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Sophie
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/11 14:15:20 (permalink)


Protestant preacher John Knox (a Calvinist theologian) renewed the attack on female rule in First Blast of the Trumpet Against the Monstrous Regiment of Women. Written while Catholic women ruled France, Scotland, and England, the book did not appear in print until 1558, after the Protestant queen Elizabeth I had assumed the throne of England. Elizabeth's supporters were quick to respond to Knox, arguing that God had made Elizabeth queen because she was unlike other women.



Dear friends,

I hope will become clear the fact that during the Middle Ages, members of the Catholic hierarchy and Catholic theologians weren't the only men of faith equipped with extraordinarily dim views of women.


John Knox

The famous Scottish clergyman John Knox (1510-1572) who was a leader of the Protestant Reformation lived during the time of two Popes, Pope Gregory XIII  (b. 1502-d.1585; papal reign 1572-1585) and Pope Pius IV (b. 1499-d.1565; papal reign 1559-1565).
 
Today Knox is revered as the founder of the Presbyterian denomination. After after Luther and Calvin, he is perhaps the best known protestant theologian during the time of the Reformation.  He was a foremost Protestant leader in Scotland and is today called ‘father’ of the Church of Scotland.

While in exile against the three queens who were ruling England, France and Scotland at the time, Knox wrote his book The First Blast of the Trumpet. In it, Knox's main contention is that the exercise of authority by women is contrary to both natural law and religion.

The interest of this lengthy treatise for us is that Knox's arguments reflect the beliefs of the day, both among Catholics and Reformers. In a document found in our www.womenpriests.org on line library, our website founder and Academic Advisor, Dr. John Wijngaards has selected a few extract for our consideration.

In the following post, I will share them here.  If you have any questions, please let me know.

with love and blessings,

~Sophie~
post edited by Sophie - 2009/01/13 04:12:16
Sophie
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/11 14:16:44 (permalink)
The First Blast of the Trumpet’ by John Knox
Geneva: 1558 AD
 
Source: Selected Writings of John Knox: Public Epistles, Treatises, and Expositions to the Year 1559, by David Laing (ed.), Edinburgh 1864. Full electronic copy available.
 

John Knox
 
. . . .“To promote a woman to bear rule, superiority, dominion, or empire above any realm, nation, or city, is repugnant to nature; an insult to God, a thing most contrary to his revealed will and approved ordinance; and finally, it is the subversion of good order, of all equity and justice.”

[Women are weak and foolish by nature]
 
. . . “Nature, I say, does paint them forth to be weak, frail, impatient, feeble, and foolish; and experience has declared them to be inconstant, variable, cruel, lacking the spirit of counsel and regiment. And these notable faults have men in all ages espied in that kind, for the which not only they have removed women from rule and authority, but also some have thought that men subject to the counsel or empire of their wives were unworthy of public office. For thus writes Aristotle, in the second of his Politics. What difference shall we put, says he, whether that women bear authority, or the husbands that obey the empire of their wives, be appointed to be magistrates? For what ensues the one, must needs follow the other: to wit, injustice, confusion, and disorder.”

[The Law forbids women to hold public offices]
 
. . . . “But lest that we shall seem to be of this opinion alone, let us hear what others have seen and decreed in this matter. In the [Roman] Rules of the Law thus is it written: "Women are removed from all civil and public office, so that they neither may be judges, neither may they occupy the place of the magistrate, neither yet may they be speakers for others." . . .

The Law further will not permit that the woman give anything to her husband, because it is against the nature of her kind, being the inferior member, to presume to give anything to her head. The Law does moreover pronounce womankind to be most avaricious (which is a vice intolerable in those that should rule or minister justice). And Aristotle, as before is touched, does plainly affirm, that wheresoever women bear dominion, there the people must needs be disordered, living and abounding in all intemperance, given to pride, excess, and vanity; and finally, in the end, they must needs come to confusion and ruin.”

[History shows that women cannot be trusted with authority]
 
. . . “I might adduce histories, proving some women to have died for sudden joy; some for impatience to have murdered themselves; some to have burned with such inordinate lust, that for the quenching of the same, they have betrayed to strangers their country and city; and some to have been so desirous of dominion, that for the obtaining of the same, they have murdered the children of their own sons, yea, and some have killed with cruelty their own husbands and children. But to me it is sufficient (because this part of nature is not my most sure foundation) to have proved, that men illuminated only by the light of nature have seen and have determined that it is a thing most repugnant to nature, that women rule and govern over men.”

[The Creator made woman subject to man]
 
“Woman in her greatest perfection was made to serve and obey man, not to rule and command him. As St. Paul does reason in these words: "Man is not of the woman, but the woman of the man. And man was not created for the cause of the woman, but the woman for the cause of man; and therefore ought the woman to have a power upon her head" [1 Cor. 11:8-10] (that is, a cover in sign of subjection). Of which words it is plain that the apostle means, that woman in her greatest perfection should have known that man was lord above her; and therefore that she should never have pretended any kind of superiority above him, no more than do the angels above God the Creator, or above Christ their head. So I say, that in her greatest perfection, woman was created to be subject to man.”

[Further reason for subjection was put on woman by way of punishment]
 
“But after her fall and rebellion committed against God, there was put upon her a new necessity, and she was made subject to man by the irrevocable sentence of God, pronounced in these words: "I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception. With sorrow shalt thou bear thy children, and thy will shall be subject to thy man; and he shall bear dominion over thee" (Gen. 3:16). Hereby may such as altogether be not blinded plainly see, that God by his sentence has dejected all women from empire and dominion above man. For two punishments are laid upon her: to wit, a dolour, anguish, and pain, as oft as ever she shall be mother; and a subjection of her self, her appetites, and will, to her husband, and to his will. From the former part of this malediction can neither art, nobility, policy, nor law made by man deliver womankind; but whosoever attains to that honour to be mother, proves in experience the effect and strength of God's word. But (alas!) ignorance of God, ambition, and tyranny have studied to abolish and destroy the second part of God's punishment. For women are lifted up to be heads over realms, and to rule above men at their pleasure and appetites. But horrible is the vengeance which is prepared for the one and for the other, for the promoters and for the persons promoted, except they speedily repent. For they shall be dejected from the glory of the sons of God to the slavery of the devil, and to the torment that is prepared for all such as do exalt themselves against God.”

[All women suffer dominion by men because of Eve's sin]
 
“Against God can nothing be more manifest than that a woman shall be exalted to reign above man; for the contrary sentence he has pronounced in these words: "Thy will shall be subject to thy husband, and he shall bear dominion over thee" (Gen. 3:16). As [though] God should say, "Forasmuch as you have abused your former condition, and because your free will has brought yourself and mankind into the bondage of Satan, I therefore will bring you in bondage to man. For where before your obedience should have been voluntary, now it shall be by constraint and by necessity; and that because you have deceived your man, you shall therefore be no longer mistress over your own appetites, over your own will or desires. For in you there is neither reason nor discretion which are able to moderate your affections, and therefore they shall be subject to the desire of your man. He shall be lord and governor, not only over your body, but even over your appetites and will." This sentence, I say, did God pronounce against Eve and her daughters, as the rest of the scriptures do evidently witness. So that no woman can ever presume to reign above man, but the same she must needs do in despite of God, and in contempt of his punishment and malediction.”

[The Fathers too teach that women are sinful and subject]


  • “Tertullian, in his book of Women's Apparel, after he has shown many causes why gorgeous apparel is abominable and odious in a woman, adds these words, speaking as it were to every woman by name: "Do you not know," says he, "that you are Eve. The sentence of God lives and is effectual against this kind; and in this world, of necessity it is, that the punishment also live. You are the port and gate of the devil. You are the first transgressor of God's law. You did persuade and easily deceive him whom the devil durst not assault. For your merit (that is, for your death), it behooved the Son of God to suffer the death; and does it yet abide in your mind to deck you above your skin coats?" ”
  • . . . “And how that woman ought to obey man, Augstine speaks yet more clearly in these words, "The woman shall be subject to man as unto Christ. For woman," says he, "has not her example from the body and from the flesh, that so she shall be subject to man, as the flesh is unto the Spirit, because that the flesh in the weakness and mortality of this life lusts and strives against the Spirit, and therefore would not the Holy Ghost give example of subjection to the woman of any such thing," etc. This sentence of Augustine ought to be noted of all women, for in it he plainly affirms, that woman ought to be subject to man.”
  • . . . “St. Jerome agrees in every point, who thus writes in his Hexaemeron: "Adam was deceived by Eve, and not Eve by Adam, and therefore it is just, that woman receive and acknowledge him for governor whom she called to sin, lest that again she slide and fall by womanly facility." . . . . He proceeds further, saying, "Women are commanded to be subject to men by the law of nature, because man is the author or beginner of the woman: for as Christ is the head of the church, so is man of the woman. From Christ the church took beginning, and therefore it is subject unto him; even so did woman take beginning from man that she should be subject."
  • . . . “Ambrose, writing upon the second chapter of the first epistle to Timothy, after he has spoken much of the simple arrayment of women, he adds these words: "Woman ought not only to have simple arrayment, but all authority is to be denied unto her. For she must be in subjection to man (of whom she has taken her origin), as well in dress as in service." And after a few words, he says, "Because that death did enter into the world by her, there is no boldness that ought to be permitted unto her, but she ought to be in humility." Hereof it is plain, that from every woman, be she married or unmarried, is all authority taken to execute any office that appertains to man. Yea, it is plain, that every woman is commanded to serve, to be in humility and subjection.”

http://www.womenpriests.org/theology/knox.asp
Sophie
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/11 14:18:03 (permalink)

Dr. John Wijngaards


Dr. Wijngaards's Conclusion:



Knox goes on and on in this way, repeating all the stock arguments common in his day. Not once does he attack Catholics in this treatise. On the question of the inferior status and sinful nature of women all theologians of the time, whether Catholic or Protestant, were in agreement!

http://www.womenpriests.org/theology/knox.asp
Sophie
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/11 14:19:50 (permalink)
Died January 7 in 1655 - Pope Innocent X

Pope Innocent X (1574-1655), born Giovanni Battista Pamphilj (or Pamphili), was Pope from 1644 to 1655. Born in Rome of a family from Gubbio in Umbria who had come to Rome during the pontificate of Pope Innocent IX, he graduated from the Collegio Romano and followed a conventional cursus honorum, following his uncle Girolamo Pamphilj as auditor of the Rota, and like him, attaining the dignity of cardinal in 1629. Trained as a lawyer, he succeeded Pope Urban VIII (1623–44) on September 15, 1644, as one of the most politically shrewd pontiffs of the era, who much increased the temporal power of the Vatican.


Pope Innocent X

Papal nuncio
 
Pope Gregory XV (1621–23) sent him as nuncio to the court of Naples. Urban VIII sent him to accompany his nephew, Francesco Barberini, whom he had accredited as nuncio, first in France and then in Spain, where Pamphilj had the firsthand opportunities of forming an intense animosity towards Barberini. In reward of his labors, Giovanni Battista was made apostolic nuncio at the court of Philip IV of Spain (1621–65).

Papacy: Election
 
The conclave for the election of a successor to Urban VIII was long and stormy, lasting from August 9 to September 15, 1644. The French faction objected to the Spanish candidate, as an enemy of Jules Cardinal Mazarin – who guided French policy – but found Pamphilj an acceptable compromise, though he had served as legate to Spain. Mazarin himself, bearing the French veto of Cardinal Pamphilj, arrived too late, and the election was accomplished.

Relations with France

Soon after his accession, Innocent X (as he chose to be called) initiated legal action against the Barberini for misappropriation of public funds, an easily demonstrated crime in seventeethy century courts anywhere. Antonio and Francesco Barberini fled to Paris, where they found a powerful protector in Mazarin. Innocent X confiscated their property, and on February 19, 1646, issued a bull ordaining that all cardinals who might leave the Papal States for six months without express papal permission, should be deprived of their benefices and eventually of their cardinalate itself. The French parliament declared the papal ordinance void in France, but Innocent X did not yield until Mazarin prepared to send troops to Italy. Henceforth the papal policy towards France became more friendly, and somewhat later the Barberini were rehabilitated.

In 1643, Innocent X condemned by the Cum Occasione papal bull 5 propositions of Jansenius's Augustinus, inspired by St. Augustine, as heretical and close to Lutheranism. This led to the formulary controversy, Blaise Pascal's writing of the Lettres Provinciales, and finally to the rasing of the Jansenist convent of Port-Royal and the subsequent dissolving of its community.

Relations with Parma

The death of Pope Urban VIII is said to have been hastened by chagrin at the result of the First War of Castro, a war he had undertaken against Odoardo Farnese, the Duke of Parma. Hostilities between the papacy and the Duchy of Parma resumed in 1649, and forces loyal to Pope Innocent X destroyed the city of Castro onSeptember 2, 1649.

Peace of Westphalia

Innocent X objected to the conclusion of the Peace of Westphalia, against which his nuncio in his name vainly protested, and against which he issued the bull Zelo Domus Dei in November 1648, which was ignored by the European Powers. The most important of his doctrinal decisions was his condemnation of five disputed Jansenist propositions, May 31, 1653. 

English Civil War

During the Civil War (1642–49) in England and Ireland, Innocent X strongly supported the independent Confederate Ireland, over the objections of Mazarin and the Queen Mother, Henrietta Maria, exiled in Paris. The Pope sent as nuncio extraordinary to Ireland, Giovanni Battista Rinuccini, archbishop of Fermo, who arrived at Kilkenny with a large quantity of arms and military supplies including twenty thousand pounds of gunpowder with a very large sum of money. At Kilkenny Rinuccini was received with great honours, asserting in his Latin declaration that the object of his mission was to sustain the King, but above all to rescue from pains and penalties the Catholic people of Ireland in securing the free and public exercise of the Catholic religion, and the restoration of the churches and church property. But in the end Oliver Cromwell restored Ireland to the Parliamentarian side, with great bloodshed, and Rinuccini returned to Rome in 1649, after four fruitless years. 

Olimpia Maidalchini
 

Algardi's Bust of Olimpia Maidalchini

Olimpia Maidalchini, who had been married to his late brother, was accounted Innocent X's mistress because her influence with him in matters of promotion and politics were so complete, a state of affairs alluded to in the Encyclopaedia Britannia 9th edition (1880):

Throughout his reign the influence exercised over him by Maidalchini, his deceased brother's wife, was very great, and such as to give rise to gross scandal, for which, however, there appears to have been no adequate ground... The avarice of his female counsellor gave to his reign a tone of oppression and sordid greed which probably it would not otherwise have shown, for personally he was not without noble and reforming impulses.

Maidalchini's reputation can be seen in her unflattering bust by Alessandro Algardi (circa 1650), currently in the Doria Pamphilj Gallery. Maidalchini was notorious for guarding access to Innocent X, and utilizing it to her own financial benefit. Her veiled attire in the bust is a jab at the fact that neither Maidalchini nor her family provided for the burial of Innocent X after his death in 1655, which was paid for by Innocent X's former butler. In fact, after the death of Innocent X, Maidalchini removed treasures from the papal palace for three days, while the pontiff's body was hidden in a corner. Some historians describe Innocent X as "entirely under the control" of Maidalchini.
 
This legacy is tied up in the accounts of the Roman Pasquinade as well as French (Innocent X had shunned France in favor of Spain and Protestant sources. The Catholic Encyclopedia refers to Maidalchini as the "great blemish" on the pontificate of the "blameless" Innocent X, whom it styles a "lover of justice." Maidalchini is sometimes referred to as "the papessa" ("lady pope"), a variant of a title also applied to Pasqualina Lehnert (confidant of Pope Pius XII), and (the legendary) Pope Joan. Some sources even allege that Maidalchini was Innocent X's lover, an accusation which goes back to Gregorio Leti's Vita di Donna Olimpia Maidalchini (1666), written under the pseudonym Gualdus, and that she poisoned cardinals (with the help of her pharmacist, Exili) to open up additional vacancies for simony. German historian Leopold von Ranke concluded that she was not Innocent X's lover.

From Cavalier Giustiniani, 1652:

Donna Olimpia Maidalchini is a woman of great spirit, but her sole title to influence is that of a rigid economist. When offices fell vacant at court, nothing was decided without her good pleasure; when church livings were to be distributed, the ministers of the dataria had orders to defer all appointments until, notice having been given to her of the nature of those benefices, she might then select such as best pleased her for her own disposal; if episcopal sees were to be conferred, it was to her that the candidates applied; and that which most effectually revolted every upright mind was to see that those were preferred who were most liberal in giving. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olimpia_Maidalchini

Rivalry between two Papal Families

A measure of the rivalry between two arriviste papal families, the Barberini and the Pamphilj, can be judged from Guido Reni's painting of the Archangel Michael, trampling Satan in which the features of the Pamphilj are immediately recognized. The less-than-subtle political statement still hangs in a side chapel of the Capuchin friars' Church of the Conception (Santa Maria della Concezione) in Rome. During the papacy of Pope Urban VIII, whose princely rival among the College of Cardinals was Giovanni Battista Pamphilj. Antonio Barberini, the Pope's brother, was a Cardinal who had begun his career with the Capuchin brothers. About 1635, at the height of the Thirty Years' War in Germany, in which the Papacy was intricately involved, Cardinal Antonio commissioned a painting of the combative archangel Michael, trampling Satan (the source of heresy and error) for the church of his old Order.

 
Guido Reni's archangel Michael (Capuchin church of Santa Maria della Concezione, Rome) tramples a Satan with the vividly recognizable features of Pope Innocent X. 
click on image to enlarge.

The legend that the high-living patrician painter Guido Reni, whose personal dash was at least as great as his brilliant drawing and brushwork, had been insulted by rumors circulated, he thought, by Cardinal Pamphilj, serves to place on the painter's shoulders the vengeful act that could not have been overlooked – or discouraged – by his Barberini patron. Though when a few years later Pamphilj was raised to the Papacy, Antonio Barberini fled to France on the embezzlement charges that have been mentioned, the Capuchins held fast to their chapel altarpiece.

In 1650, Innocent X celebrated a Jubilee. He embellished Rome with inlaid floors and Bas-relief in Saint Peter's, erected Bernini's Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi in Piazza Navona, the Pamphilj stronghold in Rome, and ordered the construction of Palazzo Nuovo at the Campidoglio.

Innocent X is also the subject of Portrait of Innocent X, a famous painting by Diego Velzquez housed in the family gallery of Palazzo Doria (Galleria Doria Pamphilj). This portrait inspired the "Screaming Pope" paintings by 20th century painter Francis Bacon, the most famous of which is Bacon's Study after Velázquez's Portrait of Pope Innocent X.

Innocent X died January 7, 1655, and was succeeded by Pope Alexander VII.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope_Innocent_X
Sophie
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/11 16:42:18 (permalink)
Dear friends,

The Vatican's first modern attempt to justify the exclusion of women from priesthood was made in the form of the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith's (CDF) 1976 Inter Insigniores (Declaration by the CDF giving reasons why women cannot be ordained. In it's paragraph 7, the Vatican makes the claim that:




Since that period (the Middle Ages) and up to our own time, it can be said that the question [of women’s ordination] has not been raised again, for the practice has enjoyed peaceful and universal acceptance. Inter Insigniores § 7.


Do the facts bear out this assertion by the CDF to be true?  Let's take a look.
 

The Middle Ages

The Middle Ages are defined as the period in history which lasted for roughly a millenium, commonly dated from the fall of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century to the beginning of the Early Modern Period in the 16th century, marked by the division of Western Christianity in the Reformation, the rise of humanism in the Italian Renaissance, and the beginnings of European overseas expansion. There is some variation in the dating of the edges of these periods which is due mainly to differences in specialization and focus of individual scholars.

Given this framework of time, this year already we have become acquainted with some Popes whose lives were lived completely during the Middle Ages.  Specifically, Popes from the Middle Ages we have met so far this year are:  Pope John II (Pope from 533-535), Pope Alexander VI (lived 1431-1503), Pope Innocent X (lived 1574-1655), Pope Gregory XIII  (lived 1502-1585). 

So if what the CDF says is true, ie that the exclusion of women has enjoyed peaceful and universal acceptance since the Middle Ages and up to our own time, we should be able to look  and find that literature from the times of these popes and find that the literature supports the CDF contention.

The Devil Carrying Off A Frivilous Woman
in Malleus Maleficarum

And so -- on assignment -- our research team at www.womenpriests.org has taken a look!  What we have found tells us that if the CDF believes its assertion, it must be because poor research did not surface the documents that are easily found. Besides the Malleus Maleficarum aka Hammer of Witches (see this earlier post and following: http://www.womenpriests.org/circles/fb.asp?m=29743) in the not so obscure country of Germany, we find published in 1618 (and republished in 1619, 1671, 1673 and 1720) the anonymously published text Grund= und probierliche Beschreibung .... Belangend die Frag Ob die Weiber Menschen seyn oder nicht? or in translation, Concerning the Question of Whether Women are Human Beings or Not?  (I refer to it hereinafter as 'The Question.')

The document was recently published again in Archiv für philosophie- und theologie-geschichtliche Frauenforschung, vol. IV, ed. Elisabeth Gössmann, Iudicium Verlag Munich, 1996, pp. 101-124.  

'The Question' is described as an 'Entertaining Discussion on whether Women are Human Beings or Not?' is comprised of a conversation between two characters:
  • Brother Andy, also known as Woman's Enemy, who belongs to the Benedictine Order.
  • Father Eugene, who bears the nickname Woman's Friend, who is an elderly Jesuit.

Thanks to the translation efforts of our website founder who now serves as our Academic Advisor, Dr. John Wijngaards, we have a copy of The Question available in English.  Contrary to what the CDF says, it shows clearly the theological prejudices against women operative during the period for which the CDF asserts:

Since that period (the Middle Ages) and up to our own time, it can be said that the question [of women’s ordination] has not been raised again, for the practice has enjoyed peaceful and universal acceptance. Inter Insigniores § 7. [emphasis mine!]

The forward of '...The Question..." describes the text as follows:

A thorough and profound description/ argument and conclusion, together with extensive replies
Concerning the question Whether Women are Human Beings or not?
 
Put together mostly from Sacred Scripture, the remainder from other authors and experience itself
The German not earlier seen in print: but now available for everyone's good instruction.
 
Dedicated to the female sex / in their defence as they deserve
comically written and published in the form of a conversation.
 
By a special lover of love and of modesty, anno 1617.
 
Printed in the year 1618
 
[Foreword]
 
To the well intentioned reader
 
As is known, quite often disputations and similar treatises have appeared in print regarding the question whether women are human beings or not.
 
Without doubt from these booklets arguments are drawn, translated into German, and quoted at random to the annoyance of the female sex.
 
These arguments are here presented in logical order and provided with replies that refute and disprove them.
 
So that both men and women can read the same with special benefit [to each].
 
May it go well with you!

For your reading pleasure, a copy of The Question translated into English is available here: http://www.womenpriests.org/traditio/eugene.asp  If you have any questions, please let me know.

with love and blessings,

~Sophie~
post edited by Sophie - 2009/01/12 03:59:45
Sophie
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/11 16:50:44 (permalink)
Sophie
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/11 16:52:07 (permalink)
The questions examined in 'The Question':
 
  1. [Setting the scene.]
  2. [Scripture does not say women are human.]
  3. [Mary is a human being but only by way of exception.]
  4. [Women have no human intelligence.]
  5. [Women are forbidden to hold any public office.]
  6. [Women are not capable of full human speech.]
  7. [Women are forbidden to speak in church.]
  8. [Women’s intelligence is just animal shrewdness.]
  9. [Women were not created in God’s image.]
  10. [Woman was only created to be man’s helper.]
  11. [Only the man received authority from the Creator.]
  12. [Only man was directly created by God.]
  13. [Christ compared women to dogs.]
  14. [Men striving for sanctity should not talk to women.]
  15. [Christ said that women cannot be saved.]
  16. [Women were not circumcised.]
  17. [Women’s sins are just ‘animal sins’.]
  18. [Women suffer pain at childbearing, like animals.]
  19. [Spiritual people should stay away from women.]
  20. [The story of Popess Joan is spurious.]
  21. [Sin is not reckoned to women because they are not human.]
  22. [Women do not rise on the last day.]
  23. [When a woman dies, she returns to nothingness.]
  24. [Women are illiterate.]
  25. [It means nothing that the risen Christ appeared first to women.]
  26. [Christ knew that women can't keep secrets.]
  27. [Women cannot be valid witnesses.]
  28. [St Thomas was put off by the testimony of the women.]
  29. [The Apostles rejected the testimony of women.]
  30. [Women should not be baptised.]
  31. [Scripture reserves baptism to men.]
  32. [Women were not present at the Last Supper.]
  33. [Christ did not want to have anything to do with women.]
  34. [Women have to wear veils because they are impure.]
  35. [To be perfect you have to give up contact with women.]
  36. [Females are born as abnormalities.]
  37. [The abnormality of women shows up in their menstruation.]
  38. [Sirach teaches that women are evil.]
Sophie
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/11 17:19:20 (permalink)
Dear friends,

The question, 'Are women human beings?' is one that's still being asked.  In recent lecture, scholar, lawyer, teacher and activist, Dr. Catherine MacKinnon, visiting professor at Harvard University discussed her new book, Are Women Human?: And Other International Dialogues
 
Though her book is not a work that aims to be theological, its content covers many of the same questions we are wrestling with here.  An article describing her lecture follows here.  The article concludes with the observation,


And, thus, though achieving breakthroughs, women are not yet full human beings, socially or legally.

Given all we now know about the progress of Church teachings, can we add to to this list that women are not yet full human beings theologically, either?

If you have questions, please let me know.

with love and blessings,

~Sophie~

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

Catherine MacKinnon Asks, Are Women Human Yet?
Harvard Law Record
by November 29, 2007


The Friday before Thanksgiving, law students and others from all over the Harvard campus spilled out of Hark South to see Visiting Professor Catharine A. MacKinnon discuss her latest book, Are Women Human?: And Other International Dialogues. Her presentation was hosted by HL Central and the Harvard Women's Law Association.


Dr. Catherine MacKinnon

MacKinnon began by commenting that the title of her book is "a bit of a strange question." Rather than treating the term "human" as a simple existential fact, MacKinnon explained that she regards "human" as a social and legal status that can be explored to answer whether women in reality have full and equal status as human beings. She described her book in general as addressing the use of international human rights law and law overall to gain full human status for women globally.

To provide context for her question, MacKinnon read from the title piece: "If women were human, would we be a cash crop shipped from Thailand in containers into New York's brothels? Would we be sexual and reproductive slaves? . . . Would we be beaten nearly to death, and to death, by men with whom we are close? Would we be sexually molested in our families? . . . If women were human, would our violation be enjoyed by our violators? And, if we were human, when these things happened, would virtually nothing be done about it? . . . When will women be human? When?"

So, are women human yet? Not quite, according to MacKinnon (if that was not already evident from her quote). After writing this book, MacKinnon believes that women globally are at a precise midpoint in the process of becoming full human beings. Women may have rights, the established system of male dominance may be threatened at present, but women's status is not yet secure because women's rights remain "on the terms of a system that is unchanged."

How did she come to this conclusion? MacKinnon explained that her international focus originated with her clients, Bosnian and Croatian women who came to her in 1991 and 1992 to help address the staggering amount of rape that was occurring amidst the genocide they had survived. MacKinnon brought credibility to these women and their experiences of rape during genocide, as well as a claim under the Alien Tort Statute, winning a jury verdict of $745 million in 2000.

MacKinnon noted that she didn't nominate herself to do this work; it was her clients that asked her to do this for them and for other women. And because it was her clients who conceived of and initiated the case, the result was much more organic that the usual method of social change through law, which MacKinnon described as finding a law to change and then selecting the perfect test case. Further, as MacKinnon stated, it is these women's actions that have produced much of the change in international human rights in the past fifteen years.

Drawing from her clients' experiences and her work to develop a legal claim to address their situation, MacKinnon produced the writings that comprise her book. She explained that the process of representing these women and writing about their reality exposed broad dynamics of the gender dominance that operate not only statewide, as she has witnessed for decades, but also internationally. Beginning with the assumption that the state is fundamentally a male institution (both in terms of its "sex," that is, the sex of the people who make up the vast majority of state actors, and in terms of its "gender," that is, how it behaves), MacKinnon sought to determine whether the international order provides a counterbalance to the "maleness" of states, or whether the international order is "metamale," which MacKinnon defines as exhibiting the same "maleness," just on a higher level.

MacKinnon noted that she found much of the same "maleness" internationally, which she groups into four broad dynamics. First, internationally, sovereignty replicates the public-private line, separating public from private, providing men with a sphere of power that is respected from nation to nation. Second, dominance is masked under the purportedly neutral sameness/difference "formal equality" model (as opposed to the "substantive equality" model, which equalizes against an unequal social reality). Third, coercion is construed as consent. Finally, issues of politics are turned into issues of morality and cultural particularity, thereby obscuring the true debate about the fact that gender inequality is a global system.

Nevertheless, though the international order may be "metamale" in some instances, MacKinnon concluded by noting that the scale of the international order benefits women in other instances. According to MacKinnon, the "distance" of the international scale attenuates male bonds and enhances objectivity. The farther an actor in the international legal system is from an act that violates a woman, such as rape during genocide, the more likely the act will be recognized as a violation of a woman as a human being. It is this recognition that protects women's rights as human rights.

Hence, it is the international system that illustrates the midpoint MacKinnon referenced in response to the question of whether women are human yet. Though it is on the international front that change is occurring and women are gaining rights, the international system is still comprised of entities that are seen as essentially sovereign and accordingly are not sufficiently distanced to protect women's human rights. And, thus, though achieving breakthroughs, women are not yet full human beings, socially or legally.

http://media.www.hlrecord.org/media/storage/paper609/news/2007/11/29/
News/Catharine.Mackinnon.Asks.Are.Women.Human.Yet-3123973.shtml
post edited by Sophie - 2009/01/11 17:41:18
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/11 17:52:11 (permalink)
 



The implications of the non-ordination of women? From Women's Ordination Worldwide press release, June 10, 2008:

In baptism, women and men share equally in the priesthood of Christ. Baptism implies a fundamental openness to all sacraments, including Holy Orders. The history of the Church documents the ordination of women.  Jennifer Stark, coordinator of WOW, commented, ‘This is a global issue. In many countries around the world, the exclusion of women from ordained ministry, and thus from the decision-making structures of a worldwide church, has profound effects for their position and well being, and that of their children. It signals that they are lesser beings in the eyes of God.’

Read entire press release, click here: http://www.womenpriests.org/circles/fb.asp?m=22245
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/12 00:37:47 (permalink)
Died January 8, 1198 - Pope Celestine III



Pope Celestine III (Rome, c. 1106 – 1198), born Giacinto Bobone, was elected Pope on March 30, 1191, and reigned until his death. He was born into the noble Bobones family (ancestors of the Orsini family), though he was only a deacon before becoming Pope. He was ordained a priest on April 13, 1191 ruled the church six years, nine months, and nine days (though believed to have been about eighty five when elected), died January 8, 1198, and was buried at the Lateran. He crowned the Emperor Henry VI (1190–97) on the day after his election with a ceremony symbolizing his absolute supremacy, as described by Roger of Hoveden, who is believed (more reasonably as it would seem) by Baronius, but discredited by Natalis Alexander. He subsequently excommunicated the same Henry VI for wrongfully keeping Richard I of England (1189–99) in prison. In 1192, he confirmed the statutes of the Teutonic Order of Knights. He would have resigned the Papacy, and recommended a successor shortly before his death, but was not allowed to do so by the cardinals.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope_Celestine_III
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/12 00:38:47 (permalink)
Born January 9 in 1554 - Pope Gregory XV

Pope Gregory XV (1554-1623), born Alessandro Ludovisi, was pope from 1621, succeeding Paul V on February 9, 1621.


Pope Gregory XV

Biography
 
He was born in Bologna to Count Pompeo Ludovisi and Camilla Bianchini, one of seven surviving siblings.

Educated at the Collegio Romano of the Jesuits in Rome, he went to the University of Bologna to get a degree in both canon and Roman law. There is no sign that he ever took orders: his early career was as a papal jurist in Rome. In 1612 Paul V appointed him Archbishop of Bologna and sent him in August 1616 as nuncio to the Duchy of Savoy, to mediate between Charles Emmanuel I, Duke of Savoy and Philip III of Spain in their dispute concerning the Gonzaga Marquisate of Montferrat. In September 1616 Paul created him Cardinal-Priest of Santa Maria in Traspontina. Henceforth Cardinal Ludovisi remained at his see in Bologna until he went to Rome after the death of Pope Paul V to take part in the conclave in which he was chosen.

At the moment of his election, chiefly through the influence of Cardinal Borghese, at his advanced age (he was 67) and with his weak state of health he saw at once that he would need an energetic man, in whom he could place implicit confidence, to assist him in the government of the Church. His nephew Ludovico Ludovisi, a young man of 25 years, seemed to him to be the right person and, at the risk of being charged with nepotism, he created him cardinal on the third day of his pontificate. On the same day, Orazio, a brother of the pope, was put at the head of the pontifical army. The future revealed that Gregory XV was not disappointed in his nephew. The Catholic Encyclopedia allows that "Ludovico, it is true, advanced the interests of his family in every possible way, but he also used his brilliant talents and his great influence for the welfare of the Church, and was sincerely devoted to the pope."

Gregory secured for the Ludovisi two dukedoms, one for his youngest brother Orzio, made a Nobile Romano and duca di Fiano, 1621, and the other, the duchy of Zagarolo, purchased from the Colonna by his nephew Ludovico Ludovisi in 1622. A second nephew, Niccolo, was made reigning Prince of Piombino and Lord of the Isola d'Elba in 1634, having married the heiress, 30 March 1632.


Pope Gregory XV with his Cardinal Nephew
of unprecedented income and authority,
Ludovico Ludovisi, known as il cardinale padrone.

Through well-arranged political marriages for Niccolò's offspring, further titles were allied to the Ludovisi clan.



Coat of Arms of Pope Gregory XV.

Beyond assisting Ferdinand II, Holy Roman Emperor and the Catholic League against the Protestants, to the tune of a million gold ducats, and Sigismund III Vasa against the Turks, he interfered little in European politics. His Constitution against magicians and witches (Omnipotentis Dei, 20 March, 1623) was the last papal ordinance against witchcraft. Former punishments were lessened, and the death penalty was limited to those who were "proved to have entered into a compact with the devil, and to have committed homicide with his assistance" (CE). He was a learned divine and manifested a reforming spirit; his bull of November 15, 1621, Aeterni Patris regulated papal elections which were to be secret and in writing; three methods of election were allowed: by scrutiny, compromise and quasi-inspiration. On 6 January 1622, he established the Congregatio de propaganda fide the missionary arm of the Roman Curia.

His pontificate was marked by the canonization of Teresa of Avila, Francis Xavier, Ignatius Loyola, Philip Neri, and Isidore the Farmer. He also beatified Aloysius Gonzaga and Peter of Alcantara. He was influential in bringing the Bolognese artist Guercino to Rome, a landmark in the development of the High Baroque style. He sat for his portrait bust both to Gian Lorenzo Bernini and to Alessandro Algardi, whose restrained bust in a tondo is in the church of  Santa Maria in Vallicella.

Gregory XV died in the Quirinal Palace on July 8, 1623, and was buried in the church of Sant'Ignazio. He was succeeded by Urban VIII.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope_Gregory_XV
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/12 00:39:35 (permalink)
On January 10 in 236 - Saint Fabian begins his reign as a Catholic Pope.
 
Fabian was pope, or bishop of Rome, from January 236 to January 20, 250 succeeding Pope Anterus.

Eusebius (Hist. Eccl. Vi. 29) relates how the Christians, having assembled in Rome to elect a new bishop, saw a dove alight upon the head of Fabian, a layman and stranger to the city, who was thus marked out for this dignity, and was at once proclaimed bishop by acclamation, although there were several famous men among the candidates for the vacant position.


Pope Saint Fabian

He is said to have baptized the emperor Philip and his son, to have done some building in the catacombs, to have improved the organization of the church in Rome, and to have appointed officials to register the deeds of the martyrs.

According to "later accounts, more or less trustworthy" according to the Catholic Encyclopedia he sent out the "apostles to the Gauls" to Christianize Gaul after the persecutions under Emperor Decius had all but dissolved the small Christian communities. Fabian sent out seven bishops from Rome to Gaul to preach the Gospel: Gatien to Tours, Trophimus to Arles, Paul to Narbonne, Saturnin to Toulouse, Denis to Paris, Austromoine to Clermont, and Martial to Limoges. He also had the bodies of Hippolytus of Rome and Pope Pontian brought from Sardinia to Rome. He was made a martyr during the persecution of Christians under Emperor Decius, one of the first to die then, on January 20, 250, and was buried in the catacomb of Callixtus. The Greek inscription on his tomb has survived.
 
His deeds are thus described in the Liber Pontificalis: Hic regiones dividit diaconibus et fecit vii subdiacones, qui vii notariis imminerent, Ut gestas martyrum integro fideliter colligerent, et multas fabricas per cymiteria fieri praecepit. ("He divided these regions into deaconships and made seven sub-deaconships which seven secretaries oversaw, so that they brought together the deeds of the martyrs faithfully made whole, and he brought forth many works in the cemeteries.")

Although there is very little authentic information about Fabian, there is evidence that his episcopate was one of great importance in the history of the early church. He was highly esteemed by Cyprian, bishop of Carthage; Novatian refers to his nobilissima memoriae, and he corresponded with Origen. One authority refers to him as Flavian.

He is regarded as a saint, with a feast day of January 20.
 
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Fabian
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/12 00:40:25 (permalink)
Died on January 10 in 681 - Pope Agatho

Pope Saint Agatho (c. 577 – 681), was pope from June 27, 678 to January 10, 681.

Background and Early Life

A Greek born in Sicily of wealthy and devout parents, he allegedly gave away his inheritance after their death and retired to a monastery in Palermo. This belief is based on a letter written by St. Gregory the Great to the abbot of St. Hermes in Palermo, a Benedictine Monastery, mentioning an Agatho. In this letter, Gregory wrote that the abbot could receive Agatho into his monastery if Agatho's wife was willing to enter a convent. While there are reasons to believe that Pope Agatho is this monk, he would have been over 100 years old at the time of his election.


Pope Saint Agatho
 
Reign

Shortly after Agatho became Pope, St Wilfrid, Archbishop of York, arrived at Rome to invoke the authority of the Holy See in his behalf. Wilfrid had been deposed from his see by Theodore, Archbishop of Canterbury, who had carved up Wilfrid's diocese, appointing three bishops to govern the new sees. At a synod which Pope Agatho convoked in the Lateran to investigate the affair, it was decided that Wilfrid's diocese should indeed be divided, but that Wilfrid himself should name the bishops.
 
The major event of his pontificate was the Sixth Ecumenical Council (680–1), which ended the Monothelite heresy that had been tolerated by previous popes (Honorius among them). The council began when Emperor Constantine IV, wanting to heal the schism that separated the two sides, wrote to Pope Donus suggesting a conference on the matter, but Donus was dead by the time the letter arrived. However, Agatho was quick to seize the olive branch offered by the emperor. He ordered councils held throughout the West so that legates could present the universal tradition of the Western Church. Then he sent a large delegation to meet the Easterners at Constantinople.
 
The legates and patriarchs gathered in the imperial palace on November 7, 680. The Monothelites presented their case. Then the letter of Pope Agatho was read which explained the traditional belief of the Church that Christ was of two wills, divine and human. The council agreed that Peter spoke through Agatho. Patriarch George of Constantinople accepted Agatho's letter, as did most of the bishops present. The council proclaimed the existence of the two wills in Christ and condemned Monothelitism, with Pope Honorius being included in the condemnation. When the council ended in September of 681 the decrees were sent to the Pope, but Agatho had died in January. The Council had not only ended the Monothelite heresy, but also had healed the schism.
 
Agatho also undertook negotiations between the Holy See and Constantine, concerning the relations of the Byzantine Court to papal elections. Constantine promised Agatho to abolish or reduce the tax that the popes had had to pay to the imperial treasury on their consecration.

He is venerated as a saint by both Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox. His feast day is on January 10.

Some Traditionalist Catholics say he was the first pope to take, as part of his inauguration, what they call the Papal Oath.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope_Agatho
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/12 00:41:07 (permalink)
Died January 10 in 1276 - Pope Gregory X

Pope Gregory X (c. 1210-1276), born Tebaldo Visconti, was Pope from 1271 to 1276.



Born in Piacenza, he spent most of his ecclesiastical career in the north, in the Low Countries. The Visconti Coat of Arms is the image of a large snake devouring a male child feet first. (Source: New Catholic Dictionary).

He succeeded Pope Clement IV (1265–68) after the papal chair had been vacant for three years (1268–71) due to divisions among the cardinals; the equally split French and Italian cardinals wanted a Pope from their country due to the ongoing political situation with Charles of Anjou. The deadlock was finally broken when the citizens of Viterbo, where the cardinals were assembled, removed the roof from the building where the cardinals were meeting and locked them in, only allowing them bread and water; three days later, Pope Gregory X was elected by the papal election, 1268-1271, the longest papal election in the history of the Roman Catholic church. Gregory X was considered a strong choice because although he was Italian, he had spent most of his career north of the Alps and thus had not been embroiled in recent Italian political controversies.

His election came as a complete surprise to him, occurring while he was engaged in the Ninth Crusade to Acre with Edward I of England (1239 - 1307) in Palestine. Not wanting to leave his mission, his first action as Pope was to send out appeals for aid to the Crusaders, and at his final sermon at Acre just before leaving to sail for Italy he famously said "If I forget thee, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget her cunning."

On his arrival at Rome his first act was to summon the council which met at the Second Council of Lyons in 1274 for the purpose of considering the East-West Schism, the condition of the Holy Land, and the abuses of the Roman Catholic Church. It was while returning from that council that he died at Arezzo, where he is still buried inside the Cathedral Church, on January 10, 1276. To him is due the bull which, subsequently incorporated into the code of canon law, regulated all conclaves for papal elections until the reforms of Pope Paul VI (1963–78).

He was succeeded by Pope Innocent V.

Diplomatic communications with Mongols
 
As soon as he was elected in 1271, Pope Gregory received a letter from the Mongol Khan Kubilai, remitted by Niccolo and Maffeo Polo following their travels to his court in Mongolia. Kubilai was asking for the dispatch of a hundred missionaries, and some oil from the lamp of the Holy Sepulcher. The two Polos (this time accompanied by the young Marco Polo) returned to Mongolia, and remitted the presents from the Pope to Kubilai in 1275.
 

Niccolo and Maffeo Polo remitting
a letter from Kubilai to Pope Gregory X in 1271.

The Mongol Ilkhanate leader Abaqa sent a delegation with over a dozen members to the 1274 Council of Lyon, where plans were made for possible military cooperation between the Mongols and the Europeans. After the Council, Abaqa sent another embassy, led by the Georgian Vassali brothers, to further notify Western leaders of military preparations.

Gregory answered that his legates would accompany the Crusade, and that they would be in charge of coordinating military operations with the Il-Khan. However, these projects of a major new Crusade essentially came to a halt with the death of Gregory X on January 10, 1276. The money which had been saved to finance the expedition was instead distributed in Italy.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope_Gregory_X
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/13 04:22:30 (permalink)
ORIGINAL: Sophie

Died January 8, 1198 - Pope Celestine III



Pope Celestine III (Rome, c. 1106 – 1198), born Giacinto Bobone, was elected Pope on March 30, 1191, and reigned until his death. He was born into the noble Bobones family (ancestors of the Orsini family), though he was only a deacon before becoming Pope. He was ordained a priest on April 13, 1191 ruled the church six years, nine months, and nine days (though believed to have been about eighty five when elected), died January 8, 1198, and was buried at the Lateran. He crowned the Emperor Henry VI (1190–97) on the day after his election with a ceremony symbolizing his absolute supremacy, as described by Roger of Hoveden, who is believed (more reasonably as it would seem) by Baronius, but discredited by Natalis Alexander. He subsequently excommunicated the same Henry VI for wrongfully keeping Richard I of England (1189–99) in prison. In 1192, he confirmed the statutes of the Teutonic Order of Knights. He would have resigned the Papacy, and recommended a successor shortly before his death, but was not allowed to do so by the cardinals.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope_Celestine_III



Dear friends,

There are several reknowned theologians who lived during the time of Pope Celestine III  (born circa 1106 - d. 1198; papal reign 1191-1198.)  Among them are some whose documented writings give us a fairly clear picture about what the theological perspectives were about women were during that time.  Among the distinguished writers are men such as:
Our online library (to access it, click on the word Navigate on the drop down bar at the top of the page) includes documentation about their writings.  I will share a bit more about them and provide you some samples of their writings.  Any questions at any time, please let me know.

with love and blessings,

~Sophie~
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/13 04:37:30 (permalink)

 
Paucapalea, a canon lawyer and theologian
 


Paucapalea was a canon lawyer of the twelfth century. He produced the first commentary (also known as Summa) on the Decretum of Gratian, his teacher. 

From Paucapalea's On Distinctio 5, princ. § 2. v. we read:
  • Women are not allowed to visit a church during menstruation or after the birth of a child.
  • "For only a woman is an animal that menstruates. Through touching her blood fruits will fail to get ripe. Mustard degenerates, grass dries up and trees lose their fruit before time. Iron gets rusted and the air becomes dark. When dogs eat it, they acquire rabies”
  • “Gregory allowed women to visit a church after birth . . . in the penitential of Theodorus we read on the other hand, that if a woman has presumed to enter a church before a predefined time, she has to do penance by fasting on bread and water for as many days as she would have needed to stay away from Church”.
  • “Blessed Gregory said that a woman does not sin in this matter when she enters in church humbly in order to give thanks. Theodore on the other hand speaks of another woman who does not enter the church in order to pray but boldly on account of another necessity”.

Source: Ida Raming, The Exclusion of Women from the Priesthood, Scarecrow Press, Metuchen 1976, pp. 47-49.

http://www.womenpriests.org/theology/paucapal.asp
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/13 05:07:12 (permalink)

 
Rolandus Bandinelli, a canon lawyer and theologian
 


Rolandus Bandinelli, who would later become Pope Alexander III, wrote his Stromata or Summa Rolanda (=Commentaries on Laws) in Bologna in 1148 AD. It is basically a commentary on Gratian's Law Book, Decretum of Gratian.
 
A little bit about Rolandus:


Rolandus Bandinelli in his later capacity
as Alexander III

The theologian/canon lawyer Rolandus Bandinelli would later become Alexander III (born circa 1100 - died 1181; papal reign 1159 - 1181.)  He was  born in Siena.

Today he is considered one of the great medieval popes and is remembered for instituting the two-thirds majority rule for papal elections, championing the universities, and endorsing ecclesiastical independence. He convoked the Third Lateran Council.  Known as a man of courage and conviction, Alexander was often forced to reign in exile.  He stood up to the emperor Frederick I and his antipopes. It was during Alexander's papacy that St. Thomas Becket was martyred.

Other improvements he made to the church in his role as Pope Alexander III included establishing procedures for canonizing saints to avoid acknowleged abuses of canonization, setting minimum age limits for bishops, and recommending they stress simplicity in their lifestyles and refrain from hunting.

Alexander III was born as Orlando (also known as Roland, Rolandus, and Laurentius) Bandinelli around 1100 to a respected Tuscan family with political roots. He became a celebrated professor of Holy Scripture at the University of Bologna, where most likely he had studied under Gratian, the "father of the science of canon law."

Through Gratian's scholarship, the study of church law first became a discipline quite apart from theology; his Concordantia discordantium canonum became the basic text on canon law. 

The Summa Magistri Rolandi, a commentary on Gratian's treatise, is thought to have enhanced Alexander's reputation among the curia, though some scholars contest the attribution. Canon regular at Pisa from 1142 to 1147, Alexander was summoned to Rome in 1148 by Pope Eugenius III, who named him cardinal deacon in 1150, then cardinal priest of St. Mark's in 1151. It is possible that during this period Alexander completed a manuscript, Sententie Rodlandi Bononiensis magistri, based on the work of French canon and scholasticc philosopher Abelard. In 1153 Alexander became vice-chancellor of the Vatican. In 1153, he was appointed chancellor, a position in the curia responsible for diplomatic relations. He would hold the post through the pontificates of Eugenius III (1145 - 1153), Anastasius IV (1154), and Adrian IV (1154 - 1159), remaining a trusted advisor to Adrian throughout his reign.


Frederick Barbarossa submits to the authority of Pope Alexander III (fresco in the Palazzo Pubblico in Siena, by Spinello Aretino).

Alexander's contemporary and biographer, Boso, characterized his subject as "a man of letters, fluent with polished eloquence, a prudent, kind, patient, merciful, gentle, sober, chaste man." These traits helped ensure his success in Rome. His predecesor Adrian frequently chose Alexander to lead negotiations on numerous missions between the papay and secular monarchies in an ongoing battle to wrest power from one another.

Alexander convoked the Third Lateran Council in 1179. Before hundreds of bishops and abbots, twenty-one cardinals, and laymen from all corners of the Earth, the pope issued a number of regulations that sealed his reputation as a gifted ecclesiastical legislator. The bishop of Assisi opened the council by praising the pontiff, declaring, "The great pontiff - who recently rose from the ocean of raging waves of persecution like a serene sun - illuminates not only the present church but the entire world with his worthy brilliance of shining splendor."

Among the pope's decrees at the council was the institution of the two-thirds majority rule for papal elections, a law extant today. Other improvements to the church included establishing procedures for canonizing saints to avoid numerous abuses of canonization, setting minimum age limits for bishops, and recommending they stress simplicity in their lifestyles and refrain from hunting.

Even Alexander's enemies recognized his intellectual and moral virtues. His legacy as an adherent of the movement to build and support universities, which became the great centers of learning in the Middle Ages, and as a champion of ecclesiastical independence are among his most outstanding accomplishments. His epitaph referred to him as "the Light of the Clergy, the Ornament of the Church, the Father of his City and of the World." Voltaire, the eighteenth-century French writer and opponent of organized religion, commemorated the pontiff by writing, "If men have regained their rights, it is chiefly to Pope Alexander III that they are indebted for it; it is to him that so many cities owe their splendor." Upon the death of Alexander III in 1181, Lucius III succeeded to the papacy.

Rolandus Bandinelli is credited with writing his Stromata (= Commentaries on Laws) in Bologna in 1148 AD. It is basically a commentary on Gratian's Law Book.
 
http://www.answers.com/topic/pope-alexander-iii

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

From wikipedia:

Alexander III was the first pope known to have to paid direct attention to missionary activities east of the Baltic Sea. In 1165, his close friend, Eskil, the Archbishop of Lund, appointed a Benedictine monk Fulco as a bishop in Estonia. In 1171, he became the first pope to address the situation of the Church in Finland, with Finns harassing the priests and only relying on God at the time of war.
 
In March 1179, Alexander III held the Third Council of the Lateran, a brilliant assemblage, reckoned by the Roman Church as the eleventh ecumenical council; its acts embody several of the Pope's proposals for the betterment of the condition of the Church, among them the law requiring that no one may be elected pope without the votes of two-thirds of the cardinals, a rule only slightly altered in 1996 which allowed a simple majority vote after thirty indecisive ballots. This synod marks the summit of Alexander III's power.

Besides checkmating Barbarossa, he had humbled Henry II of England concerning the murder of Thomas à Becket in 1170, to whom he was unusually close. In 1172 he confirmed the position of Henry as Lord of Ireland. He had confirmed the right of Afonso I of Portugal to the crown, and even as a fugitive had enjoyed the favour and protection of Louis VII of France. Nevertheless, soon after the close of the synod the Roman republic forced Alexander III to leave the city, which he never re-entered; and on September 29, 1179, some nobles set up the antipope Innocent III (1179–1180). By the judicious use of money, however, Alexander III got him into his power, so that he was deposed in January, 1180. In 1181, Alexander III excommunicated William I of Scotland and put the kingdom under an interdict.

He died at Civita Castellana on August 30, 1181.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope_Alexander_III 
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/13 05:15:37 (permalink)
 

From Rolandus Bandinelli, a canon lawyer and theologian who later became Pope Alexander III's On Causa 15, question 3, beginning ... recognition of ordained deaconesses:
 
Deaconesses were ‘readers of the gospel’
 
“There is no doubt that formerly there existed the custom of ordaining deaconesses, that is: readers of the gospels. Because no deaconess was allowed to be ordained before the age of forty and after ordination they were forbidden to marry.  But women have no part in the order of the priesthood, nor can they have it.”
 
Note: Since he accepts that there were deaconesses in the early church, he restricts women from the priesthood, but not necessarily from the diaconate. However, mistakenly, he equates ‘deaconesses’ with ‘readers of the gospels’.
 
Source: Ida Raming, The Exclusion of Women from the Priesthood, Scarecrow Press, Metuchen 1976, pp. 47-49. 

http://www.womenpriests.org/theology/bandinel.asp
Sophie
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/13 05:18:11 (permalink)
 
 
 


More from Rolandus BandinelliOn Causa 33, question 5, chapter 11:
 
Woman is totally subject to her husband even with regard to her religious relationship to God.

“It is shown in this chapter that if a woman has vowed abstinence from food or drink or dress or anything else except for the carnal debt with the consent of her husband, she need not observe the vow if he orders her to do the opposite. This meaning and the decree itself is clearly proved in these chapters. For a woman must always be subject to her husband as to her own head, as is being taught clearly in these five chapters."

Source: Ida Raming, The Exclusion of Women from the Priesthood, Scarecrow Press, Metuchen 1976, pp. 47-49.

http://www.womenpriests.org/theology/bandinel.asp
Sophie
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RE: Papal History 2009/01/13 05:21:10 (permalink)
 





And from his On Causa33  question 2, chapter 10:
 
A husband has full powers to punish his wife.

“Wives may in no way be killed, but apart from the danger of death they can be punished to incarceration.”

Source: Ida Raming, The Exclusion of Women from the Priesthood, Scarecrow Press, Metuchen 1976, pp. 49-50.

http://www.womenpriests.org/theology/bandinel.asp
 
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