory glance at the teaching of the Jesuits under the other heads of moral duty. Let us take their doctrine of mental reservation. Nothing can be imagined more heinous and, at the same time, more dangerous. "The doctrine of equivocation," says Blackwell, "is for the consolation of afflicted Roman Catholics and the instruction of all the godly." It has been of special use to them when residing among infidels and heretics. In heathen countries, as China and Malabar, they have professed conformity to the rites and the worship of paganism, while remaining Roman Catholics at heart, and they have taught their converts to venerate their former deities in appearance, on the strength of directing aright the intention, and the pious fraud of concealing a crucifix under their clothes.
Equivocation they have carried into civil life as well as into religion. "A man may swear," says Sanchez, "that he hath not done a thing though he really have, by understanding within himself that he did it not on such and such a day, or before he was born; or by reflecting on some other circumstance of the like nature; and yet the words he shall make use of shall not have a sense implying any such thing; and this is a thing of great convenience on many occasions, and is always justifiable when it is necessary or advantageous in anything that concerns a man's health, honor, or estate." Filiutius, in his Moral Questions, asks, "Is it wrong to use equivocation in swearing? I answer, first, that it is not in itself a sin to use equivocation in swearing This is the common doctrine after Suarez." Is it perjury or sin to equivocate in a just cause?" he further asks. "It is not perjury," he answers. "As, for example, in the case of a man who has outwardly made a promise without the intention of promising; if he is asked whether he has promised, he may deny it, meaning that he has not promised with a binding promise; and thus he may swear."
Filiutius asks yet again, "With what precaution is equivocation to be used? When we begin, for instance, to say, I swear, we must insert in a subdued tone the mental restriction, that today, and then continue aloud, I have not eaten such a thing; or, I swear — then insert, I say — then conclude in the same loud voice, that I have not done this or that thing; for thus the whole speech is most true.
What an admirable lesson in the art of speaking the truth to one's self, and lying and swearing falsely to everybody else.
We shall offer no comment on the teaching of the Jesuits under the head of the seventh commandment. The doctrines of the society which relate to chastity are screened from exposure by the very enormity of their turpitude. We pass them as we would the open grave, whose putrid breath kills all who inhale it. Let all who value the sweetness of a pure imagination, and the joy of a conscience undefiled, shun the confessional as they would the chamber in which the plague is shut up, or the path in which lurks the deadly scorpion. The teaching of the Jesuits — everywhere deadly — is here a poison that consumes flesh, and bones, and soul.
Which precept of the Decalogue is it that the theology of the Jesuits does not set aside? We are commanded "to fear the great and dreadful name of the Lord our God." The Jesuit Bauny teaches us to blaspheme it. "If one has been hurried by passion into cursing and doing despite to his Maker, it may be determined that he has only sinned venially." This is much, but Casnedi goes a little farther. "Do what your conscience tells you to be good, and commanded," says this Jesuit; "if through invincible error you believe lying or blasphemy to be commanded by God, blaspheme." The license given by the Jesuits to regicide we have already seen; not less ample is the provision their theology makes for the perpetration of ordinary homicides and murders. Reginald says it is lawful to kill a false witness, seeing otherwise one should be killed by him. Parents who seek to turn their children from the faith, says Fagundez, "may justly be killed by them."
The Jesuit Amicus teaches that it is lawful for an ecclesiastic, or one in a religious order, to kill a calumniator when other means of defense are wanting. And Airult extends the same privilege to laymen. If one brings an impeachment before a prince or judge against another, and if that other cannot by any means avert the injury to his character, he may kill him secretly. He fortifies his opinion by the authority of Bannez, who gives the same latitude to the right of defense, with this slight qualification, that the calumniator should first be warned that he desist from his slander, and if he will not, he should be killed, not openly, on account of the scandal, but secretly.
Of a like ample kind is the liberty which the Jesuits permit to be taken with the property of one's neighbor. Dishonesty in all its forms they sanction. They encourage cheats, frauds, purloinings, robberies, by furnishing men with a ready justification of these misdeeds, and especially by persuading their votaries that if they will only take the trouble of doing them in the way of directing the intention according to their instructions, they need not fear being called to a reckoning for them hereafter. The Jesuit Emmanuel Sa teaches "that it is not a mortal sin to take secretly from him who would give if he were asked;" that "it is not theft to take a small thing from a husband or a father;" that if one has taken what he doubts to have been his own, that doubt makes it probable that it is safe to keep it; that if one, from an urgent necessity, or without causing much loss, takes wood from another man's pile, he is not obliged to restore it. One who has stolen small things at different times, is not obliged to make restitution till such time as they amount together to a considerable sum. But should the purloiner feel restitution burdensome, it may comfort him to know that some Fathers deny it with probability.
The case of merchants, whose gains may not be increasing so fast as they could wish, has been kindly considered by the Fathers. Francis Tolet says that if a man cannot sell his wine at a fair price — that is, at a fair profit — he may mix a little water with his wine, or diminish his measure, and sell it for pure wine of full measure. Of course, if it be lawful to mix wine, it is lawful to adulterate all other articles of merchandise, or to diminish the weight, and go on vending as if the balance were just and the article genuine. Only the trafficker in spurious goods, with false balances, must be careful not to tell a lie; or if he should be compelled to equivocate, he must do it in accordance with the rules laid down by the Fathers for enabling one to say what is not true without committing falsehood.
Domestic servants also have been taken by the Fathers under the shield of their casuistry. Should a servant deem his wages not enough, or the food, clothing, and other necessaries provided for him not equal to that which is provided for servants of similar rank in other houses, he may recompense himself by abstracting from his master's property as much as shall make his wages commensurate with his services. So has Valerius Reginald decided.
It is fair, however, that the pupil be cautioned that this lesson cannot safely be put in practice against his teacher. The story of John d'Alba, related by Pascal, shows that the Fathers do not relish these doctrines in praxis nearly so well as in thesis, when they themselves are the sufferers by them. D'Alba was a servant to the Fathers in the College of Clermont, in the Rue St. Jacques, and thinking that his wages were not equal to his merits, he stole somewhat from his masters to. make up the discrepancy, never dreaming that they would make a criminal of him for following their approved rules. However, they threw him into prison on a charge of larceny. He was brought to trial on the 16th April, 1647. He confessed before the court to having taken some pewter plates, but maintained that the act was not to be regarded as a theft, on the strength of this same doctrine of Father Bauny, which he produced before the judges, with attestation from another of the Fathers, under whom he had studied these cases of conscience. Whereupon the judge, M. de Montrouge, gave sentence as follows: — "That the prisoner should not be acquitted upon the writings of these Fathers, containing a doctrine so unlawful, pernicious, and contrary to all laws, natural, Divine, and human, such as might confound all families, and authorize all domestic frauds and infidelities;" but that the over-faithful disciple "should be whippet before the College gate of Clermont by the common executioner, who at the same time should burn all the writings of those Fathers treating of theft; and that they should be prohibited to teach any such doctrine again under pain of death."
But we should swell beyond all reasonable limit, our enumeration, were we to quote even a tithe of the "moral maxims" of the Jesuits. There is not One in the long catalogue of sins and crimes which their casuistry does not sanction. Pride, ambition, avarice, luxury, bribery, and a host of vices which we cannot specify, and some of which are too horrible to be mentioned, find in these Fathers their patrons and defenders. The alchemists of the Middle Ages boasted that their art enabled them to operate on the essence of things, and to change what was vile into what was noble. But the still darker art of the Jesuits acts in the reverse order; it changes all that is noble into all that is vile. Theirs is an accursed alchemy by which they transmute good into evil, and virtue into vice. There is no destructive agency with which the world is liable to be visited, that penetrates so deep, or inflicts so remediless a ruin, as the morality of the Jesuits. The tornado sweeps along over the surface of the globe, leaving the earth naked and effaced and forgotten in the greater splendor and the more solid strength of the restored structures. Revolution may overturn thrones, abolish laws, and break in pieces the framework of society; but when the fury of faction has spent its rage, order emerges from the chaos, law resumes its supremacy, and the bare as before tree or shrub beautified it; but the summers of after years re-clothe it with verdure and beautify it with flowers, and make it smile as sweetly as before. The earthquake overturns the dwelling of man, and swallows up the proudest of his cities; but his skill and power survive the shock, and when the destroyer has passed, the architect sets up again the fallen palace, and rebuilds the ruined city, and the catastrophe is effaced and forgotten in the greater splendor and the more solid strength of the restored structures. Revolution may overturn thrones, abolish laws, and break in pieces the framework of society; but when the fury of faction has spent its rage, order emerges from the chaos, law resumes its supremacy, and the institutions which had been destroyed in the hour of madness, are restored in the hour of calm wisdom that succeeds. But the havoc the Jesuit inflicts is irremediable. It has nothing in it counteractive or restorative; it is only evil. It is not upon the works of man or the institutions of man merely that, it puts forth its fearfully destructive power; it is upon man himself. It is not the body of man that it strikes, like the pestilence; it is the soul. It is not a part, but the whole of man that it consigns to corruption and ruin. Conscience it destroys, knowledge it extinguishes, the very power of discerning between right and wrong it takes away, and shuts up the man in a prison whence no created agency or influence can set him free. The Fall defaced the image of God in which man was made; we say, defaced; it did not totally obliterate or extinguish it. Jesuitism, more terrible than the Fall, totally effaces from the soul of man the image of God. Of the "knowledge, righteousness, and true holiness" in which man was made it leaves not a tree. It plucks up by its very roots the moral constitution which God gave man. The full triumph of Jesuitism would leave nothing spiritual, nothing moral, nothing intellectual, nothing strictly and properly human existing upon the earth.
 Father Antoine Escobar, of Mendoza. He is said by his friends to have been a good man, and a laborious student. He compiled a work in six volumes, entitled Exposition of Uncontroverted Opinions in Moral Theology. It afforded a rich field for the satire of Pascal. Its characteristic absurdity is that its questions uniformly exhibit two faces — an affirmative and a negative — so that escobarderie became a synonym in France for duplicity.
 Ferdinand de Castro-Palao was a Jesuit of Spain, and author of a work on Virtues and Vices, published in 1621.
 Escobar. tr. 1, ex. 2, n. 21; and tr. 5, ex. 4, n. 8. Sirmond, Def. Virt., tr. 2, sec. 1.
 It is of no avail to object that these are the sentiments of individual Jesuits, and that it is not fair to impute them to the society. It was a particular rule in the Company of Jesus, "that nothing should be published by any of its members without the approbation of their superiors." An express order was made obliging them to this in France by Henry III., 1583, confirmed by Henry IV., 1603, and by Louis XIII., 1612. So that the whole fraternity became responsible for all the doctrines taught in the books of its individual members, unless they were expressly condemned.
 Probabilism will be denied, but it has not been renounced. In a late publication a member of the society has actually attempted to vindicate it. See De l'Existence et de l'Institute des Jesuites. Par le R, P. de Ravignan, de la Compagnie de Jesus. Paris, 1845. Page 83.
 Pascal. Provincial Letters, p. 70; Edin., 1847.
 The Provincial Letters. Letter 8, p. 96; Edin., 1847.
 "A quocum que privato potest interfici." — Suarez (1, 6, ch. 4) — Chalotais, Report Constit. Jesuits, p. 84.
 "There are," adds M. de la Chalotais, in a footnote, "nearly 20,000 Jesuits in the world , all imbued with Ultramontane doctrines, and the doctrine of murder." That is more than a century ago. Their numbers have prodigiously increased since.
 Maxiana,. De Rege et Regis Institutione, lib. 1, cap. 6, p. 61, and lib. 1, cap. 7, p. 64; ed. 1640.
 Sanch. OP. Mot., pars. 2, lib. 3, cap. 6.
 Mor. Quest. de Christianis 0fficiis et Casibus Conscientice, tom. 2, tr. 25, cap. 11, n. 321-328; Lugduni, 1633.
 It is easy to see how these precepts may be put in practice in swearing the oath of allegiance, or promising to obey the law, or engaging not to attack the institutions of the State, or to obey the rules and further the ends of any society, lay or clerical, into which the Jesuit may enter. The swearer has only to repeat aloud the prescribed words, and insert silently such other words, at the fitting places, as shall make void the oath, clause by clause — nay, bind the swearer to the very opposite of that which the administrator of the oath intends to pledge him to.
 Stephen Bauny, Som. des Peches; Rouen, 1653.
 Crisis Theol., tom. 1, disp. 6, sect. 2, Section 1, n. 59.
 Praxis Fori Poenit., tom. 2, lib. 21, cap. 5, n. 57.
 In Proecep. Decal., tom. 1, lib. 4, cap. 2, n. 7, 8.
 Cursus Theol., tom. 5,disp. 36, sec. 5, n. 118.
 Cens., pp. 319, 320 — Collation faite d la requete de l'U'niversite de Paris, 1643; Paris, 1720
 Aphorismi Confessariorum — verbo furtum, n. 3 — 8; Coloniae, 1590.
 Instruct to Sacerdotum — De Septera Peccat. Mort., cap. 49, n. 5; Romae, 1601.
 Praxis Fori Peenitentialis, lib. 25, cap. 44, n. 555; Lugduni, 1620.
 Pascal, Letter 6, pp. 90,91; Edin., 1847.
6. The "Secret Instructions" of the Jesuits.
The Jesuit Soldier in Armor complete — Secret Instructions — How to Plant their First Establishments — Taught to Court the Parochial Clergy — to Visit the Hospitals — to Find out the Wealth of their several Districts — to make Purchases in another Name — to Draw the Youth round them — to Supplant the Older Orders — How to get the Friendship of Great Men — How to Manage Princes — How to Direct their Policy — Conduct their Embassies — Appoint their Servants, etc. — Taught to Affect a Great Show of Lowliness.
SO far we have traced the enrollment and training of that mighty army which Loyola had called into existence to fight the "heretics" (the Greek Orthodox were counted among them). Their leader, who was quite as much the shrewd calculator as the fiery fanatic, took care before sending his soldiers into the field to provide them with armor, every way fitted for the combatants they were to meet, and the campaign they were to wage. The war in which they were to be occupied was one against right and truth, against knowledge and liberty, and where could weapons be found for the successful prosecution of a conflict like this, save in the old-established arsenal of sophisms. The schoolmen, those Vulcans of the Middle Ages, had forged these weapons with the hammers of their speculation on the anvil of their subtlety, and having made them sharp of edge, and given them an incomparable flexibility, they stored them up, and kept them in reserve against the great coming day of battle. To this armory Loyola, and the chiefs that succeeded him in command, had recourse. But not content with these weapons as the schoolmen had left them, the Jesuit doctors put them back again into the fire; they kept them in a furnace, heated seven times, till every particle of the dross of right and truth that cleaved to them had been purged out, and they had acquired a flexibility absolutely and altogether perfect, and a keenness of edge unattained before, and were now deemed every way fit for the hands that were to wield them, and every way worthy of the cause in which they were to be drawn. So attempered, they could cut through shield and helmet, through body and soul of the foe.
Let us survey the soldier of Loyola, as he stands in the complete and perfect panoply his General has provided him with. How admirably harnessed for the battle he is to fight! He has his "loins girt about with" mental and verbal equivocation; he has "on the breast-plate of" probabilism; his "feet are shod with the preparation of the" Secret Instruction. "Above all, taking the shield of" intention, and rightly handling it, he is "able to quench all the fiery darts of" human remorse and Divine threatenings. He takes "for an helmet the hope of" Paradise, which has been most surely promised him as the reward of his services; and in his hand he grasps the two-edged sword of a fiery fanaticism, wherewith he is able to cut his way, with prodigious bravery, through truth and righteousness.1
Verily, the man who has to sustain the onset of soldiers like these, and parry the thrusts of their weapons, had need to be mindful of the ancient admonition, "Take unto you the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand."
Shrewd, practical, and precise are the instructions of the Jesuits. First of all they are told to select the best points in that great field, all of which they are in due time to subjugate and possess. That field is Christendom. They are to begin by establishing convents, or colleges, in the chief cities. The great centers of population and wealth secured, the smaller places will be easily occupied.
Should any one ask on what errand the good Fathers have come, they are instructed to make answer that their "sole object is the salvation of souls." What a pious errand! Who would not strive to be the first to welcome to their houses, and to seat at their tables, men whose aims are so unselfish and heavenly? They are to be careful to maintain a humble and submissive deportment; they are to pay frequent visits to the hospitals, the sick-chamber, and the prisons. They are to make great show of charity, and as they have nothing of their own to give to the poor, they are "to go far and near" to receive even the "smallest atoms." These good deeds will not lose their reward if only they take care not to do them in secret. Men will begin to speak of them and say, What a humble, pious, charitable order of men these Fathers of the Society of Jesus are! How unlike the Franciscans and Dominicans, who were want to care for the sick and the poor, but have now forgotten the virtues of a former tune, and are grown proud, indolent, luxurious, and rich! Thus the "new-comers," the Instructions hint, will supplant the other and older orders, and will receive "the respect and reverence of the best and most eminent in the neighborhood."2
Further, they are enjoined to conduct themselves very deferentially towards the parochial clergy, and not to perform any sacred function till first they have piously and submissively asked the bishop’s leave. This will secure their good graces, and dispose the secular clergy to protect them; but by-and-by, when they have ingratiated themselves with the people, they may abate somewhat of this subserviency to the clergy. The individual Jesuit takes a vow of poverty, but the society takes no such vow, and is qualified to hold property to any amount. Therefore, while seeking the salvation of souls, the members are carefully to note the rich men in the community. They must find out who own the estates in the neighborhood, and what are their yearly values. They are to secure these estates by gift, if possible; if not, by purchase. When it happens that they "get anything that is considerable, let the purchase be made under a strange name, by some of our friends, that our poverty may still seem the greater."3 And let our provincial "assign such revenues to some other colleges, more remote, that neither prince nor people may discover anything of our profits"4 — a device that combines many advantages. Every day their acres will increase, nevertheless their apparent poverty will be as great as ever, and the flow of benefactions and legacies to supply it will remain undiminished, although the sea into which all these rivers run will never be full. Among the multifarious duties laid upon the Jesuits, special prominence was given to the instruction of youth. It was by this arm that they achieved their most brilliant success. "Whisper it sweetly in their [the people’s] ears, that they are come to catechise the children gratis."5
Wherever the Jesuits came they opened schools, and gathered the youth around them; but despite their zeal in the work of education, knowledge somehow did not increase. The intellect refused to expand and the genius to open under their tutelage. Kingdoms like Poland, where they became the privileged and only instructors of youth, instead of taking a higher place in the commonwealth of letters, fell back into mental decrepitude, and lost their rank in the community of nations. The Jesuits communicated to their pupils little besides a knowledge of Latin. History, philosophy, and science were sealed books. They initiated their disciples into the mysteries of probabilism, and the art of directing the intention, and the youth trained in these paths, when old did not depart from them. They dwarfed the intellect and narrowed the understanding, but they gained their end. They stamped anew the Roman impress upon many of the countries of Europe. The second chapter of The Instructions is entitled "What must be done to get the ear and intimacy of great men?" To stand well with monarchs and princes is, of course, a matter of such importance that no stone is to be left unturned to attain it. The Instructions here, as we should expect them to be, are full and precise. The members of the Society of Jesus are first of all to imbue princes and great men with the belief that they cannot dispense with their aid if they would maintain the pomp of their State, and the government of their realms. Should princes be filled with a conceit of their own wisdom, the Fathers must find some way of dispelling this egregious delusion. They are to surround them with confessors chosen from their society; but by no means are they to bear hard on the consciences of their royal penitents. They must treat them "sweetly and pleasantly," oftener administering opiates than irritants. They are to study their humors, and if, in the matter of marriage, they should be inclined — as often happens with princes — to contract alliance with their own kindred, they are to smooth their way, by hinting at a dispensation from the Pope, or finding some palliative for the sin from the pharmacopoeia of their theology. They may tell them that such marriages, though forbidden to the commonalty, are sometimes allowed to princes, "for the greater glory of God."6
If a monarch is bent on some enterprise — a war, for example — the issue of which is doubtful, they are to be at pains so to shape their counsel in the matter, that if the affair succeeds they shall have all the praise, and if it fails, the blame shall rest with the king alone. And, lastly, when a vacancy occurs near the throne, they are to take care that the empty post shall be filled by one of the tried friends of the society, of whom they are enjoined to have, at all times, a list in their possession. It may be well, in order still more to advance their interests at courts, to undertake embassies at times. This will enable them to draw the affairs of Europe into their own hands, and to make princes feel that they are indispensable to them, by showing them what an influence they wield at the courts of other sovereigns, and especially how great their power is at that of Rome. Small services and trifling presents they are by no means to overlook. Such things go a great way in opening the hearts of princes. Be sure, say The Instructions, to paint the men whom the prince dislikes in the same colors in which his jealousy and hatred teach him to view them. Moreover, if the prince is unmarried, it will be a rare stroke of policy to choose a wife for him from among the beautiful and noble ladies known to their society. "This is seen," say The Instructions, "by experience in the House of Austria: and in the Kingdoms of Poland and France, and in many other principalities."7
"We must endeavor," say The Instructions, with remarkable plainness, but in the belief, doubtless, that the words would meet the faithful eyes of the members of the Society of Jesus only: "We must endeavor to breed dissension among great men, and raise seditions, or anything a prince would have us to do to please him. If one who is chief Minister of State to a monarch who is our friend oppose us, and that prince cast his whole favors upon him, so as to add titles to his honor, we must present ourselves before him, and court him in the highest degree, as well by visits as all humble respect."8 Having specified the arts by which princes may be managed, the Instructions next prescribe certain methods for turning to account others "of great authority in the commonwealth, that by their credit we obtain profit and preferment."
"If," say the Instructions,9 "these lords be seculars, we ought to have recourse to their aid and friendship against our adversaries, and to their favor in our own suits, and those of our friends, and to their authority and power in the purchase of houses, manors, and gardens, and of stones to build with, especially in those places that will not endure to hear of our settling in them, because the authority of these lords serveth very much for the appeasing of the populace, and making our ill-willers quiet." Nor are they less sedulously to make court to the bishops. Their authority — great everywhere — is especially so in some kingdoms, "as in Germany, Poland, and France;" and, the bishops conciliated, they may expect to obtain a gift of "new-erected churches, altars, monasteries, foundations, and in some cases the benefices of the secular priests and canons, with the preferable right of preaching in all the great towns." And when bishops so befriend them, they are to be taught that there is no less profit than merit in the deed; inasmuch as, done to the Order of Jesus, they are sure to be repaid with most substantial services; whereas, done to the other orders, they will have nothing in return for their pains "but a song."10
To love their neighbor, and speak well of him, while they held themselves in lowly estimation, was not one of the failings of the Jesuits. Their own virtues they were to proclaim as loudly as they did the faults of their brother monks. Their Instructions commanded them to "imprint upon the spirits of those princes who love us, that our order is more perfect than all other orders." They are to supplant their rivals, by telling monarchs that no wisdom is competent to counsel in the affairs of State but "ours," and that if they wish to make their realms resplendent with knowledge, they must surrender the schools to Jesuit teachers. They are especially to exhort princes that they owe it as a duty to God to consult them in the distribution of honors and emoluments, and in all appointments to places of importance. Further, they are ever to have a list in their possession of the names of all persons in authority and power throughout Christendom, in order that they may change or continue them fit their several posts, as may be expedient. But so covertly must this delicate business be gone about, that their hand must not be seen in it, nor must it once be suspected that the change comes from them! While slowly and steadily climbing up to the control of kings, and the government of kingdoms, they are to study great modesty of demeanor and simplicity of life. The pride must be worn in the heart, not on the brow; and the foot must be set down softly that is to be planted at last on the neck of monarchs. "Let ours that are in the service of princes," say the Instructions, "keep but a very little money, and a few movables, contenting themselves with a little chamber, modestly keeping company with persons in humble station; and so being in good esteem, they ought prudently to persuade princes to do nothing without their counsel, whether it be in spiritual or temporal affairs."11
1 See Ephesians 6:14-17.
2 Secreta Monita, cap. 1, sec. 1.
3 Ibid., cap. 1, sec. 5.
4 Ibid., cap. 1, sec. 6.
5 Ibid. (tr. from a French copy, London, 1679), cap. 1, sec. 11.
6 Secreta Monita, cap. 2, sec. 2.
7 Secreta Monita, cap. 2, sec. 5.
8 Ibid., cap. 2, sec. 9, 10.
9 Ibid., cap. 3, sec. 1.
10 "Praeter cantum." (Secreta Monita, cap. 3, sec. 3.)
11 Secreta Monita, cap. 4, sec. 1-6.
7. Jesuit Management of Rich Widows and the Heirs of Great Families.
How Rich Widows are to be Drawn to the Chapels and Confessionals of the Jesuits — Kept from Thoughts of a Second Marriage — Induced to Enter an Order, and Bequeath their Estates to the Society — Sons and Daughters of Widows — How to Discover the Revenues and Heirs of Noble Houses — Illustration from Spain — Borrowing on Bond — The instructions to be kept Secret — If Discovered, to be Denied — How the Instructions came to Light. THE sixth chapter of the Instructions treats "Of the Means to acquire the Friendship of Rich Widows." On opening this new chapter, the reflection that forces itself on one is — how wide the range of objects to which the Society of Jesus is able to devote its attention! The greatest matters are not beyond its strength, and the smallest are not beneath its notice! From counseling monarchs, and guiding ministers of State, it turns with equal adaptability and dexterity to caring for widows. The Instructions on this head are minute and elaborate to a degree, which shows the importance the society attaches to the due discharge of what it owes to this class of its clients.
True, some have professed to doubt whether the action of the society in this matter be wholly and purely disinterested, from the restriction it puts upon the class of persons taken under its protection. The Instructions do not say "widows," but "rich widows." But all the more on that account do widows need defense against the arts of chicanery and the wiles of avarice, and how can the Fathers better accord them such than by taking measures to convey their bodies and their goods alike within the safe walls of a convent? There the cormorants and vultures of a wicked world cannot make them their prey. But let us mark how they are to proceed. First, a Father of suitable gifts is to be selected to begin operations. He must not, in point of years, exceed middle age; he must have a fresh complexion, and a gracious discourse. He is to visit the widow, to touch feelingly on her position, and the snares and injuries to which it exposes her, and to hint at the fraternal care that the society of which he is a member delights to exercise over all in her condition who choose to place themselves under its guardianship. After a few visits of this sort, the widow will probably appear at one of the chapels of the society. Should it so happen, the next step is to appoint a confessor of their body for the widow. Should these delicate steps be well got over, the matter will begin to be hopeful. It will be the confessor’s duty to see that the wicked idea of marrying again does not enter her mind, and for this end he is to picture to her the delightful and fascinating freedom she enjoys in her widowhood, and over against it he is to place the cares, vexations, and tyrannies which a second matrimony would probably draw upon her.
To second these representations, the confessor is empowered to promise exemption from purgatory, should the holy estate of widowhood be persevered in. To maintain this pious frame of mind on the part of the object of these solicitudes, the Instructions direct that it may be advisable to have an oratory erected in her house, with an altar, and frequent mass and confession celebrated thereat. The adorning of the altar, and the accompanying rites, will occupy the time of the widow, and prevent the thoughts of a husband entering her mind. The matter having been conducted to this stage, it will be prudent now to change the persons of trust about her, and to replace them with persons devoted to the society. The number of religious services must also be increased, especially confession, "so that," say the Instructions, "knowing their former accusations, manners, and inclinations, the whole may serve as a guide to make them obey our wills."1
These steps will have brought the widow very near the door of a convent. A continuance a little longer in the same cautious and skillful tactics is all that will be necessary to land her safely within its walls. The confessor must now enlarge on the quietude and eminent sanctity of the cloister how surely it conducts to Paradise; but should she be unwilling to assume the veil in regular form, she may be induced to enter some religious order, such as that of Paulina, "so that being caught in the vow of chastity, all danger of her marrying again may be over."2
The great duty of Alms, that queen of the graces, "without which, it is to be represented to her, she cannot inherit the kingdom of heaven," is now to be pressed upon her; "which alms, notwithstanding, she ought not to dispose to every one, if it be not by the advice and with the consent of her spiritual father."3
Under this Direction it is easy to see in what exchequer the lands, manors, and revenues of widows will ultimately be garnered. But the Fathers deemed it inexpedient to leave such an issue the least uncertain, and accordingly the seventh chapter enters largely into the "Means of keeping in our hands the Disposition of the Estates of Widows." To shut out worldly thoughts, and especially matrimonial ones, the time of such widows must be occupied with their devotions; they are to be exhorted to curtail their expenditure and abound yet more in alms "to the Church of Jesus Christ." A dexterous confessor is to be appointed them. They are to be frequently visited, and entertained with pleasant discourse. They are to be persuaded to select a patron, or tutelary saint, say St. Francis or St. Xavier. Provision is to be made that all they do be known, by placing about them only persons recommended by the society. We must be excused for not giving in the words of the Fathers the fourteenth section of this chapter. That section gives their protégés great license, indeed all license, "provided they be liberal and well-affected to our society, and that all things be carried cunningly and without scandal." But the one great point to be aimed at is to get them to make an entire surrender of their estates to the society. This is to reach perfection now, and it may be to attain in future the yet higher reward of canonisation. But should it so happen, from love of kindred, or other motives, that they have not endowed the "poor companions of Jesus" with all their worldly goods, when they come to die, the preferable claims of "the Church of Jesus Christ" to those of kindred are to be urged upon them, and they are to be exhorted "to contribute to the finishing of our colleges, which are yet imperfect, for the greater glory of God, giving us lamps and pixes, and for the building of other foundations and houses, which we, the poor servants of the Society of Jesus, do still want, that all things may be perfected."4
"Let the same be done with princes," the Instructions go on to say, "and our other benefactors, who build us any sumptuous pile, or erect any foundation, representing to them, in the first place, that the benefits they thus do us are consecrated to eternity; that they shall become thereby perfect models of piety; that we will have thereof a very particular memory, and that in the next world they shall have their reward. But if it be objected that Jesus Christ was born in a stable, and had not where to lay his head, and that we, who are his companions, ought not to enjoy perishing goods, we ought to imprint strongly on their spirits that in truth, at first, the Church was also in the same state, but now that by the providence of God she is raised to a monarchy, and that in those times the Church was nothing but a broken rock, which is now become a great mountain."5
In the chapter that follows — the eighth, namely — the net is spread still wider. It is around the feet of "the sons and daughters of devout widows" that its meshes are now drawn. The scheme of machination and seduction unfolded in this chapter differs only in its minor points from that which we have already had disclosed to us. We pass it therefore, and go on to the ninth chapter, where we find the scheme still widening, and wholesale rapacity and extortion, sanctified of course by the end in view, still more openly avowed and enjoined. The chapter is entitled "Of the Means to Augment the Revenues of our Colleges," and these means, in short, are the astute and persistent deception, circumvention, and robbery of every class. The net is thrown, almost without disguise, over the whole community, in order that the goods, heritages, and possessions of all ranks — prince, peasant, widow, and orphan — may be dragged into the convents of the Jesuits. The world is but a large preserve for the mighty hunters of the Society of Jesus. "Above and before all other things," says this Instruction, "we ought to endeavor our own greatness, by the direction of our superiors, who are the only judges in this case, and who should labor that the Church of God may be in the highest degree of splendor, for the greater glory of God."6
In prosecution of this worthy end, the Secret Instructions enjoin the Fathers to visit frequently at rich and noble houses, and to "inform themselves, prudently and dexterously, whether they will not leave something to our Churches, in order to the obtaining remission of their sins, and of the sins of their kindred."7
Confessors — and only able and eloquent; men are to be appointed as confessors to princes and statesmen — are to ascertain the name and surname of their penitents, the names of their kindred and friends, whether they have hopes of succeeding to anything, and how they mean to dispose of what they already have, or may yet have; whether they have brothers, sisters, or heirs, and of what age, inclination, and education they are. And they "should persuade them that all these questions do tend much to the clearing of the state of their conscience."8
There is a refreshing plainness about the following Instructions. They are given with the air of men who had so often repeated their plea "for the greater glory of God," that they themselves had come at last to believe it: "Our provincial ought to send expert men into all those places where there is any considerable number of rich and wealthy persons, to the end they may give their superiors a true and faithful account." "Let the stewards of our college get an exact knowledge of the houses, gardens, quarries of stone, vineyards, manors, and other riches of every one who lives near the place where they reside, and if it be possible, what degree of affection they have for us." "In the next place we should discover every man’s office, and the revenue of it, their possessions, and the articles of their contracts, which they may surely do by confessions, by meetings, and by entertainments, or by our trusty friends. And generally when any confessor lights upon a wealthy person, from whom he hath good hopes of profit, he is obliged forthwith to give notice of it, and discover it at his return." "They should also inform themselves exactly whether there be any hope of obtaining bargains, goods, possessions, pious gifts, and the like, in exchange for the admission of their sons into our society."10
"If a wealthy family have daughters only, they are to be drawn by caresses to become nuns, fit which case a small portion of their estate may be assigned for their use, and the rest will be ours." "The last heir of a family is by all means to be induced to enter the society. And the better to relieve his mind from all fear of his parents, he is to be taught that it is more pleasing to God that he take this step without their knowledge or consent.11
"Such a one," the Instructions add, "ought to be sent to a distance to pass his novitiate." These directions were but too faithfully carried out in Spain, and to this among other causes is owing the depopulation of that once-powerful country. A writer who resided many years in the Peninsula, and had the best opportunities of observing its condition, says: "If a gentleman has two or three sons and as many daughters, the confessor of the family adviseth the father to keep the eldest son at home, and send the rest, both sons and daughters, into a convent or monastery; praising the monastic life, and saying that to be retired from the world is the safest way to heaven. The fathers of these families, glad of lessening the expenses of the house, and of seeing their children provided for, do send them into the desert place of a convent, which is really the middle of the world. Now observe that it is twenty to one that their heir dieth before he marrieth and have children, so the estate and everything else falls to the second, who is a professed friar, or nun, and as they cannot use the expression of meum or tuum, all goes that way to the society. And this is the reason why many families are extinguished, and their names quite out of memory, the convent so crowded, the kingdom so thin of people, and the friars, nuns, and monasteries so rich."12
Further, the Fathers are counseled to raise large sums of money on so that when the bond-holder comes to die, it will be easy to induce him to part with the bond in exchange for the salvation of his soul. At all events, he is more likely to make a gift of the deed than to bequeath the same amount in gold. Another advantage of borrowing in this fashion, is that their pretense of poverty may still be kept up. Owners of a fourth or of a half of the property of a county, they will still be "the poor companions of Jesus."13
We make but one other quotation from the Secret Instructions. It closes this series of pious advice and is, in one respect, the most characteristic of them all. "Let the superior keep these secret advices with great care, and let them not be communicated but to a very few discreet persons, and that only by parts; and let them instruct others with them, when they have profitably served the society. And then let them not communicate them as rules they have received, but as the effects of their own prudence. But if they should happen to fall into the hands of strangers, who should give them an ill sense or construction, let them be assured the society owns them not in that sense, which shall be confirmed by instancing. those of our order who assuredly know them not."14
It was some time before the contingency of exposure here provided against actually happened. But in the beginning of the seventeenth century the accidents of war dragged these Secret Instructions from the darkness in which their authors had hoped to conceal them from the knowledge of the world. The Duke of Brunswick, having plundered the Jesuits’ college at Paderborn in Westphalia, made a present of their library to the Capuchins of the same town. Among the books which had thus come into their possession was found a copy of the Secret Instructions. Another copy is said to have been discovered in the Jesuits’ college at Prague. Soon thereafter reprints and translations appeared in Germany, Holland, France, and England. The authenticity of the work was denied, as was to be expected; for any society that was astute enough to compile such a book would be astute enough to deny it. To only the fourth or highest order of Jesuits were these Instructions to be communicated; the others, who were ignorant of them in their written form, were brought forward to deny on oath that such a book existed, but their protestations weighed very little against the overwhelming evidence on the other side. The perfect uniformity of the methods followed by the Jesuits in all countries favored a presumption that they acted upon a prescribed rule; and the exact correspondence between their methods and the secret advices showed that this was the rule. Gretza, a well-known member of the society, affirmed that the Secreta Monita was a forgery by a Jesuit who had been dismissed with ignominy from the society in Poland, and that he published it in 1616. But the falsehood of the story was proved by the discovery in the British Museum of a work printed in 1596, twenty years before the alleged forgery, in which the Secreta Monita is copied.15
Since the first discovery in Paderborn, copies of the Secreta Monita have been found in other libraries, as in Prague, noted above. Numerous editions have since been published, and in so many languages, that the idea of collusion is out of the question. These editions all agree with the exception of a few unimportant variations in the reading.16
"These private directions," says M. l’Estrange, "are quite contrary to the rules, constitutions, and instructions which this society professeth publicly in those books it hath printed on this subject. So that without difficulty we may believe that the greatest part of their governors (if a very few be excepted especially) have a double rule as well as a double habit — one for their private and particular use, and another to flaunt with before the world."17
1 Secreta Monita, cap. 6, see. 6.
2 Ibid., cap. 6, sec. 8.
3 Secreta Monita, cap. 6., sec. 10.
4 Secreta Monita, cap. 7, sec. 23.
5 Secreta Monita, cap. 7, sec. 24.
6 Secreta Monita, cap. 9, sec. 1.
7 Ibid., sec. 4.
8 Ibid., sec. 5.
9 Contractus et possessiones" — leases and possessions. (Lat. et Ital. ed., Roma. Con approv.)
10 Secreta Morita, cap. 9, seca 7 — 10..11 Ostendendo etiam Deo sacrificium gratissimum fore si parentibus insciis et invitis aufugerit." (Lat. ed., cap. 9, sec. 8. L’Estrange’s tr., sec. 14.)
12 A Master Key to Popery, p. 70.
13 Secreta Monita, cap. 9, sec. 18, 19.
14 Ibid., cap. 16 (L’Estrange’s tr.); printed as the Preface in the Latin edition.
15 Secreta Monita; Lend., 1850. Pref. by H. M. W., p. 9.
16 Among the various editions of the Secreta Monita we mention the following: — Bishop Compton’s translation; Lond., 1669. Sir Roger L’Estrange’s translation; Lond., 1679; it was made from a French copy, printed at Cologne, 1678. Another edition, containing the Latin text with an English translation, dedicated to Sir Robert Walpole, Premier of England: Lond., 1723. This edition says, in the Preface, that Mr. John Schipper, bookseller at Amsterdam, bought a copy of the Secreta Monita, among other books, at Antwerp, and reprinted it. The Jesuits bought up the whole edition, a few copies excepted. From one of these it was afterwards reprinted. Of late years there have been several English reprints. One of the copies which we have used in this compend of the book was printed at Rome, in the printing press of the Propaganda, and contains the Latin text page for page with a translation in Italian.
17 The Cabinet of the Jesuits’ Secrets Opened; Lond., 1679.
8. Diffusion of the Jesuits throughout Christendom.
The Conflict Great — the Arms Sufficient — The Victory Sure — Set Free from Episcopal Jurisdiction — Acceptance in Italy — Venice — Spain — Portugal — Francis Xavier — France — Germany — Their First Planting in Austria — In Cologne and Ingolstadt — Thence Spread over all Germany — Their Schools — Wearing of Crosses — Revival of the Popish Faith.
THE soldiers of Loyola are about to go forth. Before beginning the campaign we see their chief assembling them and pointing out the field on which their prowess is to be displayed. The nations of Christendom are in revolt: it will be theirs to subjugate them, and lay them once more, bound in chains, at the feet of the Papal See. They must not faint; the arms he has provided them with are amply sufficient for the arduous warfare on which he sends them. Clad in that armor, and wielding it in the way he has shown them, they will expel knowledge as night chases away the day. Liberty will die wherever their foot shall tread. And in the ancient darkness they will be able to rear again the fallen throne of the great Hierarch of Rome. But if the service is hard, the wages will be ample. As the saviors of that throne they will be greater than it. And though meanwhile their work is to be done in great show of humility and poverty, the silver and the gold of Christendom will in the end be theirs; they will be the lords of its lands and palaces, the masters of the bodies and the souls of its inhabitants, and nothing of all that the heart can desire will be withholden from them if only they will obey him. The Jesuits rapidly multiplied, and we are now to follow them in their peregrinations over Europe. Going forth in little bands, animated with an entire devotion to their General, schooled in all the arts which could help to further their mission, they planted themselves in a few years in all the countries of Christendom, and made their presence felt in the turning of the tide of Protestantism, which till then had been on the flow.
There was no disguise they could not assume, and therefore there was no place into which they could not penetrate. They could enter unheard the closet of the monarch, or the cabinet of the statesman. They could sit unseen in Convocation or General Assembly, and mingle unsuspected in the deliberations and debates. There was no tongue they could not speak, and no creed they could not profess, and thus there was no people among whom they might not sojourn, and no Church whose membership they might not enter, and whose functions they might not discharge. They could execrate the Pope with the Lutheran, and swear the Solemn League with the Covenanter. They had their men of learning and eloquence for the halls of nobles and the courts of kings; their men of science and letters for the education of youth; their unpolished but ready orators to harangue the crowd; and their plain, unlettered monks, to visit the cottages of the peasantry and the workshops of the artisan.
"I know these men," said Joseph II of Austria, writing to Choiseul, the Prime Minister of Louis XV — "I know these men as well as any one can do: all the schemes they have carried on, and the pains they have taken to spread darkness over the earth, as well as their efforts to rule and embroil Europe from Cape Finisterre to Spitzbergen! In China they were mandarins; in France, academicians, courtiers, and confessors; in Spain and Portugal, grandees; and in Paraguay, kings. Had not my grand-uncle, Joseph I, become emperor, we had in all probability seen in Germany, too, a Malagrida or an Alvieros." In order that they might be at liberty to visit what city and diocese they pleased, they were exempted from episcopal jurisdiction. They could come and go at their pleasure, and perform all their functions without having to render account to any one save to their superior. This arrangement was resisted at first by certain prelates; but it was universally conceded at last, and it greatly facilitated the wide and rapid diffusion of the Jesuit corps. Extraordinary success attended their first efforts throughout all Italy. Designed for the common people, the order found equal acceptance from princes and nobles. In Parma the highest families submitted themselves to Extraordinary success attended their first efforts throughout all Italy. Designed for the common people, the order found equal acceptance from princes and nobles. In Parma the highest families submitted themselves to the "Spiritual Exercises."
In Venice, Lainez expounded the Gospel of St. John to a congregation of nobles; and in 1542 a Jesuits’ college was founded in that city. The citizens of Montepulciano accompanied Francisco Strada through the streets begging. Their chief knocked at the doors, and his followers received the alms. In Faenza, they succeeded in arresting the Protestant movement, which had been commenced by the eloquent Bernardino Ochino, and by the machinery of schools and societies for the relief of the poor, they brought back the population to the Papacy. These are but a few instances out of many of their popularity and success.1
In the countries of Spain and Portugal their success was even greater than in Italy. A son of the soil, its founder had breathed a spirit into the order which spread among the Spaniards like an infection. Some of the highest grandees enrolled themselves in its ranks. In the province of Valencia, the multitudes that flocked to hear the Jesuit preacher, Araoz, were such that no cathedral could contain them, and a pulpit was erected for him in the open air. From the city of Salamanca, where in 1548 they had opened their establishment in a small, wretched house, the Jesuits spread themselves over all Spain. Two members of the society were sent to the King of Portugal, at his own request: the one he retained as his confessor, the other he dispatched to the East Indies. This was that Francis Xavier who there gained for himself, says Ranke, "the name of an apostle, and the glory of a saint." At the courts of Madrid and Lisbon they soon acquired immense influence. They were the confessors of the nobles and the counselors of the monarch. The Jesuits found it more difficult to force their way into France. Much they wished to found a college in that city where their first vow had been recorded, but every attempt was met by the determined opposition of the Parliament and the clergy, who were jealous of their enormous privileges. The wars between the Guises and the Huguenots at length opened a door for them. Lainez, who by this time had become their General, saw his opportunity, and in 1561 succeeded in effecting his object, although on condition of renouncing the peculiar privileges of the order, and submitting to episcopal jurisdiction. "The promise was made, but with a mental reservation, which removed the necessity of keeping it."2
They immediately founded a college in Paris, opened schools — which were taught by clever teachers — and planted Jesuit seminaries at Avignon, Rhodes, Lyons, and other places. Their intrigues kept the nation divided, and much inflamed the fury of the civil wars. Henry III was massacred by an agent of theirs: they next attempted the life of Henry IV.
This crime led to their first banishment from France, in 1594; but soon they crept back into the kingdom in the guise of traders and operatives. They were at last openly admitted by the monarch — a service which they repaid by slaughtering him in the streets of his capital. Under their rule France continued to bleed and agonize, to plunge from woe into crime, and from crime into woe, till the crowning wickedness of the revocation of the Edict of Nantes laid the country prostrate; and it lay.
9. Commercial Enterprises and Banishment.
England — Poland — Cardinal Hosius — Sigismund III — Ruin of Poland — Jesuit Missions in the East Indies — Numbers of their Converts — Their Missions in Abyssinia — Their Kingdom of Paraguay — Their Trading Establishments in the West Indies — Episode of Father la Valette — Bankruptcy — Trial — Their Constitutions brought to Light — Banished from all Popish Kingdoms — Suppressed by Clement XIV — The Pope Dies Suddenly — The Order Restored by Plus VII — The Jesuits the Masters of the Pope.
OF the entrance of the Jesuits into England, the arts they employed, the disguises they wore, the seditions they sowed, the snares they laid for the life of the sovereign, and the plots they concocted for the overthrow of the Protestant Church, we shall have an opportunity of speaking when we come to narrate the history of Protestantism in Great Britain. Meanwhile, we consider their career in Poland. Cardinal Hosius opened the gates of this country to the Jesuits. Till then Poland was a flourishing country, united at home and powerful abroad. Its literature and science during the half-century preceding had risen to an eminence that placed Poland on a par with the most enlightened countries of Christendom. It enjoyed a measure of toleration which was then unknown to most of the nations of Europe. Foreign Protestants fled to it as a refuge from the persecution to which they were exposed in their native land, bringing to their adopted country their skill, their wealth, and their energy. Its trade increased, and its towns grew in population and riches. Italian, German, French, and Scottish Protestant congregations existed at Cracow, Vilna, and Posnania.1
Such was Poland before the foot of Jesuit had touched its soil. But from the hour that the disciples of Loyola entered the country Poland began to decline. The Jesuits became supreme at court; the monarch Sigismund III, gave himself entirely up to their guidance; no one could hope to rise in the State who did not pay court to them; the education of youth was wholly in their hands, and the effects became speedily visible in the decay of literature, and the growing decrepitude of the national mind. At home the popular liberties were attacked, and abroad the nation was humiliated by a foreign policy inspired by the Jesuits, which drew upon the country the contempt and hostility of neighboring powers. These evil courses of intrigue and faction within the country, and impotent and arrogant policy outside of it, were persisted in till the natural issue was reached in the partition of Poland. It is at the door of the Jesuits that the fall of that once-enlightened, prosperous, and powerful nation is to be laid. It concerns us less to follow the Jesuits into those countries which lie beyond the boundaries of Christendom, unless in so far as their doings in these regions may help to throw light on their principles and tactics. In following their steps among heathen nations and savage races, it is alike impossible to withhold our admiration of their burning zeal and intrepid courage, or our wonder at their prodigiously rapid success. No sooner had the Jesuit missionary set foot on a new shore, or preached, by an interpreter it might be, his first sermon in a heathen city, than his converts were to be counted in tens of thousands. Speaking of their missions in India, Sacchinus, their historian, says that "ten thousand men were baptized in the space of one year."3
When the Jesuit mission to the East Indies was set on foot in 1559, Torrez procured royal letters to the Portuguese viceroys and governors, empowering them to lend their assistance to the missionaries for the conversion of the Indians. This shortened the process wonderfully. All that had to be done was to ascertain the place where the natives were assembled for some religious festival, and surround them with a troop of soldiers, who, with leveled muskets, offered them the alternative of baptism. The rite followed immediately upon the acceptance of the alternative; and next day the baptized were taught the sign of the cross. In this excellent and summary way was the evangelization of the island of Goa effected.4
By similar methods did they attempt to plant the Popish faith and establish their own dominion in Abyssinia, and also at Mozambique (1560) on the opposite coast of Africa. One of the pioneers, Oviedo, who had entered Ethiopia, wrote thus to the Pope: "He must be permitted to inform his Holiness that,. with the assistance of 500 or 600 Portuguese soldiers, he could at any time reduce the Empire of Abyssinia to the obedience of the Pontificate; and when he considered that it was a country surrounded with territories abounding with the finest gold, and promising a rich harvest of souls to the Church, he trusted his Holiness would give the matter further consideration."5
The Emperor of Ethiopia was gained by flatteries and miracles; a terrible persecution was raised against the native Christians; thousands were massacred; but at last, the king having detected\ the authors of these barbarities plotting against his own life and throne, they were ignominiously expelled the country. Having secured the territory of Paraguay, a Portuguese possession in South America, the Jesuits founded a kingdom there, and became its sovereigns. They treated the natives at first with kindness, and taught them several useful arts, but by-and-by they changed their policy, and, reducing them to slavery, compelled them to labor for their benefit. Dealing out to the Paraguayan peasant from the produce of his own toil as much as would suffice to feed and clothe him, the Fathers laid up the rest in large storehouses, which they had erected for the purpose. They kept carefully concealed from the knowledge of Europe this seemingly exhaustless source of wealth, that no one else might share its sweets. They continued all the while to draw from it those vast sums wherewith they carried on their machinations in the Old World. With the gold wrung from the Paraguayan peasants’ toil they hired spies, bribed courtiers, opened new missions, and maintained that pomp and splendor of their establishments by which the populace were dazzled.6
Their establishments in Brazil formed the basis of a great and enriching trade, of which Santa Fe and Buenos Ayres were the chief depots. But the most noted episode of this kind in their history is that of Father Lavalette (1756). He was Visitor-General and Apostolic Prefect of their Missions in the West Indies. "He organized offices in St. Domingo, Granada, St. Lucia, St. Vincent, and other islands, and drew bills of exchange on Paris, London, Bordeaux, Nantes, Lyons, Cadiz, Leghorn, and Amsterdam." His vessels, loaded with riches, comprising, besides colonial produce, Negro slaves, "crossed the sea continually."7
Trading on credit, they professed to give the property of the society as security. Their methods of business were abnormal. Treaties obeyed by other merchants they disregarded. Neutrality laws were nothing to them. They hired ships which were used as traders or privateers, as suited them, and sailed under whatever flag was convenient. At last, however, came trouble to these Fathers, who were making, as the phrase is, "the best of both worlds." The Brothers Lioncy and Gouffre, of Marseilles, had accepted their bills for a million and a half of livres, to cover which two vessels had been dispatched for Martinique with merchandise to the value of two millions, unfortunately for the Fathers, the ships were captured at sea by the English. The house of Lioncy and Gouffre asked the superior of the Jesuits in Marseilles for four thousand livres, as part payment of their debt, to save them from bankruptcy. The Father replied that the society was not answerable, but he offered the Brothers Lioncy and Gouffre the aid of their prayers, fortified by the masses which they were about to say for them.
The masses would not fill the coffers which the Jesuits had emptied, and accordingly the merchants appealed to Parliament craving a decree for payment of the debt. The appeal was allowed, and the Jesuits were condemned to honor the bills drawn by their agent. At this critical moment the General of the society died: delay was inevitable: the new General sent all the funds he could raise; but before these supplies could reach Marseilles, Lioncy and Gouffre had become bankrupt, involving in their misfortune their connections in all parts of France. Now that the ruin had come and publicity was inevitable, the Jesuits refused to pay the debt, pleading that. they were protected from the claims of their creditors by their Constitutions. The cause now came to a public hearing.
After several pleas had been advanced and abandoned, the Jesuits took their final stand on the argument which, in an evil hour for themselves, they had put forth at first in their defense. Their rules, they said, forbade them to trade; and the fault of individual members could not be punished upon the Order: they were shielded by their Constitutions. The Parliament ordered these documents to be produced. They had been kept secret till now. They were laid before Parliament on the 16th of April, 1761. The result was disastrous for the Jesuits. They lost their cause, and became much more odious than before. The disclosure revealed Jesuitism to men as an organization based on the most iniquitous maxims, and armed with the most terrible weapons for the accomplishment of their object, which was to plant their own supremacy on the ruin of society. The Constitutions were one of the principal grounds of the decree for the extinction of the order in France, in 1762. 8
That political kingdoms and civil communities should feel the Order a burden too heavy to be borne, is not to be wondered at when we reflect that even the Popes, of whose throne it was the pillar, have repeatedly decreed its extinction. Strange as it may seem, the first bolt in later times that fell on the Jesuits was launched by the hand of Rome. Benedict IV, by a bull issued in 1741, prohibited them from engaging in trade and making slaves of the Indians. In 1759, Portugal, finding itself on the brink of ruin by their intrigues, shook them off. This example was soon followed in France, as we have already narrated. Even in Spain, with all its devotion to the Papal See, all the Jesuit establishments were surrounded, one night in 1767, with troops, and the whole fraternity, amounting to 7,000, were caught and shipped off to Italy. Immediately thereafter a similar expulsion befell them in South America. Naples, Malta, and Parma were the next to drive them from their soil. The severest blow was yet to come.
Clement XIII, hitherto their firm friend, yielding at last to the unanimous demands of all the Roman Catholic courts, summoned a secret conclave for the suppression of the Order: "a step necessary," said the brief of his successor, "in order to prevent Christians rising one against another, and massacring one another in the very bosom of our common mother the Holy Church." Clement died suddenly the very evening before the day appointed for the conclave. Lorenzo Ganganelli was elevated to the vacant chair under the title of Clement XIV. Ganganelli was studious, learned, of pure morals, and of genuine piety. From the schoolmen he turned to the Fathers, forsaking the Fathers he gave himself to the study of the Holy Scriptures, where he learned on what Rock to fix the anchor of his faith. Clement XIV strove for several years, with honest but mistaken zeal, to reform the Order.
His efforts were fruitless. On the 21st of July, 1773, he issued the famous bull, "Dominus ac Redemptor noster," By which he "dissolved and for ever annihilated the Order as a corporate body," at a moment when it counted 22,000 members.9
The bull justifies itself by a long and formidable list of charges against the Jesuits. Had this accusation proceeded from a non-Catholic pen it might have been regarded as not free from exaggeration, but coming from the Papal chair it must be accepted as the sober truth. The bull of Clement charged them with raising various insurrections and rebellions, with plotting against bishops, undermining the regular monastic orders, and invading pious foundations and corporations of every sort, not only in Europe, but in Asia and America, to the danger of souls and the astonishment of all nations. It charged them with engaging in trade, and that, instead of seeking to convert the heathen, they had shown themselves intent only on gathering gold and silver and precious jewels. They had interpolated pagan rites and manners with Christian beliefs and worship: they had set aside the ordinances of the Church, and substituted opinions which the apostolic chair had pronounced fundamentally erroneous and evidently subversive of good morals. Tumults, disturbances, violences, had followed them in all countries.
In fine, they had broken the peace of the Church, and so incurably that the Pontificates of his predecessors, Urban VIII, Clements IX, X, XI, and XII, Alexanders VII and VIII, Innocents X, XI, XII, and XIII, and Benedict XIV, had been passed in abortive attempts to re-establish the harmony and concord which they had destroyed. It was now seen that the peace of the Church would never be restored while the Order existed, and hence the necessity of the bull which dispossessed the Jesuits of "every office, service, and administration;" took away from them "their houses, schools, hospitals, estates; " withdrew "all their statutes, usuages, decrees, customs, and ordinances;" and pronounced "all the power of the General, Provincial, Visitors, and every other head of the same Order, whether spiritual or secular, to be for ever annulled and suppressed." "The present ordinance," said the bull, in conclusion, "shall remain in full force and operation from henceforth and for ever."
Nothing but the most tremendous necessity could have made Clement XIV issue this bull. He knew well how unforgiving was the pride and how deadly the vengeance of the Society, and he did not conceal from himself the penalty he should have to pay for decreeing its suppression. On laying down his pen, after having put his name to the bull, he said to those around him that he had subscribed his death-warrant.10
The Pope was at that time in robust health, and his vigorous constitution and temperate habits promised a long life. But now dark rumors began to be whispered in Italy that the Pontiff would die soon. In April of the following year he began to decline without any apparent cause: his illness increased: no medicine was of any avail: and after lingering in torture for months, he died, September 22nd, 1774.
"Several days before his death," says Caraccioli, "his bones were exfoliated and withered like a tree which, attacked at its roots, withers away and throws off its bark. The scientific men who were called in to embalm his body found the features livid, the lips black, the abdomen inflated, the limbs emaciated, and covered with violet spots. The size of the head was diminished, and all the muscles were shrunk up, and the spine was decomposed. They filled the body with perfumed and aromatic substances, but nothing could dispel the mephitic effluvia."11
The suppression with which Clement XIV smote the Society of Jesus was eternal; but the "forever" of the bull lasted only in actual deed during the brief interval that elapsed between 1773 and 1814. That short period was filled up with the awful tempest of the French Revolution — to the fallen thrones and desecrated altars of which the Jesuits pointed as the monuments of the Divine anger at the suppression of their Order. Despite the bull of Clement, the Jesuits had neither ceased to exist nor ceased to act. Amid the storms that shook the world they were energetically active. In revolutionary conventions and clubs, in war-councils and committees, on battle-fields they were present, guiding with unseen but powerful touch the course of affairs. Their maxim is, if despotisms will not serve them, to demoralize society and render government impossible, and from chaos to remodel the world anew.
Thus the Society of Jesus, which had gone out of existence before the Revolution, as men believed, started up in full force the moment after, prepared to enter on the work of moulding and ruling the nations which had been chastised but not enlightened. Scarcely had Pius VII returned to the Vatican, when, by a bull dated August 7th, 1814, he restored the Order of Jesus. Thaddeus Borzodzowsky was placed at their head. Once more the brotherhood stalked abroad in their black birettas. In no long time their colleges, seminaries, and novitiates began to flourish in all the countries of Europe, Ireland and England not excepted. Their numbers, swelled by the sodalities of "St. Vincent de Paul," "Brothers of the Christian Doctrine," and other societies affiliated with the order, became greater, perhaps, than they ever were at any former period. And their importance was vastly enhanced by the fact that the contest between the "Order" and the "Papal Chair" ended — temporarily, at any rate — in the enslavement of the Popedom, of which they inspired the policy, indited the decrees, and wielded the power.
1 Krasinski, Rise, Progress, and Decline of the Reformation in Poland, volume 2, p. 196; Lond., 1840.
2 Krasinski, vol. 2., pp. 197, 198.
3 Sacchinus, lib. 6., p. 172.
4 Steinmetz, Hist. of the Jesuits, vol. 2, pp. 46 — 48. Sacchinus, lib. 3, p.129.
5 Steinmetz, lib. 2., p. 59.
6 Duller, Hist. of the Jesuits, pp. 135-138..7 A Glimpse of the Great Secret Society, p. 79; ed. Lond., 1872.
8 A Glimpse of the Great Secret Society, pp. 78 — 81. Chalotais, Report to Parl. of Bretagne.
9 Duller, Hist. of the Jesuits, p. 151.
10 "Sotto-scriviamo la nostra morte."
11 All the world believed that Clement had been made to drink the Aqua Tofana, a spring in Perugia more famous than healthful. Some one has said that if Popes are not liable to err, they are nevertheless liable to sudden death.
10. Restoration of the Inquisition.
Failure of Ratisbon Conference — What Next to be Done? — Restore the Inquisition — Paul III — Caraffa — His History — Spread of Protestantism in Italy — Juan di Valdez — His Reunions at Chiaja — Peter Martyr Vermigli — Bernardino Ochino — Galeazzo CaraccioliVittoria Colonna, etc. — Pietro Carnesecchi, etc. — Shall Naples or Geneva Lead in the Reform Movement?
THERE is one arm of the Jesuits to which we have not yet adverted. The weapon that we refer to was not indeed unknown to former times, but it had fallen out of order, and had to be refurbished, and made fit for modern exigencies. No small part of the success that attended the operations of the Jesuits was owing to their use of it. That weapon was the Inquisition. We have narrated in a former chapter the earnest attempt made at the Conference of Ratisbon to find a basis of conciliation between the Protestant and the Popish churches. The way had been paved at Rome for this attempted reconcilement of the two creeds by an infusion of new blood into the College of Cardinals. Gaspar Contarini, a senator of Venice, who was known to hold opinions on the doctrine of justification differing very little, if at all, from those of Luther,1 was invested with the purple of the cardinalate. The chair of the Doge almost within his reach, Contarini was induced to come to Rome and devote the influence of his high character and great talents to the doubtful experiment of reforming the Papacy. By his advice, several ecclesiastics whose sentiments approximated to his own were added to the Sacred College, among other Sadoleto, Gioberto Caraffa, and Reginald Pole. In the end, these new elections but laid a basis for a more determined and bloody resistance to Protestantism.
This was in the future as yet; meanwhile the reforming measures, for which this change in the cardinalate was to pave the way, were taken. Deputies were sent to the Ratisbon Conference, with instructions to make such concessions to the Reformers as might not endanger the fundamental principles of the Papacy, or strip the tiara of its supremacy. The issue was what we have announced in a previous part of our history. When the deputies returned from the Diet, and told Paul III that all their efforts to frame a basis of agreement between the two faiths had proved abortive, and that there was not a country in Christendom where Protestantism was not spreading, the Pope asked in alarm, "What then is to be done?"
Cardinal Caraffa, and John Alvarez de Toledo, Bishop of Burgos, to whom the question was addressed, immediately made answer, Re-establish the Inquisition. The proposal accorded well with the gloomy genius, unbending opinions, and stern bigotry of the men from whom it came. Caraffa and Toledo were old Dominicans, the same order to whom Innocent III had committed the working of the "Holy Tribunal," when it was first set up. Men of pure but austere life, they were prepared to endure in their own persons, or to inflict on the persons of others, any amount of suffering and pain, rather than permit the Roman Church to be overthrown. Re-establish the Inquisition, said Caraffa; let the supreme tribunal be set up in Rome, with subordinate branches ramifying over all Europe. "Here in Rome must the successors of Peter destroy all the heresies of the whole world."2
The Jesuit historians take care to tell us that Caraffa’s proposal was seconded by a special memorial from the founder of their order, Ignatius Loyola. The bull re-establishing the Inquisition was published July 21st, 1542.
The "Holy Office" revived with terrors unknown to it in former ages. It had now a plenitude of power. Its jurisdiction extended over all countries, and not a man in all Christendom, however exalted in rank or dignity, but was liable to be made answerable at its bar. The throne was no protection; the altar was no shield; withered age and blooming youth, matron and maiden, might any hour be seized by its familiars, and undergo the question in the dark underground chamber, where, behind a table, with its crucifix and taper, sat the inquisitor, his stern pitiless features surmounted by his black cowl, and all around the instruments of torture. Till the most secret thought had been wrung out of the breast, no mercy was to be shown. For the inquisitor to feel the least pity for his writhing victim was to debase himself. Such were the instructions drafted by Caraffa.
The history of the man who restored the Inquisition is one of great interest, and more than ordinary instruction, but it is touchingly sad. Caraffa had been a member of the Oratory of Divine Love, which was a little circle of moderate Reformers, that held its sitting in the Trastevere at Rome, and occupied, as regarded the Reform of the Roman Church, a position midway between the champions of things as they were, and the company of decided adherents of the Gospel, which held its reunions at Chiaja, in Naples, and of which we shall speak below. Caraffa had "tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come," but the gracious stirrings of the Spirit, and the struggles of his own conscience, he had quelled, and from the very threshold of Rest which he was seeking in the Gospel, he had cast himself again into the arms of an infallible Church. With such a history it was not possible that Caraffa could act a middle part. He threw himself with sterner zeal into the dreadful work of reviving the Inquisition than did even Paul III, under whom he served, and whom he was destined to succeed.
"Caraffa," says the historian Ranke, "lost not a moment in carrying its edict into execution; he would have thought it waste of time to wait for the usual issue of means from the apostolic treasury, and, though by no means rich, he hired a house for immediate proceedings at his own expense; this he fitted up with rooms for the officers, and prisons for the accused, supplying the latter with strong bolts and locks, with dungeons, chains, blocks, and every other fearful appurtenance of his office. He appointed commissioners-general for the different countries."3
The resolution to restore the Inquisition was taken at a critical moment for Italy, and all the countries south of the Alps. From the city of Ferrara in the north, where the daughter of Louis XII, the correspondent of Calvin, sheltered in her palace the disciples of the Gospel, to the ancient Parthenope, which looks down from its fig and aloe covered heights upon the calm waters of its bay, the light was breaking in a clearness and fullness that gave promise that in proportion to the depth of the previous darkness, so would be the splendors of the coming day.
At the foot of Fiesole, and in that Florence on which Cosine and the brilliant group of scholars around him had so often looked down, while they talked of Plato, there were men who had learned a better knowledge than that which the Greek sage had taught. In Padua, in Bologna, in Lucca, in Modena, in Rome,4 and in other cities of classic fame, some of the first families had embraced the Gospel.
11. The Tortures oft the Inquisition.
A Stunning Blow — Three Classes in Italy — Flight of Peter Martyr Vermigli — of Ochino — Caraffa made Pope — The Martyrs, Mollio and Tisserano — Italian Protestantism Crushed — A Notable Epoch — Three Movements — The Inquisition at Nuremberg — The Torture-Chamber — Its Furnishings — Max Tower — The Chamber of Question — The various Instruments of Torture — The Subterranean Dungeons — The Iron Virgin — Her Office — The Burial of the Dead.
THE re-establishment of the Inquisition decided the question of the Reformation of Italy. The country, struck with this blow as it was lifting itself up, instantly fell back into the old gulf. It had become suddenly apparent that religious reform must be won with a great fight of suffering, and Italy had not strength to press on through chains, and dungeons, and scaffolds to the goal she wished to reach. The prize was glorious, she saw, but the price was great. Pallavicino has confessed that it was the Inquisition that saved Italy from lapsing into Protestantism.1
The religious question had divided the Italians of that day into three classes. The bulk of the nation had not thought on the question at all, and harbored no purpose of leaving the Church of Rome. To them the restoration of the Inquisition had no terrors. There was another and large class who had abandoned Rome, but who had not clearness to advance to the open profession of Protestantism. They were most to be pitied of all should they fall into the hands of the inquisitors, seeing they were too undecided either to decline or to face the horrors of the Holy Office. The third class were in no doubt as to the course they must pursue. They could not return to a Church which they held to be superstitious, and they had no alternative before them but provide for their safety by flight, or await death amid the fires of the Inquisition. The consternation was great; for the Protestants had not dreamed of their enemies having recourse to such violent measures. Numbers fled, and these fugitives were to be found in every city of Switzerland and Germany.2
Among these was Bernardino Ochino, on whose eloquent orations all ranks of his countrymen had been hanging but a few months before, and in whose audience the emperor himself might be seen when he visited Italy. Not, however, till he had been served with a citation from the Holy Office at Rome did Ochino make his escape. Flight was almost as bitter as death to the orator. He was leaving behind him the scene of those brilliant triumphs which he could not hope to renew on a foreign soil. Pausing on the summit of the Great St. Bernard, he devoted a few moments to those feelings of regret which were so natural on abandoning so much that he could not hope ever again to enjoy. He then went forward to Geneva. But, alas! the best days of the eloquent monk were past. At Geneva, Ochino’s views became tainted and obscured with the new philosophy, which was beginning to air itself at that young school of pantheism. Peter Martyr Vermigli soon followed. He was presiding over the convent of his order in Lucca, when the storm came with such sudden violence. He set his house in order and fled; but it was discovered after he was gone that the heresy remained although the heretic had escaped, his opinions having been embraced by many of the Luccese monks.
The same was found to be the case with the order to which Ochino belonged, the Capuchins namely, and the Pope at first meditated, as the only cure, the suppression of both orders. Peter Martyr went ultimately to Strasburg, and a place was found for him in its university, where his lamp continued to burn clearly to the close. Juan di Valdez died before the tempest burst, which drove beyond the Alps so many of the distinguished group that had formed itself around him at Pausilippo, and saw not the evil days which came on his adopted country. But the majority of those who had embraced the Protestant faith were unable to escape. They were immured in the prisons of the various Holy Offices throughout Italy; some were kept in dark cells for years, in the hope that they would recant, others were quickly relieved by martyrdom. The restorer of the Inquisition, the once reforming Caraffa, mounted the Papal chair, under the name of Paul IV. The rigors of the Holy Office were not likely to be relaxed under the new Pope; but twenty years were needed to enable the torture and the stake to annihilate the Protestants of Italy.3.
Peter Martyr Vermigli Italian victim of the Inquisition. Of those who suffered martyrdom we shall mention only two — Mollio, a Bolognese professor, renowned throughout Italy for his learning and his pure life; and Tisserano, a native of Perugia. On the 15th of September, 1553, an assembly of the Inquisition, consisting of six cardinals with their episcopal assessors, was held with great pomp at Rome. A train of prisoners, with burning tapers in their hands, was led in before the tribunal. All of them recanted save Mollio and Tisserano. On leave being given them to speak, Mollio broke out, says Mc Crie, "in a strain of bold and fervid invective, which chained them to their seats, at the same time that it cut them to the quick."
He rebuked his judges for their lewdness, their avarice, and their blood-thirsty cruelty, and concluded as follows: — "‘Wherefore I appeal from your sentence, and summon you, cruel tyrants and murderers, to answer before the judgment-seat of Christ at the last day, where your pompous titles and gorgeous trappings will not dazzle, nor your guards and torturing apparatus terrify us. And in testimony of this, take back that which you have given me.’ In saying this, he threw the flaming torch which he held in his hand on the ground, and extinguished it. Galled, and gnashing upon him with their teeth, like the persecutors of the first Christian martyrs, the cardinals ordered Mollio, together with his companion, who approved of the testimony he had borne, to instant execution. They were conveyed, accordingly, to the Campo del Flor, where they died with the most pious fortitude."4
Mollio throwing down his torch before the Inquisition The eight years that elapsed between 1534 and 1542 are notable ones in the annals of Protestant Christianity. That epoch witnessed the birth of three movements, Which were destined to stamp a character upon the future of Europe, and powerfully to modify the conflict then in progress in Christendom. In 1534 the Jesuits recorded their first vow in the Church of Mont-Martre, in Paris. In 1540 their society was regularly launched by the Papal edict. In 1542, Paul III issued the bull for the re-establishment of the Inquisition.
The meeting of these dates — the contemporaneous rise of these three instrumentalities, is sufficiently striking, and is one of the many proofs which we meet in history that there is an Eye watching all that is done on earth, and that never does an agency start up to destroy the world, but there is set over against it a yet more powerful agency to convert the evil it would inflict into good. Jesuitism, the consummation of error — the Inquisition, the maximum of force, stand up and array themselves against the "heretics."
This is the struggle with the record of which we shall presently be occupied. Meanwhile we proceed to describe one of those few Inquisitions that remain to this day in almost the identical state in which they existed when the Holy Office was being vigorously worked. This will enable us to realize more vividly the terror of that weapon which Paul III prepared for the hands of the Jesuits, and the Divine power of that faith which enabled the confessors of the Gospel to withstand and triumph over it. Turn we now to the town of Nuremberg, in Bavaria. The zeal with which Duke Albert, the sovereign of Bavaria, entered into the restoration of Roman Catholicism, we have already narrated. To further the movement, he provided every one of the chief towns of his dominions with a Holy Office, and the Inquisition of Nuremberg still remains — an anomalous and horrible monument in the midst of a city where the memorials of an exquisite art, and the creations of an unrivalled genius, meet one at every step. We shall first describe the Chamber of Torture.5
The house so called immediately adjoins the Imperial Castle, which from its lofty site looks down on the city, whose Gothic towers, sculptured fronts, and curiously ornamented gables are seen covering both banks of the Pegnitz, which rolls below. The house may have been the guard-room of the castle. It derives its name, the Torture-chamber, not from the fact that the torture was here inflicted, but because into this one chamber has been collected a complete set of the instruments of torture gleaned from the various Inquisitions that formerly existed in Bavaria. A glance suffices to show the whole dreadful apparatus by which the adherents of Rome sought to maintain her dogmas. Placed next to the door, and greeting the sight as one enters, is a collection of hideous masks. These represent creatures monstrous of shape, and malignant and fiendish of nature, It is in beholding them that we begin to perceive how subtle was the genius that devised this system of coercion, and that it took the mind as well as the body of the victim into account. In gazing on them, one feels as if he had suddenly come into polluting and debasing society, and had sunk to the same moral level with the creatures here figured before him. He suffers a conscious abatement of dignity and fortitude.
The persecutor had calculated, doubtless, that the effect produced upon the mind of his victim by these dreaded apparitions, would be that he would become morally relaxed, and less able to sustain his cause. Unless of strong mind, indeed, the unfortunate prisoner, on entering such a place, and seeing himself encompassed with such unearthly and hideous shapes, must have felt as if he were the vile heretic which the persecutor styled him, and as if already the infernal den had opened its portals, and sent forth its venomous swarms to bid him welcome. Yourself accursed, with accursed beings are you henceforth to dwell — such was the silent language of these abhorred images. We pass on into the chamber, where more dreadful sights meet our gaze. It is hung round and round with instruments of torture, so numerous that it would take a long while even to name them, and so diverse that it would take a much longer time to describe them. We must take them in groups, for it were hopeless to think of going over them one by one, and particularising the mode in which each operated, and the ingenuity and art with which all of them have been adapted to their horrible end.
There were instruments for compressing the fingers till the bones should be squeezed to splinters. There were instruments for probing below the finger-nails till an exquisite pain, like a burning fire, would run along the nerves. There were instruments for tearing out the tongue, for scooping out the eyes, for grubbing-up the ears. There were bunches of iron cords, with a spiked circle at the end of every whip, for tearing the flesh from the back till bone and sinew were laid bare. There were iron cases for the legs, which were tightened upon the limb placed in them by means of a screw, till flesh and bone were reduced to a jelly. There were cradles set full of sharp spikes, in which victims were laid and rolled from side to side, the wretched occupant being pierced at each movement of the machine with innumerable sharp points. There were iron ladles with long handles, for holding molten lead or boiling pitch, to be poured down the throat of the victim, and convert his body into a burning cauldron. There were frames with holes to admit the hands and feet, so contrived that the person put into them had his body bent into unnatural and painful positions, and the agony grew greater and greater by moments, and yet the man did not die. There were chestfuls of small but most ingeniously constructed instruments for pinching, probing, or tearing the more sensitive parts of the body, and continuing the pain up to the very verge where reason or life gives way. On the floor and walls of the apartment were other and larger instruments for the same fearful end — lacerating, mangling, and agonizing living men; but these we shall meet in other dungeons we are yet to visit.
Descriptions of the Jesuits:
"My history of the Jesuits is not eloquently written, but it is supported by unquestionable authorities, is very particular and very horrible. Their restoration [i.e., the Jesuits’ reinstatement as an official order by Pope Pius VII in 1814] is indeed a step toward darkness, cruelty, perfidy, despotism, death… I do not like the appearance of the Jesuits. If ever there was a body of men who merited eternal damnation on earth and in hell, it is this Society of Loyola’s [i.e., the Jesuits, the "Company"]." John Adams (1735-1826; 2nd President of the United States; Quote taken from a letter in 1816 to Thomas Jefferson)
"The organization of the [Roman Catholic] Hierarchy is a complete military despotism, of which the Pope is the ostensible [i.e., apparent; seeming] head; but of which, the Black Pope [Ed. Note: The Superior General of the Jesuits], is the real head. The Black Pope is the head of the order of the Jesuits, and is called a General [i.e., the Superior General]. He not only has command of his own order, but directs and controls the general policy of the [Roman Catholic] Church. He [the Black Pope] is the power behind the throne, and is the real potential head of the Hierarchy. The whole machine is under the strictest rules of military discipline. The whole thought and will of this machine, to plan, propose and execute, is found in its head. There is no independence of thought, or of action, in its subordinate parts. Implicit and unquestioning obedience to the orders of superiors in authority, is the sworn duty of the priesthood of every grade…" Thomas M. Harris (U.S. Army Brigadier General; Author of the book Rome’s Responsibility for the Assassination of Abraham Lincoln)
"The Jesuits are a military organization, not a religious order. Their chief is a general of an army, not the mere father abbot of a monastery. And the aim of this organization is power – power in its most despotic exercise – absolute power, universal power, power to control the world by the volition of a single man [i.e., the Black Pope, the Superior General of the Jesuits]. Jesuitism is the most absolute of despotisms: and at the same time the greatest and most enormous of abuses… The [Superior] General of the Jesuits insists on being master, sovereign, over the sovereign. Wherever the Jesuits are admitted they will be masters, cost what it may… Every act, every crime, however atrocious, is a meritorious work, if committed for the interest of the Society of the Jesuits, or by the order of the [Superior] General." Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821; Napoleon I, emperor of the French)
"The Jesuits…are simply the Romish army for the earthly sovereignty of the world in the future, with the Pontiff of Rome for emperor…that’s their ideal… It is simple lust of power, of filthy earthly gain, of domination – something like a universal serfdom with them [i.e., the Jesuits] as masters – that’s all they stand for. They don’t even believe in God perhaps." (1880) Fyodor Dostoyevsky (1821-1881; Russian novelist)
"…This ‘Directorium Inquisitorum’ was dedicated to Gregory XIII, the pope who bestowed upon Jesuits the right to deal in commerce and banking, and who also decreed that every papal legate should have a Jesuit advisor on his personal staff." F. Tupper Saussy
"The [British] East India Company was a major subsidizer of the Jesuit mission to Beijing [China]. The Jesuits, in turn, interceded with oriental monarchs to secure lucrative commercial favors for the company, including monopolies on tea, spices, saltpeter (for explosives), silks, and the world’s opium trade. Indeed…the [East India] Company appears to owe its very existence to the Society of Jesus [i.e., the Jesuits]." F. Tupper Saussy
"…the order of the Jesuits was created – the most cruel, unscrupulous, and powerful of all the champions of popery… they knew no rule, no tie, but that of their order, and no duty but to extend its power… There was no crime too great for them to commit, no deception too base for them to practice, no disguise too difficult for them to assume. [Though] vowed to perpetual poverty and humility, it was their studied aim to secure wealth and power, to be devoted to the overthrow of Protestantism, and the re-establishment of the papal supremacy… "When appearing as members of their [Jesuit] order, they wore a garb of sanctity…but under this blameless exterior the most criminal and deadly purposes were often concealed. It was a fundamental principle of the order that ‘the end justifies the means’. By this code, lying, theft, perjury, [and] assassination, were not only pardonable but commendable, when they served the interests of the Church [Ed. Note: more specifically, the interests of the Superior General of the Jesuits]. Under various disguises the Jesuits worked their way into offices of State, climbing up to be the counselors of kings, and shaping the policy of nations. They became servants [in order] to act as spies upon their master… The Jesuits rapidly spread themselves over Europe, and wherever they went, there followed a revival of popery. To give them greater power, a bull was issued re-establishing the inquisition…and atrocities too terrible to bear the light of day were repeated in its secret dungeons." (1888) Ellen G. White (Author of the book The Great Controversy) [note: Liberty To The Captives does not endorse Ellen G. White or her doctrines.]
Warnings About the Jesuits:
"It is my opinion that if the liberties of this country – the United States of America – are destroyed, it will be by the subtlety of the Roman Catholic Jesuit priests, for they are the most crafty, dangerous enemies to civil and religious liberty. They have instigated most of the wars of Europe." Marquis de Lafayette (1757-1834; French statesman and general; served in the American Continental Army under General George Washington)
"[The Jesuits] are the deadly enemies of civil and religious liberty. Nothing that stands in their way can become so sacred as to escape their vengeance… Because of this, a sense of both duty and security demands that the history and character of this skilled and powerful adversary [i.e., the Jesuits] …should be understood; as also the causes which have led to the expulsion of the Jesuits from every country in Europe, the public odium which has rested upon them for many years, their long continued disturbance of the peace of nations, and the final suppression and abolition of their society by one of the best and most enlightened of the popes [i.e., Pope Clement XIV]." R.W. Thompson (Ex-Secretary, American Navy)
"This society of men [i.e., the Jesuits], after exerting their tyranny for upwards of two hundred years, at length became so formidable to the world, threatening the entire subversion of all social order, that even the Pope [Ed. Note: Pope Clement XIV]…was compelled to dissolve them. ((Ed. Note: The Jesuit Order was banned by Pope Clement XIV in his Papal ‘Bull of Suppression’ in 1773. He was assassinated by the Jesuits in 1774.))
They [i.e., the Jesuits] had not been suppressed, however, for fifty years, before the waning influence of Popery and Despotism required their useful labors to resist the light of Democratic liberty, and the Pope (Pius VII), simultaneously with the formation of the Holy Alliance, revived the order of the Jesuits in all their power… [The] Jesuits…are a secret society, a sort of Masonic order, with superadded features of revolting odiousness, and a thousand times more dangerous. They are not merely priests, or of one religious creed; they are merchants, and lawyers, and editors, and men of any profession, having no outward badge (in this country) by which to be recognized; they are about in all your society." Samuel Morse (1791-1872; American inventor of the telegraph)
"During the night preceding the day appointed for the public ceremony of announcing the abolition of the Jesuits, [Pope] Clement XIII was suddenly seized with convulsions, and died, leaving the act unperformed, and the Jesuits victorious. Cormenin…records this event in the terse and expressive words: ‘The Jesuits had poisoned him’." R.W. Thompson (Ex-Secretary, American Navy) ((Ed. Note: Clement XIII was assassinated (poisoned) in 1769 the day before he was to sign a Papal Bull suppressing the Jesuits.))
The above listed quotations tell quite a story. We find famous persons (former U.S. presidents, the inventor of the telegraph, an emperor, army generals, historians, a great Russian novelist, a pope, etc.) condemning the Jesuits, warning about the Jesuits, describing Jesuit assassinations, and even abolishing the Jesuits as a Catholic Order (i.e., Pope Clement XIV).
Why did at least 11 other popes try to "curb the excesses" of this Roman Catholic Order called the "Society of Jesus"? In 1769, one pope [Clement XIII] was getting ready to sign a Papal Bull suppressing the Jesuits when he was assassinated the day before the official signing was to occur. The next pope [Clement XIV] did suppress and abolish the Jesuits in 1773.
What could the Jesuits have done to cause them to be expelled from 83 (eighty-three) countries, city states, and cities – expulsions carried out mostly by Roman Catholic monarchs?
The order of Jesuits, of the Society of Jesus, one of the most celebrated of the Monastic orders of the Romish Church, was founded in the year 1530, by Ignatius Loyola. This remarkable person, at first a soldier, and afterwards a priest, combined in his character all the military courage, intrepidity and spirit of command of the former, with the craft and bigoted zeal of the latter. He proposed a plan of the constitution and laws of his new order, which he affirmed to have been suggested by the immediate inspiration of Heaven, and appealed to the Roman Pontiff, Paul III., for the sanction of his authority, to confirm the institution. Its avowed object was to extend the authority of the Pope, and the dominion of the Church of Rome throughout the world.
It was a fundamental maxim of the Jesuits, from their first institution, to conceal the rules of their order in impenetrable mystery. They never communicated them, even to the greater part of their own members; and refused to produce them when requested by Courts of Justice. During the persecutions, however, which have been carried on against them in Portugal and France, the Jesuits have produced the mysterious volumes of their institute, the Monita Secreta. These records enable us to investigate and delineate, with certainty and precision, the principles of their government, and the sources of their power.
The primary object of the society was to establish a universal, although secret, empire, over the entire globe, of which the General at Rome should be the sovereign. Kings themselves were to be its subjects, and savage, barbarous and civilized nations, alike, controlled by its subtle and omnipresent power. It sought to make the governments of all nations; and every class of society, and every individual member of society, high or low, subservient to its authority, and purposes; and all this wide spread machinery of government — this stupendous and fearful power, was to be employed to establish the Pope's authority, to bind the nations to the footstool of papal despotism. The members of the society, and their countless minions swarmed the world, insinuating themselves into every department of society, and secretly establishing their ascendancy over all classes of men.
The maxims of policy adopted by this order, were, like its constitution, remarkable for their union of laxity and rigor. They were in no degree shackled by prejudice, superstition or real religion. Expediency, in its most simple and licentious form, was the basis of their morals, and their principles and practices were uniformly accommodated to the circumstances in which they were placed. The paramount principle of the order, from which none of its members ever swerved, was simply this, that its interests were to be promoted by all possible means, at all possible expense. In order to acquire more easily an ascendancy over persons of rank and power, they propagated a system of the most relaxed morality, which accommodated itself to the passions of men, justified their vices, and authorized almost every action which the most audacious or crafty politician would wish to perpetrate. To persons of stricter principles they studied to recommend themselves by the purity of their lives, and sometimes by the austerity of their doctrines. While sufficiently compliant in the treatment of immoral practices, they were generally rigidly severe in exacting a strict orthodoxy in opinions.
"They are a sort of people," said the abbe Boileau, "who lengthen the creed and shorten the decalogue." They adopted the same spirit of accommodation in their missionary undertakings; and their christianity, chameleon-like. readily assumed the color of every religion where it happened to be introduced. They freely permitted their converts to retain a full proportion of the old superstitions, and suppressed, without hesitation, any point in the new faith which was likely to bear hard on their prejudice or propensities. They proceeded to still greater lengths; and besides suppressing the truths of revelation, devised the most absurd falsehoods, to be used for attracting disciples, or even to be taught as parts of Christianity. One of them in India produced a pedigree to prove his own descent from Brama; and another in America assured a native chief that Christ had been a valiant and victorious warrior, who in the space of three years had scalped an incredible number of men, women and children. It was, in fact, their own authority, not the authority of true religion, which they wished to establish; and Christianity was generally as little known, when they quitted the foreign scenes of their labors, as when they entered there.
So formidable did this ambitious and grasping society become, to the rights and safety of nations, that they were expelled from England in 1604; from Venice in 1606; from Portugal in 1759; and from Spain in 1767; the example of Spain was soon followed by Ferdinand VI. of Naples, and by the prince of Parma. Repudiated, by the kingdoms in which it had been fostered, and universally detested, this band of conspirators against the rights of man, was at last entirely suppressed by an order of Pope Clement XIV. in 1773.
In August, 1814, a bull was issued by Pope Pius VII., restoring this formidable order to all their former privileges, and calling upon all Catholic princes to afford them protection and encouragement. This act of their revival is expressed in all the solemnity of papal authority; and even affirmed to be above the recall or revision of any judge, with whatever power he may be clothed. The number of Jesuits at present in Europe and America, amounts to several thousand. Their general resides at Rome. In Italy, including Sicily, there are seven hundred, who possess eighteen colleges for the instruction of youth.
It is too obvious that the Jesuits have formed the magnificent scheme of presenting, as a splendid offering at the shrine of their pontifical master, our glorious country, redeemed from the savage by our protestant fathers, and bequeathed to their sons with the precious legacy of civil and religious freedom, and the protestant bible, the bulwark of both. An achievement, worthy the fame of their ancient order — worthy the craft and ghostly prowess of the successions of Ignatius Loyola.