Thursday, May 25, 2006

Filioque and Eastern Orthodoxy

One of the major issues between Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy is the Creedal statement about the Holy Spirit who "proceeds from the Father and the Son (Lat. "filioque"). The Eastern Orthodox have difficulty with the Latin Rite profession of "and the Son" (filioque). Our Catholic Eastern Rite continues to assert the same ancient Creed as the Eastern Orthodox which omits the "and the Son" narrative, but they understand and assent to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, which states:

245 The apostolic faith concerning the Spirit was confessed by the second ecumenical council at Constantinople (381): "We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord and giver of life, who proceeds from the Father."71 By this confession, the Church recognizes the Father as "the source and origin of the whole divinity".72 But the eternal origin of the Spirit is not unconnected with the Son's origin: "The Holy Spirit, the third person of the Trinity, is God, one and equal with the Father and the Son, of the same substance and also of the same nature. . . Yet he is not called the Spirit of the Father alone,. . . but the Spirit of both the Father and the Son."73 The Creed of the Church from the Council of Constantinople confesses: "With the Father and the Son, he is worshipped and glorified."74

246 The Latin tradition of the Creed confesses that the Spirit "proceeds from the Father and the Son (filioque)". The Council of Florence in 1438 explains: "The Holy Spirit is eternally from Father and Son; He has his nature and subsistence at once (simul) from the Father and the Son. He proceeds eternally from both as from one principle and through one spiration. . . . And, since the Father has through generation given to the only-begotten Son everything that belongs to the Father, except being Father, the Son has also eternally from the Father, from whom he is eternally born, that the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Son."75

247 The affirmation of the filioque does not appear in the Creed confessed in 381 at Constantinople. But Pope St. Leo I, following an ancient Latin and Alexandrian tradition, had already confessed it dogmatically in 447,76 even before Rome, in 451 at the Council of Chalcedon, came to recognize and receive the Symbol of 381. The use of this formula in the Creed was gradually admitted into the Latin liturgy (between the eighth and eleventh centuries). The introduction of the filioque into the Niceno-Constantinopolitan Creed by the Latin liturgy constitutes moreover, even today, a point of disagreement with the Orthodox Churches.

248 At the outset the Eastern tradition expresses the Father's character as first origin of the Spirit. By confessing the Spirit as he "who proceeds from the Father", it affirms that he comes from the Father through the Son.77 The Western tradition expresses first the consubstantial communion between Father and Son, by saying that the Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son (filioque). It says this, "legitimately and with good reason",78 for the eternal order of the divine persons in their consubstantial communion implies that the Father, as "the principle without principle",79 is the first origin of the Spirit, but also that as Father of the only Son, he is, with the Son, the single principle from which the Holy Spirit proceeds.80 This legitimate complementarity, provided it does not become rigid, does not affect the identity of faith in the reality of the same mystery confessed.

71 Nicene Creed; cf. DS 150.
72 Council of Toledo VI (638): DS 490.
73 Council of Toledo XI (675): DS 527.
74 Nicene Creed; cf. DS 150.
75 Council of Florence (1439): DS 1300-1301.
76 Cf. Leo I, Quam laudabiliter (447): DS 284.
77 Jn 15:26; cf. AG 2.
78 Council of Florence (1439): DS 1302.
79 Council of Florence (1442): DS 1331.
80 Cf. Council of Lyons II (1274): DS 850.

Nonetheless, an Eastern Orthodox Christian polemically asserted:
The East rejects the Filioque because it is antithetical to the Cappadocian understanding of the Trinity.
However, not all the East rejects it. Some understand it in its authentic meaning, which seems to reduce the disussion to mere semantical differences.

St. Athanasius, "the Word is in the Father, and the Spirit is given from the Word." (Discourse Against the Arians, 3, 25).

St. Cyril of Alexandria, (AD 424), in his THESAURUS (Treasury of the Holy and Consubstantial Trinity):
Since the Holy Spirit when He is in us effects our being conformed to God, and He actually proceeds from Father and Son, it is abundantly clear that He is of the divine essence, in it in essence and proceeding from it.
Eastern Orthodox Bishop Kallistos Ware stated in May of 1995:
"The filioque controversy which has separated us [Eastern Orthodox and Catholics] for so many centuries is more than a mere technicality, but it is not insoluble. Qualifying the firm position taken when I wrote [my book] The Orthodox Church twenty years ago, I now believe, after further study, that the problem is more in the area of semantics and different emphases than in any basic doctrinal differences" (Speech to a symposium on the Trinity; Rose Hill College, Aiken, South Carolina; emphasis added).
Metropolitan Damaskinos of Switzerland, to Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, 30 October 2000:
We have learned together how theology must be done with reference to the special traditions of the West. We have experienced the way in which the revealed truth was differently received, lived out, and understood in East and West and that the variance in theologies can be understood as compatible within one and the same faith.... one ought not to be a priori inclined to identify faith, and its expression, with particular theologies....

Together we arrived at the conclusion that our differences are to be understood in the sense of varying legitimate developments of one and the same apostolic faith in East and West, and not as divisions in the tradition of the faith itself.

... the main obstacle to the restoration of full communion is the pope's primacy of jurisdiction...
Despite the polemical charges of some, I think there are many learned Eastern Orthodox scholars and clergy who see that "our differences are...legitimate developments of one and the same apostolic faith," with the main obstacle being the pope's primacy of jurisdiction.

God Bless,


Saturday, May 20, 2006

Catholic Dogmas and Doctrine

De fide (of faith) dogmas of Catholicism are infallible teachings of the Church which demand the assent of faith from all Catholics. Sententia certa (certain teachings), while morally certain are not yet defined or understood to be de fide (infallible) by the Church. Nonetheless, sententia certa are binding upon all Catholics demanding religious assent of mind and will.

While not an exhaustive list, the following teaching are de fide and sententia certa according to Dr. Ludwig Ott's Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma, edited in English by James Canon Bastible, D.D., translated from German by Patrck Lynch, Ph.D., Tan Publishing, Rockford IL, Fourth Edition, May 1960:

[For more detail on each teaching, you can purchase Dr. Ott's text here:
Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma ]

De fide dogmas:
  1. God, our Creator and Lord, can be known with certainty, by the natural light of reason from created things.
  2. Gods existence is not merely an object of natural rational knowledge, but also an object of supernatural faith.
  3. God’s Nature is incomprehensible to men.
  4. The blessed in Heaven posses an immediate intuitive knowledge of the Divine Essence.
  5. The Immediate Vision of God transcends the natural power of cognition of the human soul, and is therefore supernatural.
  6. The soul, for the Immediate Vision of God, requires the light of glory.
  7. God’s Essence is also incomprehensible to the blessed in Heaven.
  8. The Divine Attributes are really identical among themselves and with the Divine Essence.
  9. God is absolutely perfect.
  10. God is actually infinite in every perfection.
  11. God is absolutely simple.
  12. There is only One God.
  13. The One God is, in the ontological sense, The True God.
  14. God possesses an infinite power of cognition.
  15. God is absolute Veracity.
  16. God is absolutely faithful.
  17. God is absolute ontological Goodness in Himself and in relation to others.
  18. God is absolute Moral Goodness or Holiness.
  19. God is absolute Benignity.
  20. God is absolutely immutable.
  21. God is eternal.
  22. God is immense or absolutely immeasurable.
  23. God is everywhere present in created space.
  24. God’s knowledge is infinite.
  25. God knows all that is merely possible by the knowledge of simple intelligence (scientia simplicis intelligentiae).
  26. God knows all real things in the past, the present and the future (Scientia visionis).
  27. By knowledge of vision (scientia visionis) God also foresees the free acts of the rational creatures with infallible certainty.
  28. God’s Divine will is infinite.
  29. God loves Himself of necessity, but loves and wills the creation of extra-Divine things, on the other hand, with freedom.
  30. God is almighty.
  31. God is the Lord of the heavens and of the earth.
  32. God is infinitely just.
  33. God is infinitely merciful.
  34. In God there are Three Persons, the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost. Each of the Three Persons possesses the one (numerical) Divine Essence.
  35. In God there are two Internal Divine Processions.
  36. The Divine Persons, not the Divine Nature, are the subject of the Internal Divine processions (in the active and in the passive sense).
  37. The Second Divine Person proceeds from the First Divine Person by Generation, and therefore is related to Him as Son to a Father.
  38. The Holy Ghost proceeds from the Father and from the Son as from a Single Principle through a Single Spiration.
  39. The Holy Ghost does not proceed through generation but through spiration.
  40. The Relations in God are really identical with the Divine Nature.
  41. The Three Divine Persons are in One Another.
  42. All the ad extra Activities of God are common to all Three Persons.
  43. All that exists outside God was, in its whole substance, produced out of nothing by God.
  44. God was moved by His Goodness to create the world.
  45. The world was created for the Glorification of God.
  46. The Three Divine Persons are one single, common Principle of the Creation.
  47. God created the world free from exterior compulsion and inner necessity.
  48. God has created a good world.
  49. The world had a beginning in time.
  50. God alone created the World.
  51. God keeps all created things in existence.
  52. God through His providence protects and guides all that He has created.
  53. The first man was created by God.
  54. Man consists of two essential parts--a material body and a spiritual soul.
  55. The rational soul is per se the essential form of the body.
  56. Every human being possesses an individual soul.
  57. God has conferred on man a supernatural Destiny.
  58. Our first parents, before the Fall, were endowed with sanctifying grace.
  59. They were also endowed with donum immortalitatis, i.e., the gift of bodily immortality.
  60. Our first parents in paradise sinned grievously through transgression of the Divine probationary commandment.
  61. Through the sin our first parents lost sanctifying grace and provoked the anger and the indignation of God.
  62. Our first parents became subject to death and to the dominion of the Devil.
  63. Adam’s sin is transmitted to his posterity, not by imitation, but by descent.
  64. Original sin is transmitted by natural generation.
  65. In the state of original sin man is deprived of sanctifying grace and all that this implies, as well as of the preternatural gifts of integrity.
  66. Souls who depart this life in the state of original sin are excluded from the Beatific Vision of God.
  67. In the beginning of time God created spiritual essences (angels) out of nothing.
  68. The nature of angels is spiritual.
  69. The secondary task of the good angels is the protection of men and care for their salvation.
  70. The Devil possesses a certain dominion over mankind by reason of Adam’s sin.
  71. Jesus Christ is the True God and True Son of God.
  72. Christ assumed a real body, not an apparent body.
  73. Christ assumed not only a body but also a rational soul.
  74. Christ was truly generated and born of a daughter of Adam, the Virgin Mary.
  75. The Divine and the human natures are united hypostatically in Christ, that is, joined to each other in one Person.
  76. Christ Incarnate is a single, that is, a sole Person. He is God and man at the same time.
  77. The God-Logos is connected with the flesh by an inner, physical or substantial unification. Christ is not the bearer of God, but is God really.
  78. The human and the divine activities predicated of Christ in Holy Writ and in the Fathers may not be divided between two persons or hypostases, the Man-Christ and the God-Logos, but must be attributed to the one Christ, the Logos become Flesh. It is the Divine Logos, who suffered in the flesh, was crucified, died, and rose again.
  79. The Holy Virgin is the Mother of God since she truly bore the God-Logos become Flesh.
  80. In the Hypostatic Union each of the two natures of Christ continues unimpaired, untransformed and unmixed with the other.
  81. Each of the two natures in Christ possesses its own natural will and its own natural mode of operation.
  82. The Hypostatic Union of Christ’s human nature with the Divine Logos took place at the moment of conception.
  83. The Hypostatic Union will never cease.
  84. The Hypostatic Union was effected by the Three Divine Persons acting in common.
  85. Only the Second Divine Person became Man.
  86. Not only as God but also as man Jesus Christ is the natural Son of God.
  87. The God-Man Jesus Christ is to be venerated with one single mode of Worship, the absolute Worship of Latria which is due to God alone.
  88. Christ’s Divine and Human characteristics and activities are to be predicated of the one Word Incarnate.
  89. Christ was free from all sin, from original sin as well as from all personal sin.
  90. Christ’s human nature was passible (capable of sensation & suffering).
  91. The Son of God became man in order to redeem men.
  92. Fallen man cannot redeem himself.
  93. The God-Man Jesus Christ is a High Priest.
  94. Christ offered Himself on the Cross as a true and proper sacrifice.
  95. Christ by His Sacrifice on the Cross has ransomed us and reconciled us with God.
  96. Christ did not die for the predestined only.
  97. Christ’s Atonement does not extend to the fallen angels.
  98. Christ, through His Passion and Death, merited reward from God.
  99. After His Death, Christ’s soul, which was separated from His Body, descended into the underworld.
  100. On the third day after His Death Christ rose gloriously from the dead.
  101. Christ ascended Body and Soul into Heaven and sits at the right hand of the Father.
  102. Mary is truly the Mother of God.
  103. Mary was conceived without stain of Original sin.
  104. Mary conceived by the Holy Ghost without the co-operation of man.
  105. Mary bore her Son without any violation of her virginal integrity.
  106. Also after the Birth of Jesus Mary remained a Virgin.
  107. Mary was assumed body and soul into Heaven.
  108. There is a supernatural intervention of God in the faculties of the soul, which precedes the free act of the will.
  109. There is a supernatural influence of God in the faculties of the soul which coincides in time with man’s free act of will.
  110. For every salutary act internal supernatural grace of God (gratia elevans) is absolutely necessary.
  111. Internal supernatural grace is absolutely necessary for the beginning of faith and of salvation.
  112. Without the special help of God the justified cannot persevere to the end in justification.
  113. The justified person is not able for his whole life long to avoid all sins, even venial sins, without the special privilege of the grace of God.
  114. Even in the fallen state, man can, by his natural intellectual power, know religious and moral truths.
  115. For the performance of a morally good action Sanctifying Grace is not required.
  116. In the state of fallen nature it is morally impossible for man without Supernatural Revelation, to know easily, with absolute certainty and without admixture of error, all religious and moral truths of the natural order.
  117. Grace cannot be merited by natural works either de condigno or de congruo.
  118. God gives all the just sufficient grace (gratia proxime vel remote sufficiens) for the observation of the Divine Commandments.
  119. God, by His Eternal Resolve of Will, has predetermined certain men to eternal blessedness.
  120. God, by an Eternal Resolve of His Will, predestines certain men, on account of their foreseen sins, to eternal rejection.
  121. The Human Will remains free under the influence of efficacious grace, which is not irresistible.
  122. There is a grace which is truly sufficient and yet remains inefficacious (gratia vere et mere sufficiens).
  123. The sinner can and must prepare himself by the help of actual grace for the reception of the grace by which he is justified.
  124. The justification of an adult is not possible without Faith.
  125. Besides faith, further acts of disposition must be present.
  126. Sanctifying grace sanctifies the soul.
  127. Sanctifying grace makes the just man a friend of God.
  128. Sanctifying grace makes the just man a child of God and gives him a claim to the inheritance of Heaven.
  129. The three Divine or Theological Virtues of Faith, Hope and Charity are infused with Sanctifying grace.
  130. Without special Divine Revelation no one can know with the certainty of faith, if he be in the state of grace.
  131. The degree of justifying grace is not identical in all the just.
  132. Grace can be increased by good works.
  133. The grace by which we are justified may be lost, and is lost by every grievous [mortal, serious] sin.
  134. By his good works the justified man really acquires a claim to supernatural reward from God.
  135. A just man merits for himself through each good work an increase of sanctifying grace, eternal life (if he dies in a state of grace) and an increase of heavenly glory.
  136. The Church was founded by the God-Man Jesus Christ.
  137. Our Redeemer Himself conserves with divine power the society founded by Him, the Church.
  138. Christ is the Divine Redeemer of His Body, the Church.
  139. Christ founded the Church in order to continue His work of redemption for all time.
  140. Christ gave His Church a hierarchical constitution.
  141. The powers bestowed on the Apostles have descended to the bishops.
  142. Christ appointed the Apostle Peter to be the first of all the Apostles and to be the visible head of the whole Church, by appointing him immediately and personally to the primacy of jurisdiction.
  143. According to Christ’s ordinance, Peter is to have successors in his Primacy over the whole Church and for all time.
  144. The successors of Peter in the Primacy are the bishops of Rome.
  145. The Pope possesses full and supreme power of jurisdiction over the whole Church, not merely in matters of faith and morals, but also in Church discipline and in the government of the Church.
  146. The Pope is infallible when he speaks ex cathedra.
  147. By virtue of Divine Right the bishops possess an ordinary power of government over their dioceses.
  148. Christ is the Head of the Church.
  149. In the final decision on doctrines concerning faith and morals the Church is infallible.
  150. The primary object of the Infallibility is the formally revealed truths of Christian Doctrine concerning faith and morals.
  151. The totality of the Bishops is infallible, when they, either assembled in general council or scattered over the earth, propose a teaching of faith or morals as one to be held by all the faithful.
  152. The Church founded by Christ is unique and one.
  153. The Church founded by Christ is holy.
  154. The Church founded by Christ is catholic.
  155. The Church founded by Christ is apostolic.
  156. Membership of the Church is necessary for all men for salvation.
  157. It is permissible and profitable to venerate the Saints in Heaven, and to invoke their intercession.
  158. It is permissible and profitable to venerate the relics of the Saints.
  159. It is permissible and profitable to venerate images of the Saints.
  160. The living Faithful can come to the assistance of the Souls in Purgatory by their intercessions (suffrages).
  161. The Sacraments of the New Covenant contain the grace which they signify, and bestow it on those who do not hinder it.
  162. The Sacraments work ex opere operato (simply by being done).
  163. All the Sacraments of the New Covenant confer sanctifying grace on the receivers.
  164. Three Sacraments, Baptism, Confirmation and Holy Orders, imprint a character, that is, an indelible spiritual mark, and for this reason cannot be repeated.
  165. The Sacramental Character is a spiritual mark imprinted on the soul.
  166. The Sacramental Character continues at least until the death of its bearer.
  167. All the Sacraments of the New Covenant were instituted by Jesus Christ.
  168. There are Seven Sacraments of the New Law.
  169. The Sacraments of the New Covenant are necessary for the salvation of mankind.
  170. For the valid dispensing of the Sacraments it is necessary that the minister accomplish the Sacramental Sign in the proper manner.
  171. The minister must further have the intention at least of doing what the Church does.
  172. In the case of adult recipients moral worthiness is necessary for the worthy or fruitful reception of the Sacraments.
  173. Baptism is a true Sacrament instituted by Jesus Christ.
  174. The materia remota of the Sacrament of Baptism is true and natural water.
  175. Baptism confers the grace of justification.
  176. Baptism effects the remission of all punishments of sin, both the eternal and the temporal.
  177. Eve if it be unworthily received, valid Baptism imprints on the soul of the recipient an indelible spiritual mark, the Baptismal Character, and for this reason, the Sacrament cannot be repeated.
  178. Baptism by water (Baptismus fluminis) is, since the promulgation of the Gospel, necessary for all men without exception, for salvation.
  179. Baptism can be validly administered by anyone.
  180. Baptism can be received by any person in the wayfaring state who is not already baptised.
  181. The Baptism of young children is valid and licit.
  182. Confirmation is a true Sacrament properly so-called.
  183. Confirmation imprints on the soul an indelible spiritual mark, and for this reason, cannot be repeated.
  184. The ordinary minister of Confirmation is the Bishop alone.
  185. The Body and Blood of Jesus Christ are truly, really and substantially present in the Eucharist.
  186. Christ becomes present in the Sacrament of the Altar by the transformation of the whole substance of the bread into His Body and the whole substance of the wine into His Blood.
  187. The Accidents of bread and wine continue after the change of the substance.
  188. The Body and the Blood of Christ together with His Soul and His Divinity and therefore the Whole Christ are truly present in the Eucharist.
  189. The Whole Christ is present under each of the two Species.
  190. When either consecrated species is divided the Whole Christ is present in each part of the species.
  191. After the Consecration has been completed the Body and Blood are permanently present in the Eucharist.
  192. The Worship of Adoration (latria) must be given to Christ present in the Eucharist.
  193. The Eucharist is a true Sacrament instituted by Christ.
  194. The matter for the consummation of the Eucharist is bread and wine.
  195. For children before the age of reason the reception of the Eucharist is not necessary for salvation.
  196. Communion under two forms is not necessary for any individual member of the Faithful, either by reason of Divine precept or as a means of salvation.
  197. The power of consecration resides in a validly consecrated priest only.
  198. The Sacrament of the Eucharist can be validly received by every baptized person in the wayfaring state, including young children.
  199. For the worthy reception of the Eucharist the state of grace as well as the proper and pious disposition are necessary.
  200. The Holy Mass is a true and proper Sacrifice.
  201. In the Sacrifice of the Mass, Christ’s Sacrifice on the Cross is made present, its memory is celebrated, and its saving power is applied.
  202. In the Sacrifice of the Mass and in the Sacrifice of the Cross the Sacrificial Gift and the Primary Sacrificing Priest are identical; only the nature and mode of the offering are different.
  203. The Sacrifice of the Mass is not merely a sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving, but also a sacrifice of expiation and impetration.
  204. The Church has received from Christ the power of remitting sins committed after Baptism.
  205. By the Church’s Absolution sins are truly and immediately remitted.
  206. The Church’s power to forgive sins extends to all sin without exception.
  207. The exercise of the Church’s power to forgive sins is a judicial act.
  208. The forgiveness of sins which takes place in the Tribunal of Penance is a true and proper Sacrament, which is distinct from the Sacrament of Baptism.
  209. Extra-sacramental justification is effected by perfect sorrow only when it is associated with the desire for the Sacrament (votum sacramenti).
  210. Contrition springing from the motive of fear is a morally good and supernatural act.
  211. The Sacramental confession of sins is ordained by God and is necessary for salvation.
  212. By virtue of Divine ordinance all grievous sins (mortal, serious) according to kind and number, as well as those circumstances which alter their nature, are subject to the obligation of confession.
  213. The confession of venial sins is not necessary but is permitted and is useful.
  214. All temporal punishments for sin are not always remitted by God with the guilt of sin and the eternal punishment.
  215. The priest has the right and the duty, according to the nature of the sins and the ability of the penitent, to impose salutary and appropriate works of satisfaction.
  216. Extra-sacramental penitential works, such as the performance of voluntary penitential practices and the patient bearing of trials sent by God, possess satisfactory value.
  217. The form of the Sacrament of Penance consists in the words of Absolution.
  218. Absolution, in association with the acts of the penitent, effects the forgiveness of sins.
  219. The principal effect of the Sacrament of Penance is the reconciliation of the sinner with God.
  220. The Sacrament of Penance is necessary for salvation to those who, after Baptism, fall into grievous sin.
  221. The sole possessors of the Church’s Power of Absolution are the bishops and priests.
  222. Absolution given by deacons, clerics of lower rank, and laymen is not Sacramental Absolution.
  223. The Sacrament of Penance can be received by any baptized person, who, after Baptism, has committed a grievous or venial sin.
  224. The Church possesses the power to grant Indulgences.
  225. The use of Indulgences is useful and salutary to the Faithful.
  226. Extreme Unction is a true and proper Sacrament instituted by Christ.
  227. The remote matter of Extreme Unction is oil.
  228. The form consists in the prayer of the priest for the sick person which accompanies the anointing.
  229. Extreme Unction gives the sick person sanctifying grace in order to arouse and strengthen him.
  230. Extreme Unction effects the remission of grievous sins still remaining and of venial sins.
  231. Extreme Unction sometimes effects the restoration of bodily health, if this be of spiritual advantage.
  232. Only bishops and priests can validly administer Extreme Unction.
  233. Extreme Unction can be received only by the Faithful who are seriously ill.
  234. Holy Order is a true and proper Sacrament which was instituted by Christ.
  235. The consecration of priests is a Sacrament.
  236. Bishops are superior to priests.
  237. The Sacrament of Order confers sanctifying grace on the recipient.
  238. The Sacrament of Order imprints a character on the recipient.
  239. The Sacrament of Order confers a permanent spiritual power on the recipient.
  240. The ordinary dispenser of all grades of Order, both the sacramental and the non-sacramental, is the validly consecrated bishop alone.
  241. Marriage is a true and proper Sacrament instituted by God.
  242. From the sacramental contract of marriage emerges the Bond of Marriage, which binds both marriage partners to a lifelong indivisible community of life.
  243. The Sacrament of Matrimony bestows Sanctifying Grace on the contracting parties.
  244. In the present order of salvation death is a punishment for sin.
  245. All human beings subject to original sin are subject to the law of death.
  246. The souls of the just which in the moment of death are free from all guilt of sin and punishment for sin, enter into Heaven.
  247. The bliss of heaven lasts for all eternity.
  248. The degree of perfection of the beatific vision granted to the just is proportioned to each one’s merits.
  249. The souls of those who die in the condition of personal grievous sin enter Hell.
  250. The punishment of Hell lasts for all eternity.
  251. The souls of the just which, in the moment of death, are burdened with venial sins or temporal punishment due to sins, enter Purgatory.
  252. At the end of the world Christ will come again in glory to pronounce judgment.
  253. All the dead will rise again on the last day with their bodies.
  254. Christ, on His second coming, will judge all men.
Sententia certa (certain doctrines):
  1. With Christ and the Apostles General Revelation concluded.
  2. With Christ and the Apostles General Revelation concluded.
  3. Our natural knowledge of God in this world is not as immediate, intuitive cognition, but a mediate, abstractive knowledge, because it is attained through the knowledge of creatures.
  4. Our knowledge of God here below is not proper but analogical.
  5. God is absolute Beauty.
  6. God’s knowledge is purely and simply actual.
  7. God’s knowledge is subsistent.
  8. God’s knowledge is comprehensive.
  9. God’s knowledge is independent of extra-divine things.
  10. The primary and formal object of the Divine Cognition is God Himself.
  11. The Son proceeds from the Intellect of the Father by way of Generation.
  12. The Holy Ghost proceeds from the will or from the mutual love of the Father and of the Son.
  13. The Father sends the Son: the Father and the Son send the Holy Ghost.
  14. The world is the work of the Divine Wisdom.
  15. God was free to create this world or any other.
  16. The whole human race stems from one single human pair.
  17. Every individual soul was immediately created out of nothing by God.
  18. Adam received sanctifying grace not merely for himself, but for all his posterity.
  19. God set a supernatural final end for the angels, the immediate vision of God, and endowed them with sanctifying grace in order that they might achieve this end.
  20. The angels were subjected to a moral testing.
  21. The evil spirits (demons) were created good by God; they became evil through their own fault.
  22. The primary task of the good angels is the glorification and the service of God.
  23. Every one of the faithful has his own special guardian angel from baptism.
  24. The Hypostatic Union was never interrupted.
  25. The Blood in the Living Body of Jesus Christ is an integral constituent part of human nature, immediately, not merely mediately, united with the Person of the Divine Logos.
  26. Just as Latria is due to the whole Human nature of Christ, so is it due to the individual parts of His nature.
  27. Christ’s soul possessed the immediate vision of God from the first moment of its existence.
  28. Christ’s human knowledge was free from positive ignorance and from error.
  29. By reason of His endowment with the fullness of created habitual grace, Christ’s soul is also accidentally holy.
  30. Christ’s humanity, as instrument of the Logos, possesses the power of producing supernatural effects.
  31. Christ’s soul was subject to sensual emotions.
  32. God was not compelled to redeem mankind by either an internal or an external compulsion.
  33. Christ is the Supreme Prophet promised in the Old Covenant and the absolute teacher of humanity.
  34. Christ merited for Himself the condition of exaltation (Resurrection, Transfiguration of the body, Ascension into Heaven).
  35. Christ merited all supernatural graces received by fallen mankind.
  36. The underworld is the place of detention for the souls of the just of the pre-Christian era, the so-called vestibule of hell (limbus Patrum).
  37. Mary was a Virgin before, during and after the Birth of Jesus Christ.
  38. Mary gave the Redeemer, the Source of all graces, to the world, and in this way she is the channel of all graces.
  39. Mary, the Mother of God, is entitled to the Cult of Hyperdulia.
  40. Actual Grace internally and directly enlightens the understanding and strengthens the will.
  41. The Grace of faith is not necessary for the performance of a morally good action.
  42. Actual Grace is not necessary for the performance of a morally good action.
  43. In the condition of fallen nature it is morally impossible for man without restoring grace (gratia sanans) to fulfill the entire moral law and to overcome all serious temptations for any considerable period of time.
  44. Grace cannot be obtained by petitions deriving from purely natural prayer.
  45. Man of himself cannot acquire any positive disposition for grace.
  46. God gives all innocent unbelievers (infideles negativi) sufficient grace to achieve eternal salvation.
  47. Sanctifying Grace is a supernatural state of being which is infused by God, and which permanently inheres in the soul.
  48. Sanctifying grace is not a substance, but a real accident, which inheres in the soul-substance.
  49. Supernatural grace is a participation in the divine nature.
  50. Sanctifying grace makes the just man a Temple of the Holy Ghost.
  51. The loss of sanctifying grace always involves the loss of Charity.
  52. The Church is the Mystical Body of Jesus Christ.
  53. By reason of her purpose and the means she uses to effect it the Church is a supernatural spiritual society.
  54. The Church is a perfect society.
  55. The Church is indefectible, that is, she remains and will remain the Institution of Salvation, founded by Christ, until the end of the world.
  56. The secondary object of the Infallibility is truths of the Christian teaching on faith and morals, which are not formally revealed, but which are closely connected with the teaching of Revelation.
  57. The Church founded by Christ is an external visible commonwealth.
  58. Not only those members who are holy but the sinners also belong to the Church.
  59. The members of the Church are those who have validly received the Sacrament of Baptism and who are not separated from the unity of the confession of the Faith, and from the unity of the lawful communion of the Church.
  60. The members of the Kingdom of God on earth and in the other world sanctified by the redeeming grace of Christ are united in a common supernatural life with the Head of the Church and with one another.
  61. By intercessory prayer the Faithful on earth can procure gifts from God for one another.
  62. The faithful on earth can, by their good works performed in the state of grace, render atonement for one another.
  63. The Sacraments of the New Covenant are effective signs of grace instituted by Christ.
  64. Christ instituted all the Sacraments immediately and personally.
  65. Christ fixed the substance of the Sacraments. The Church has no power to alter them.
  66. God can communicate grace even without the Sacraments.
  67. The primary minister of the Sacraments is the God-Man Jesus Christ.
  68. The validity and efficacy of the Sacrament is independent of the minister’s orthodoxy and state of grace.
  69. For the validity of the Sacraments in the case of adult recipients the intention of receiving the Sacrament is necessary.
  70. The Old Testament Sacraments wrought, ex opere operato, not grace, but merely an external lawful purity.
  71. The materia proxima of the Sacrament of Baptism is the ablution, by physical contact, of the body with water.
  72. The form of Baptism consists in the words of the minister which accompany it and more closely determine it.
  73. As a Sacrament of the living, Confirmation effects (per se) an increase of Sanctifying Grace.
  74. The extraordinary minister of Confirmation is a priest on whom this full power is conferred by the common law or by a special apostolic indult.
  75. Confirmation can be received by any baptized person who is not already confirmed.
  76. The repetition of Confirmation is invalid and grievously sinful.
  77. The Sacramental Accidents retain their physical reality after the change of the substance.
  78. The Sacramental Accidents continue without a subject in which to inhere.
  79. The Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist is a mystery of Faith.
  80. The form of the Eucharist consists in Christ’s Words of institution, uttered at the Consecration.
  81. The Chief fruit of the Eucharist is an intrinsic union of the recipient with Christ.
  82. The Eucharist, as food for the soul, preserves and increases the supernatural life of the soul.
  83. The Eucharist is a pledge of heavenly bliss and of the future resurrection of the body.
  84. For adults the reception of the Eucharist is necessary for salvation with the necessity of precept (necessitate praecepti).
  85. Those sins which are already forgiven directly by the Church’s Power of the Keys are a sufficient object of confession.
  86. The source of Indulgences is the Church’s treasury of satisfaction which consists of superabundant satisfactions of Christ and of the Saints.
  87. Extreme Unction is not of itself (per se) necessary for salvation.
  88. The consecration of a Bishop is a Sacrament.
  89. The Order of Diaconate is a Sacrament.
  90. The extraordinary dispenser of the four Minor Orders and of the Order of the Subdiaconate is the presbyter.
  91. The Sacrament of Order can be validly received by a baptized person of the male sex only.
  92. Marriage was not instituted by Man, but by God.
  93. The primary purpose of Marriage is the generation and bringing-up of offspring. The secondary purpose is mutual help and the morally regulated satisfaction of the sex urge.
  94. The essential properties of Marriage are unity (monogamy) and indissolubility.
  95. Every valid contract of Marriage between Christians is of itself a sacrament.
  96. The contracting parties in Matrimony minister the Sacrament each to the other.
  97. The Church possesses the sole and exclusive right to make laws and administer justice in the matrimonial affairs of baptized persons, in so far as these affect the Sacrament.
  98. With death the possibility of merit or demerit or conversion ceases.
  99. The time of Jesus’ second coming is unknown to men.
  100. The bodies of the just will be re-modeled and transfigured to the pattern of the risen Christ.
  101. The bodies of the godless will rise again in incorruption and immortality, but they will not be transfigured.
  102. The present world will be destroyed on the Last Day.
  103. The present world will be restored on the Last Day.
God bless,


Saturday, May 13, 2006

Berean study of the Scriptures

The Bereans searched the OLD TESTAMENT for the truth that JESUS was the Savior of the World, as that was what was considered "the Scriptures" of that time (cf. Acts 17:10ff). What chapter and verse explicitly shows that JESUS is the Savior of the World?? It seems the Bereans used OT typology to discover the TRUTH. That's how the Bereans read the Bible and came to believe a BIBLICAL truth.

Likewise, Catholics read the OT like the Bereans. We see the Christian truth about Mary hidden within the OT. We see more in the Bible than just "Jesus is the Son of Mary." To see only that is certainly not reading Scripture as the Bereans did.

From the earliest centuries, Christians saw the OT Ark as a type of Mary. The connection is clear. That Ark carried the written Word of God; Mary carried the living Word. Mary is the living Ark of the living Word. The Ark helps us to see the biblical basis for doctrines like the Immaculate Conception and Assumption, which are not taught explicitly in Sacred Scripture, but which are taught implicitly through OT "Berean" typology. Mary, like the OT Ark was made pure [Immaculate Conception], stayed pure [Perpetual Virginity], and kept from corruption [bodily Assumption into heaven].

It is also significant that in Revelation, after seeing a vision of the OT Ark, St. John immediately sees a vision of a woman (Mary), thereby further connecting the OT Ark to the NT Ark--Mary.
Then God's temple in heaven was opened, and the ark of his covenant was seen within his temple; and there were flashes of lightning, voices, peals of thunder, an earthquake, and heavy hail. And a great portent appeared in heaven, a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars...she brought forth a male child, one who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron (Rev 11:19-12:1,5)
Moreover, God's chosen people in the OT used the Ark of the Covenant as a guide in their journey into the promised land (Num 10:33; Josh 3:3,6,11,14). Moses and his people also used the OT Ark of the Covenant in their battle against adversity (Josh 3:13-17) and against their enemies (Joshua 6). Likewise, you may find Catholics who place Mary (the new Ark) in a prominent place in their faith journey, turning to her frequently in their fight against evil. In the OT, the actions of Moses and God's people did not prove they worshipped the Ark. Any effects the Ark had in guiding them and battling adversity came only from God. The same is true for Catholics who turn to Mary for her intercession.

Berean Catholics have come to understand, through searching the Scripture, that there's something more to Mary than simply being the Mother of Jesus. She is the living Ark of the living Covenant, and just like Moses and his people in Sacred Scripture, Catholics have made a prominent place for the Ark of the Covenant to help guide us in our faith journey, in our battle against adversity. We don't worship the Ark any more than the people of Isreal worshiped the Ark. But we have a Berean understanding of the power of God which is truly manifest within His Holy Ark, in accord with His Holy Will. It's just as Scriptural as the Good News was to the Bereans who, after being taught by St. Paul, found hidden in the OT the teaching about Jesus.

God bless,


Saturday, May 06, 2006

Archbishop Chaput on the Crusades

From a Catholic News Agency article...

Reconciliation is a dialogue, says Archbishop Chaput about Crusades

Denver, May. 04, 2005 (CNA)) - In light of Friday’s release of Ridley Scott’s new film about the Crusades, Kingdom of Heaven, Denver’s Archbishop Charles Chaput is challenging Christians to reclaim their lost memories.

In his weekly column, the Archbishop chided the loss of Christian identity and history from the American and European culture, and noted the new film, which, as the New York Times puts it, portrays Muslims as “bent on coexistence until Christian extremists ruin everything.”

He said that, “By influencing our choices here and now, memory encourages a certain shape to the future — and discourages others. That’s why every new ideology and generation of social engineers seeks to rewrite the past. Whoever controls the memory of a culture also has power over its future.”

He added that Christians have a duty to prevent the loss of “the real facts of history” and thereby prevent God being “scrubbed out” of America’s future.

While humbly facing the legitimate evils, which were done by Christians in the Crusades, Archbishop Chaput pointed out that they need to be viewed within their historical context, noting also the genuine “faith, nobility, heroism and self sacrifice.”

The Archbishop pointed out that, “Lasting reconciliation between aggrieved parties always begins with an honest, mutual examination of past sins. This requires an accurate historical record.”

“As Christians,” he said, “we need to repent of our own many sins and acknowledge the sins — sometimes, terrible sins — committed by Christians in the past. We also need to invite, by our example and by our commitment to telling the truth, the repentance of others who have sinned against Christians — sometimes, terribly — over the centuries.”

“Unfortunately, over the past few decades,” he said, “the confession of sins has often seemed like a Christian monologue. That isn’t just. It isn’t honest. And it doesn’t serve charity, because charity is always wedded to truth.”

For those interested in a learning more about the Crusades, I recommend the following A Concise History of the Crusades by Thomas F. Madden.

God bless,