"Do not allow yourselves to be deceived by the cunning statements
of those who persistently claim to wish to be with the Church, to
love the Church, to fight so that people do not leave Her...But
judge them by their works. If they despise the shepherds of the
Church and even the Pope, if they attempt all means of evading their
authority in order to elude their directives and judgments..., then
about which Church do these men mean to speak? Certainly not about
that established on the foundations of the apostles and prophets,
with Christ Jesus Himself as the cornerstone (Eph. 2:20)." [Pope St. Pius X: Allocution of May 10, 1909]
Any correspondence will be presumed eligible for
blogging unless the sender otherwise specifies (cf. Welborn Protocol)
*Ecumenical Jihad listing is for weblogs or websites which are either dedicated
to or which to the webmaster (i) are worth reading and (ii) characteri ze in their general outlook the preservation of
general Judeo-Christian morality and which are aimed at positively integrating these elements into society. (Such
sites need not even be Catholic ones.)
As society has grown more estranged from its founding principles, I wish to
note sites which share the same sentiments for the restoration of society even if the means advocated in this
endeavour differ. The Lidless Eye Inquisition does not necessarily endorse particulars with sites under
:: Saturday, April 15, 2006 ::
Briefly on the Armenian Decree:
As this text was judged as too long for putting into the comments boxes, I am posting it here as a thread. Jim Scott's words will be in black font and any sources I cite in darkblue.
The prohibition against observing Old Testament ceremonies is found in session 11 of Florence however a brief reading of the Catholic Encylopedia will revieve ONLY session Six considered infallible.
One might instead say that the church is infallible in all matters that pertain to the deposit of faith either explicitly or implicitly. And following this criteria, only session six is ecumenical in the proper sense of being universal. The other sessions involved reunions of individual churches with the Roman Church. In the case of the Copts, as I noted earlier:
[T]he Copts being Alexandria based were probably in close contact with the Alexandrian Jews. The Alexandrian Jews were among the most cultured peoples in the world and probably because of this the Copts were to some extent seduced to a degree into involving themselves in their ceremonies to the point where their observance was viewed as a necessity. That is what the text seems to allude to if we look at the broader context. [Excerpt from The Lidless Eye Inquisition (circa March 6, 2006)]
There was a lot of anachronism in the Decrees of Florence pertaining to individual churches reuniting with the Roman Church. This does not mean that the decrees lacked authority of course, only that certain elements of them were not perminent and others (such as the reiterating of EENS in the Coptic reunion decree) were. And certainly the sacramental rites as outlined by Florence in the Armenian decree were not as history is more than amply a witness to.
I should note that Jim was quoting the 1913 CE and that is normally a reliable source. But on the subject of infallibility it often fudges and is not reliable in my experience. For there is no way the Armenian decree could have been seen as infallible because it noted as part of the form of sacraments certain elements that the eastern churches never followed. Reflect for a moment upon what I just said before continuing to read this post please because it is of no insignificant factor here.
If the Armenian decree was infallible, the Roman Church would have had to require reordination of eastern bishops since the traditioning of the paten and chalice was never part of the eastern ritual. It therefore was never considered a requirement as history amply demonstrates by the Roman Church not making this a requirement of the eastern churches in the reunion synods (i.e Constantinople IV in 869, Lyons II in 1274, Florence in 1439-1445) and separate reunion brought about outside of ecumenical synods (i.e. the Treaty of Brest in 1596 between the Ukrainian and Ruthinian Orthodox Churches and the Roman Catholic Church under Pope Clement VIII). All of these agreements would have required the eastern churches to revamp their sacramental formularies if what was outlined to the Armenians at Florence was actually a matter of infallible declaration or definition. History shows us though that the Roman Church never made this requirement; ergo there is nothing more to say on the fact that the Armenian decree was never seen as universal and therefore definitive. What remains to explain is the why which I will not attempt to do in brief.
Essentially, with the Armenians, it was a very complicated matter unlike with the Copts. For you see, the Armenians had split from Roman communion after Chalcedon (451) and therefore care needed to be taken to insure that their faith was not questioned in this reunion. Note what precedes the statements on the sacraments from the Armenian decree:
To avoid even the slightest delay in this holy project, we nominated from every rank of this sacred council experts in divine and human law to treat of the matter with the envoys with all care, study and diligence, closely inquiring of them about their faith in respect of the unity of the divine essence and the Trinity of divine persons, also about the humanity of our lord Jesus Christ, the seven sacraments of the church and other points concerning the orthodox faith and the rites of the universal church.[Council of Florence: Bull of Union with the Armenians (circa 1443)]
As you can see, this was much more than simply saying "welcome back" with some disciplinary restrictions as in the case of the Copts. Instead, this was a church which was 1,000 years behind the Roman church and the other eastern churches. The orthodoxy of their Christological understanding as well as understanding of the sacraments was something that was at issue here. The same synod noted this after the part I quoted above in these words:
So, after many debates, conferences and disputations, after a thorough examination of the written authorities which were produced from fathers and doctors of the church, and after discussion of the questions at issue, at length, so that in future there could be no doubt about the truth of the faith of the Armenians and that they should think in every way like the apostolic see and that the union should be stable and lasting with no cause for hesitation whatsoever we judged it advantageous, with the approval of this sacred council of Florence and the agreement of the said envoys, to give in this decree a summary of the truth of the orthodox faith that the Roman church professes about the above. [Council of Florence: Bull of Union with the Armenians (circa 1443)]
From there the synod made several decrees of a doctrinal nature and prudential judgments of a disciplinary nature -starting with the former:
In the first place, then, we give them the holy creed issued by the hundred and fifty bishops in the ecumenical council of Constantinople, with the added phrase and the Son, which for the sake of declaring the truth and from urgent necessity was licitly and reasonably added to that creed, which runs as follows: I believe . . . I We decree that this holy creed should be sung or read within the mass at least on Sundays and greater feasts, as is the Latin custom, in all Armenian churches.
In the second place, we give them the definition of the fourth council of Chalcedon about two natures in the one person of Christ, which was later renewed in the fifth and sixth universal councils. It runs as follows: This wise and saving creed ...
Thirdly, the definition about the two wills and two principles of action of Christ promulgated in the above-mentioned sixth council, the tenor of which is This pious and orthodox creed, and the rest which follows in the above-mentioned definition of the council of Chalcedon until the end, after which it continues thus: And we proclaim, etc.
Fourth, apart from the three synods of Nicaea, Constantinople and the first of Ephesus, the Armenians have accepted no other later universal synods nor the most blessed Leo, bishop of this holy see, by whose authority the council of Chalcedon met. For they claim that it was proposed to them that both the synod of Chalcedon and the said Leo had made the definition in accordance with the condemned heresy of Nestorius. So we instructed them and declared that such a suggestion was false and that the synod of Chalcedon and blessed Leo holily and rightly defined the truth of two natures in the one person of Christ, described above, against the impious tenets of Nestorius and Eutyches. We commanded that for the future they should hold and venerate the most blessed Leo, who was a veritable pillar of the faith and replete with all sanctity and doctrine, as a saint deservedly inscribed in the calendar of the saints; and that they should reverence and respect, like the rest of the faithful, not only the three above-mentioned synods but also all other universal synods legitimately celebrated by the authority of the Roman pontiff. [Council of Florence: Bull of Union with the Armenians (circa 1443)]
From there the decree gets into matters not of doctrine but of discipline. Observe the language used:
Fifthly, for the easier instruction of the Armenians of today and in the future we reduce the truth about the sacraments of the church to the following brief scheme. [Council of Florence: Bull of Union with the Armenians (circa 1443)]
From there the synod outlined the theology of the sacraments and the disciplines of administration as practiced by the Roman Church. The reason for making the rites as the Roman Church administered them a requirement is outlined earlier in the decree and boils down to this: the faith of a people separated from the Roman Church for nearly 1000 years was amply ripe for questioning otherwise. The reunion of the Roman Church with the major eastern churches was effected six years earlier (at least on paper) and therefore the common apostolic faith was recognized there. For that reason, if the Armenians accepted the various professions of faith, accepted Chalcedon and venerated St. Leo the Great, etc., it might not be seen as enough by some people. But if the Armenians administered the sacraments using the rituals of the Roman Church (whose faith was not questioned), that would "seal the deal" essentially. It was not a universal decree either in law or fact and those who claim it was need to reconcile their view with what history both outlines as well as omits -points I touched on briefly in this note above.
Also session 9 contains teaching to the Armenians regarding the valid matter of the sacrement of orders which was later abrogated by a more difinitive ruling from the magesterium.
Or more correctly noted, the disciplinary injunctions set down for the benefit of the reuniting Armenians of the fifteenth century were recognized explicitly (as opposed to previously by implication) as not definitive.
Thus the Pope can in theory abrogate session eleven if it wanted too. Session Six & the dogma of EENS are however forever (as understood by Pius IX, Vatican II, John Paul IIetc... & NOT by that twit Feeney).
Um, I am not sure I would take it that far...it suffices to say that certain parts of the individual reunion sessions were highly anachronistic and could be loosed by the same keys as they were previously bound. But the doctrinal principles behind them (i.e. that the old testament rituals are in no sense required for salvation) remains intact stable and valid and always will.
:: Shawn 11:01 AM [+] | ::
:: Saturday, April 08, 2006 ::
Bits and Pieces on the "Counter-Syllabus" Controversy: (With Kevin Tierney)
This is basically parts of a chat I had with Kevin a few days ago. The pretext was the Tom DeLay situation initially but eventually it veered into other subjects including one of my past writings. Kevin's words will be black font.
fidelity to principles [can be an annoyance] but without it, what do we have left?
i just think you need to stop attempting to add heads to your mantle :)
believe it or not, I do not try to do it and I am doing nothing different now than I ever have in that regard
it is just that a lot of friends and acquaintances have been straying into the gunfire the past year
or how about they've always been there?
and any possible inconsistencies on their part which I either did not pay much attention to in the past or only recently started seeing with greater clarity
happened to occur in circumstances where I was involved directly
but once again, they aren't going after enemies you guys find expedient anymore
I have never taken that approach though Kev and some of what we are seeing now publicly took place in private behind the scenes and at a much less intense level in the past
it's tough to see how that isn't the case though shawn. Absent your lil defense of matatics from keating, when these kinda people did this stuff to trads or others, there was silence in the crowd i just think you couldn't see it
there was more to it than just the Matatics/Keating thing
I note that one cause it was one of the earliest examples of when I started glimpsing a double standard which I did not like and in retrospect I have disassociated myself from the "apologist" tag ever since though I did not at the time consciously make that decision if that makes any sense
the conscious aspect of it came a little later on...and sometimes when people go beyond the acceptable boundaries, one notices in them something that may have been there before but which (due to a desire to practice authentic charity however imperfectly) was not emphasized becomes a point of emphasis
I was never not one to defend the Indult crowd
and with certain renegade sorts like Remnant, I usually chose to focus on core arguments and not get the personalities involved...though admittedly I did not always succeed in that endeavour (the critique of a Guimaraes essay in 2000 comes to mind as one where I made it personal mainly cause they ran the piece three times in five months as some kind of an "uber summa" or whatever: that seemed to me to merit special attention)
and of course Ferrara's attack on me in the Remnant back in mid 2003
but beyond that, it has generally been issues and not personalities...presumably you remember how I handled the Ferrara-Guitierrez thing I did not uncritically defend Omar as some were doing
well the counter-syllabus issue had you learned to speak to the ordinary man and economized chances are you would not have been mentioned since i know what your saying now, but at even tenth glance 99% of people had no clue what you meant and hence Ferrara could make a parody of it
I was explaining the cardinal's intent...and I have gotten no questions about that writing from readers incidentally enough
though I have gotten positive feedback from those who were happy to see that the idea of a "reversed syllabus" does not withstand scrutiny
at the same time though, that is a more complicated essay writing
much as the Distinctions essay was
not all of the essays I did were done at the same level of cognition if that makes any sense (some dealt with more complicated subjects, others with less complicated ones)
I doubt even the lessor-complicated ones would be comprehended well by Mr. Esquire though but I digress
the counter-syllabus issue could've been explained a lot easier and your response gave credence to the idea that this was some gnosis the ordinary manc ouldn't comprehend, as opposed to the fairly clear-cut syllabus
but of course the syllabus was not so "clean cut" that was the point all along the introduction of that piece was written last as is my wont for any writing I do
notice I said "fairly" because for the most part one can understand what the syllabus is saying
[The Syllabus essay introduction] may well have some problems to it but I did sustain the theory I intended to prove in that writing and might I add no one else had written on that subject up to that time?
irrelevant me think i'm not saying i neccessarily disagree with you remember
well, when you have a common accusation that is repeated ad nausium and taken as a proverb and there is nothing written to confute the "proverb" it is easy to see how even the best intentioned people can be confused and the Remnant crowd feeds off of confusion as yuou well know (and create no small amount of their own)
confusion you didn't do much to alleviate in the practical level since the practical can be just as important as the ideological
that may well be so I honestly cannot recall what I wrote for the introduction...only that some found it confusing I suppose I could look it up
it was statements like that and Apolonio's statement that "well someone with a PhD in anthropology will never misunderstand JPII's encyclicals" (which he said to me in a debate) that really made "your camp" look ridiclous imo
I was unaware that I belonged to any particular "camp"
as far as JP II's encyclicals go, they are really not that hard to understand viz. the fundamentals that is not to say that some of the stuff is not of higher level of course viz. cognition
the "camp" being those who were writing against trads, LEI
but that is hardly uncommon for any papal encyclicals
granted, but one does not need a PhD to understand it
I remind you that the "trads" frequently misunderstand the encyclicals of Pius XII, etc.
(I never said they did)
do you think I have a PHD in anthropology?
I know you didn't I was just remarking Apolonio's statement at LEI during one of our debates read :-p
granted I will once the online degree mill sends me the certificate...but not at the moment ;-)
I am not one to police anyone's debates on LEI or anywhere else
which is fine but you guys still looked ridiclous as a whole when those remarks were made on your blog
except for inappropriate stuff of coruse if they make a bad argument, then it may well be exposed and they would have to deal with it
notice if you will that I have left those things on the weblog unedited if anything it shows that we at LEI are not immune from occasionally making a bad argument
by contrast, most "trads" like to revise the historical record when their glitches are pointed out rather than admit they made a mistake
some former trads (such as XXXXXXX XXXX) do the same thing
I have never had much use for that sort of thing
by the way, here's what i found confusing, and I still think it's a hodgepoge that nobody is going to understand unless they read all your works
"Rather, the intended meaning of the Cardinal Prefect was that the condemnation of errors in the Syllabus could logically be seen as being countered by positive teaching in GS that encapsulates the elements of truth contained in the aforementioned errors. Understanding the statement in this light, the negative element of the summary condemnations complimented by the later positive and elaborated teaching encapsulating what elements of truth the previously condemned errors contained results in the climate moving from negative and reactive to positive and pro-active."
all you needed to say was the final statement of your paragraph "GS outlined a positive agenda while the Syllabus of Errors (andQuanta Cura which accompanied it) merely condemned errors and outlined no actual agenda."
well, I could be longwinded back then
that what occured was a "shift on emphasis" rather than a shift of doctrine
and yes, upon reviewing that text, you are right
if I ever get around to revisiting those older writings again to fix broken live links and the like (which I may do this summer if time allows for it) that text will need to be revised a bit to be easier to understand
(even though that essay is one which built on previous ones in the series)
and the whole idea that your a theological lightweight if one fails to grasp your explanation I think needs to be excised as well
did I say that?
that's the implication when this is said:
"Most people are nowhere near as theologically acute as the Cardinal Prefect is, therefore the import of this statement can be lost on them. However, Cardinal Ratzinger is not the first eminent theologian of the Church in recent years to fail to accommodate his discourse to the understanding of average people in a manner that does not come across as troubling on the surface."
Cardinal Ratzinger maening what you said he meant in that long-winded rant i pointed out before
my intention was to note that if even eminent theologians can be confused by that statement in its wording, others can be too ergo, one should not rashly presume that they can cast aspersions on the orthodoxy of Ratzinger or the Council or anyone else
based on the presupposition they bring to the Syllabus of Pius IX -presuppositions which may themselves be erroneous from the get-go
or in shorter form: the syllabus does not necessarily say what a casual review of it may indicate therefore, one should not take a casual review and try to cram everything into that weltanschauung and treat anything that does not neatly fit as unorthodox or otherwise suspect
that's all you need to say right there :)
believe it or not, that essay used to be nine pages longer than it now is I had an addendum at the end which I decided to excise for the sake of making the piece shorter
well apparently you missed a few points. Because the one paragraph you admitted was probably a lil too long-winded and needs to be made easier to understand is exactly what everyone parodied you on
of course if that was not there, they would have found something else to mock
i dunno, that was basically the big thing to mock because it was so easy lol
those who are not interested in interacting with ideas will always find a scapegoat to justify their negligence
in my own defense though, I was [mentally exhausted] when that essay was written
since the entire impetus was the statement wasn't as ambigious as everyone made it out to be, and your rationalization was about as ambigious as can be
unintended irony huh?
without a doubt, but the law of unintended consequences can be a bitch sometime
true...but your point is a valid one I may blog parts of this chat constituting a proposed replacement text for that longwinded thing to LEI so I have it for a reference later on
:: Shawn 2:54 PM [+] | ::